Did you know that out near the Dublin Airport is a real-life Willy Wonka Chocolate Factory? Well, there is! Butler’s Chocolates are an Irish chocolate brand with a working factory just a short drive from Dublin city centre.
Butler’s Chocolates was founded in 1932 by Marion Butler under the name Chez Nous Chocolates. She made all the chocolates by hand and sold them in the George’s Street Arcade and at the horse races in town. She ran the business by herself until it was bought by the Sorensen family from Cork in 1959. Today the company has expanded and now has stores and cafes in over forty countries.
Butler’s Chocolate Factory is the only butler’s Factory in the world, and it is located right here in Dublin! The factory operates five days a week, with operations being closed on Friday evenings and weekends. Visitors can tour the factory throughout the week to learn about the history of Butler’s Chocolates, watch a working factory in action, and even make some chocolate of their own!
A visit to Butler’s Chocolates begins with a movie all about the history of chocolate and how it was first discovered. The video also gives more insight into the history of Butler’s chocolates and explains how the company made the shift from a small business to the multi-national organization that it is today. What’s more, as you watch the video you can enjoy samples of Butler’s white, dark, and milk chocolate varieties.
Next stop on the tour is the museum. The museum explains how chocolate is made and what products can be made from the cocoa bean. As you make your way around the museum, you can enjoy one of Butler’s praline truffles. You can also complete an optional scavenger hunt – a great addition for families with small children!
After wandering around the museum, it’s time to visit the factory and see how the different kinds of chocolates are made. You can watch as chocolatiers pull taffy, make different varieties of fudge, make handmade truffles, and create Butler’s many flavored chocolate bars. You can also watch the packaging and wrapping process, all of which is done by hand. As you watch the factory processes in action, you can enjoy a piece of Butler’s vanilla or chocolate fudge.
Finally, the last part of the chocolate factory tour is the experience room. In the experience room, you can first watch a live demonstration of how the flavored, filled chocolates are made up close. Afterwards, enjoy one of the freshly made filled chocolates and get ready to decorate your own chocolate animal! You can paint white chocolate onto a milk chocolate elephant, egg, or bunny and be a Butler’s chocolatier for a day. Sip on a delectable milk hot chocolate as you work on your handmade creation!
A wonderful way to end your afternoon at the Butler’s Chocolate Factory is with a visit to the Butler’s Café. There you can enjoy some more of the factory’s handmade truffles, try one of Butler’s gourmet flavoured hot chocolates, or have a cup of afternoon tea and one of Butler’s chocolate bars.
Next week I’ll be posting about an evening of Irish music, dancing, and good craic! See you then!