History Of Chocolate
1900 BC: The Origin of Chocolate
It is known that chocolate was already consumed as long as 4000 years ago. Anthropologists found ceramic vessels with residues from the preparation of cocoa beverages dating back to the Olmec, an ancient people from the Mexican Gulf Coast.
100-900: The First Experts
The Maya are considered the most culturally advanced among the Mesoamerican Civilizations and the first real chocolate experts. They took the cocoa tree from the rainforest and grew it in their backyards, knowing that cocoa could be harvested and its beans turned into a treasured drink.
100-900: Food of the Gods
The Maya believed cocoa was a bridge between earth and heaven and left behind wall paintings and other artifacts showing kings and gods enjoying the liquid chocolate. Actually, the scientific name of the cocoa tree Theobroma Cocoa means “food of the gods”
100-900: Chocolate Every Day
Many would envy the lifestyle of the Maya – chocolate at every meal. Even though cocoa was believed of divine origin, all Mayans could enjoy cocoa, regardless of their social status.
1200-1500: A Chocolate Empire
When the Aztec were on the rise they soon ruled over the highlands of what is today central Mexico and far surpassed the power of the Maya at the beginning of the 15th century. The Aztec ordered all their conquered areas to pay them cocoa as a tax, or as the Aztec called it, a “tribute”.
1200-1500: Chocolate as A Status Symbol
Unlike the Mayans, drinking cocoa was a luxury for the Aztec that was only meant to be for the nobles, merchants and worriers.
1200-1500: Bitter Water
The chocolate back then wasn’t usually sweet or melted in the mouth. The Mesoamericans didn’t have any access to sugar, thus the drink they made only consisted of crushed cocoa beans, chili peppers, vanilla and water.
1200-1500: Chocolate As Currency
Cocoa was so precious to the Aztec that its seeds were used as money. A single cacao bean would buy one large tomato, three beans a fresh avocado and 30 beans a rabbit.
1502: First European to Discover Chocolate
Christopher Columbus is the first European to have contact with cocoa, but next to far more exciting treasures the cocoa beans were barely taken into account.
1528: Spanish Conquest of Chocolate
Spanish Conquistador Hernando Cortés, conquers over the Aztec. He is well aware of cocoa’s great value and when he returns to Spain 1528, his galleons are heavily loaded with cocoa beans.
1567: A Meeting Place for High Society
The first chocolate house opens in London. It was a drink reserved for the wealthy due to the high import duties on cocoa beans. But as prices fall, establishments of this type multiply and even replace cafes, tearooms and pubs.
1615: No Chocolate, No Wedding
For several decades cocoa remains a closely guarded secret of the Spanish elites. But when the daughter of Spanish King Philip III married a French King, she couldn’t but bring chocolate to her wedding. Soon, the popularity of chocolate spreads to other European courts.
1778: Cocoa Hits Indonesia
European powers begin to establish cocoa productions all over the world to meet the raising demand for chocolate. So do the Dutch bringing cocoa from the Philippines to Jakarta and Sumatra.
1828: Chocolate Becomes Science
Dutch chemist Coenraad van Houten invents the cocoa press, which revolutionizes the chocolate-making. His press squeezes the cocoa butter out of the bean leaving the powder we now call cocoa.
1839: Chocolate and Nuts
Swiss Chocolatier Charles-Amedee Kohler mixes chocolate with nuts for the first time.
1848: Finally, Chocolate Can Be Eaten
The English Company Fry & Son achieves a revolutionary breakthrough. They create the first eating chocolate. After a 3000-year history as a beverage chocolate finally can be eaten.
1875: First Milk Chocolate
Daniel Peter (son-in-law of Henri Nestlé) adds condensed milk to chocolate and makes the first milk chocolate bar. It is an instant commercial success.
1879: Conching Machine
Rodolphe Lindt produces chocolate that melts on the tongue. He develops the “conching” process that gives chocolate a smoother texture.
1912: Belgium Pralines
Jean Neuhaus invents a chocolate shell that could be filled with cream or nut pastes. The Belgium pralines are born.
2002: The Adventure of Monggo Begins
The Belgian man, Thierry Detournay arrives in Yogyakarta, without a plan in mind. Missing the good Belgian chocolate, he decided to make some specialties of his country.
2005: The Creation of Chocolate Monggo
The company Anugerah Mulia was founded, under which Chocolate Monggo started to produce chocolate pralines and chocolate bars. Monggo continues to develop more variants of chocolate products by combining the finest taste of Indonesian ingredients and the knowledge of its Belgian chocolatier.