This classy and minimalist boutiqueacross Lake Lucerne is a refreshing departure from the folksy décor employed by most Swiss chocolate shops. The cool, contemporary interiors complement Chef Fabian Rimann’s modern and international take on chocolates: pralines with grappa, dragées with California almonds, chocolatecovered caramel with Tahitian vanilla, and chocolate-coated fruit bars. Traditionalists, though, will enjoy the Grand Cru dark chocolate bars made from hand-selected South American and Madagascar cacao.
6004 Lucerne, Switzerland
Tel. +41 41 418 7090
Confiserie Sprüngli AG
This venerable Zurich institution serves an array of chocolate products beyond the traditional pralines, truffles, and solid bars. The colorful Sprüngli shop along the posh Bahnhofstrasse is a favorite among locals and tourists who willingly fall in line for the special hot chocolate and bite-sized macaroons called Luxemburgli. Another popular treat is their Truffes du Jour, ready-to-eat chocolate truffles that are made by hand right in front of you.
8022 Zürich, Switzerland
Tel. +41 44 224 4740
This Geneva landmark is proof that the French-speaking part of Switzerland can produce chocolates at par—or even better—than the legendary chocolatiers of Paris. Their delightful Pavé Glacé de Genève chocolates were patterned after the shape of Geneva’s historic pavement stones. Made from couverture with 60 percent cocoa, these original delicacies are freshly made in the shop premises and need to be eaten immediately after purchase.
Rue de Rive 4
1204 Geneva, Switzerland
Tel. +41 22 311 4286
This family-owned chocolatier now oversees branches in Singapore and New York, but the Zurich-based company still applies traditional methods of chocolate making. All their products are handmade and only use milk from Swiss cows, and cacao beans from the best farms in Africa and Latin America. Teuscher is best known for their hand-rolled truffles and their widely copied champagne truffles (using Dom Pérignon, no less).
8001 Zürich, Switzerland
The Swiss invented chocolate-covered hazelnut cream and Walder, in the charming lakeside city of Nuechatel, makes some of the best chocolates I’ve tasted. Established in 1946, their one and only shop in the historic old town also specializes in fresh chocolate squares in a dizzying array of combinations, truffles, pralines, and chocolate-covered pastries the size and shape of softballs!
Angle rue Seyon-Hôpital
2000 Neuchatel, Switzerland
Tel. +41 32 725 2049
The chocolate brand founded by Rudolf Läderach in 1962 is best known for inventing the process of producing the thin hollow truffle shells widely used by professional chocolatiers all over the world. Läderach is also famous for their freshly made chocolate—thick sheets that can be broken into bars orsquares and sold by the gram. As of last count, they offer 30 varieties of fresh chocolate—from classic dark, chili lime, to pepper strawberry. Their products are sold in both Läderach and Merkur stores across Switzerland.
4051 Basel, Switzerland
Tel. +41 43 322 3080
First appeared on Vault Magazine Issue No. 6, 2012