Zotters – Austria’s very own Charlie & the Chocolate Factory

There is a magical land of chocolate in Austria… only an hour and half away.  Even though I’m not a huge fan of chocolate, a friend was visiting us from London and she absolutely insisted we go. Chocoholics beware – read on at your own risk!

Zotter chocolate factory Austria
A real, live chocolate factory

From memory it was 15€ for entry… this included a short introductory film about the company, an audio tour and ALL YOU CAN EAT CHOCOLATE. And I’m not kidding when I say that. If you wanted to (and had the stomach for it) you could literally stay there all day walking back and forth and eating/drinking chocolate.

Mini bars to drop into warm milk to make hot chocolate... bliss!
Mini bars to drop into warm milk to make hot chocolate… bliss!

After the film (it was actually quite interesting) we put on our audio guides and got ready for the tour. But to be honest, once we hit the chocolate tasting we pretty much stopped listening. The first taste is warm liquid chocolate, but it’s the raw, bitter stuff. So, not too nice. Then as you follow the hallway the chocolate gets better and better (sweeter and sweeter).

Even for a non-chocolate lover like me, it was amazing. Everyone gets a small spoon to carry around and you use this to collect samples. There was a room full of liquid chocolate in many varieties (my favourites being coconut and coffee), a section with different flavoured chocolate pieces, a hot and cold drinking chocolate room, chocolate with fruity fillings, nougat, chocolate covered fruits and pretty much everything chocolate related you can think of. And yes, you can take as many tastings as you like. But it wasn’t long before my chocolate quota was filled and even my chocoholic friend started struggling.

Liquid chocolate... as much as you like... and there were about 20 just like this in the room.
Liquid chocolate… as much as you like… and there were about 20 just like this in the room.

The last section you pass through is the ‘Running-Chocolate’ – think Running-Sushi. Basically there are small trains carrying different chocolate flavours going around and around while you wait for your favourites to pass by. It is amazing what they have come up with and the varieties that are available. Following this you are led into a chocolate shop where you can buy what you’ve just tasted, and believe me, everyone does.

Running chocolate... divine... except for the fish one - don't do it!
Running chocolate… divine… except for the fish one – don’t do it!

And I know they say that everyone has different tastes so you can’t like everything, but my recommendation would be not to try the raspberry-fish chocolate. For me, it tasted exactly like I was licking a pier that had been covered in fish all day. Yuk!

Zotter chocolate factory Austria
So many different types

But if you’re in the area I would definitely recommend a visit to Zotters. The chocolate is tasty, made with love from quality ingredients with ethical considerations factored in… and in any case… it’s so much fun being Charlie for the day!

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