Chantal Coady OBE has been committed to her vision of a “chocolate wonderland” since 1983. Her truffles, bars and moulded morsels are made with the same attention to detail as a fine wine, with organic ingredients and sustainability at the heart of production. Stocked in Liberty for over 30 years, Rococo is a firm favourite in our chocolate shop, and a tasty window into a world “real chocolate. . .”
“When I started I wanted to create a wonderland around chocolate, a fantasy world. In my experience I couldn’t see anything like that in this country, you’d go to places like France and see these amazing chocolate shops, but [in Britain] it was either something industrial or something very old fashioned with slightly grumpy service to match.”
Coady credits her upbringing for her love of all things cocoa: “When I was a child I was obsessed with it, probably because I was one of five . . . chocolate for me has always been associated with a special treat or a reward.” It’s making this treat extra special that Rococo has become known for, holding chocolate to the most exacting standards of flavour and ingredients.
In a similar way to wine, Rococo chocolate begins life on a small, very specific plot of land farmed by dedicated experts: “They’ve turned the idea of chocolate-making on its head. They make it all the way through from tree to bar, adding value at every stage, rather than just creating a crop and shipping it.” This method is great for flavours and farmers alike, and gives a level of added value that Chantal believes is lacking in some areas of the chocolate world:
“People don’t really view chocolate like [wine], but they should be thinking about what chocolate for what occasion. With wine you might have to spend a fortune, whereas with chocolate you don’t have to spend that much to get something really special.”
Of course while something special in taste is going to improve your day no end, Rococo is also committed to the making sure the same experience is available for generations to come: “The farm is organic and way more than fair trade. We’re about sustaining the environment because we don’t know what’s going to happen in the future with climate change; people are connecting back to the farmers more and more, but there’s still a huge ocean that divides most of who’s growing chocolate and who’s consuming it.”