What’s the sweetest thing anyone can ever give or receive on Christmas?
But of course, it’s chocolate! Whether you’ve been naughty or nice, there’s nothing like chocolate to put a sparkle in your eyes.
So, imagine the glow in everyone’s eyes when Maitre Chocolatier opened its fourth store located on Tomas Morato Ave. in Quezon City.
“Maitre Chocolatier is a one-stop shop for chocolate lovers,” says Edna Wong-Tan with a sweet smile.
And who doesn’t love chocolate? It is said that nine out of 10 people love chocolate — the 10th is probably lying.
Gone to chocolate heaven
Maitre Chocolatier Boutique Cafe is a piece of chocolate heaven. Holy molten lava cake! The fresh aroma of creamy, velvety-smooth chocolate is enough to send you to euphoria. You rouse your lethargic taste buds with a rich cream of mushroom soup infused with creamy Lindt white chocolate. Or how about some fresh greens drizzled with intense dark chocolate? Do you still have room for the main course, like grilled chicken in chocolate chili sauce or linguine in pesto sauce with fresh herbs and spices sitting on white chocolate sauce? Tired of the usual burger? Try the pan-fried burger oozing with chili dark chocolate sauce.
And we haven’t even gotten to the desserts yet! So, what’s for dessert?
Experience Golden Euphoria with the Ferrero hazelnut crunch cake. Or unleash your Hidden Desire with the Lindt dark chocolate moist cake. Or have your Sweet Revenge with the Lindt Molten Lava Cake! On top of the list is the Blissful Pleasure Chocolate Fondue in blanc chocolate, lait chocolate, noir chocolate, or chocolate chili, served with fresh fruits, marshmallows, and nuts.
Maitre Chocolatier uses only premium European chocolate brands such as Lindt, Villars, and Ricola from Switzerland; Ferrero Rocher from Italy; Ritter Sport and Storck (Merci, Toffifee, Riesen) from Germany; and Valor from Spain.
Chocolate from breakfast to dinner
“Here, you can have your chocolate from breakfast to dinner and in between,” Edna affirms. “We have pasta with white chocolate sauce or panini. We try to adopt some Spanish recipes that have chocolate, like dark chocolate sauce or marinated in chocolate. You can have your chocolate and bring it home, too, as we have assorted packed chocolates.”
The chocolatier behind Maitre Chocolatier is KK Wong, a certified chocoholic. “My dad started small. We were already six children when we were living in Hong Kong. It was very expensive in Hong Kong, so my dad decided to come to the Philippines where there were more business opportunities. He filled his luggage with chocolates — Toblerone, Ferrero, Van Houten, Ricola candies and went from door to door in Shoppesville selling them.”
Soon, KK Wong was putting up his first all-chocolate store. Edna recounts, “I think my dad went to Switzerland and he went into one of the chocolate stores there that offered chocolate fondue. So, in our store, we also offer chocolate fondue.”
Chocolate stores and stories
Today, Maitre Chocolatier boasts four stores: the first store on Jupiter St., Makati (60-90 seats), second store at Ayala Cebu Mall (30-50 seats), third store at Abreeza Davao Mall, and fourth store on Tomas Morato, Quezon City (the biggest with 80-100 seats). Edna Wong-Tan takes care of the marketing and sales, while her brother Ian Joseph Wong is managing director.
Edna has a favorite chocolate story that she hoards to this day. “When I was about 10 years old, I went to my dad and asked, “Daddy, can I have P20?’ He asked why. I said I was going to ask the maid to buy something. He asked what it was. I said, ‘Basta.’ My dad asked the maid and found out I asked her to buy me Choc-Nut. ”
Edna adds, “My dad was really surprised because we had all the well-known European chocolate brands and I wanted our own Choc-Nut!”
Maitre Chocolatier is surely a happy place. “Chocolates are always associated with something good — with feel-good stories,” Edna notes.
“They’re the easiest to give for Christmas, too, because the receiver will love it as much as the giver.”
Maitre Chocolatier gives chocoholics the freedom to choose the chocolates they want to give to others or to themselves. “Choose your chocolates and we will pack them for you. You can mix and match; there’s a pack that sells for as cheap as P50. There are also premium chocolates for your boss and other important people in your life. You can customize your chocolate baskets, too,” Edna suggests.
Indeed, Christmas is sweeter with chocolate!