Peering through the windows of Svaneke Chokoladeri on the square in Svaneke will quickly make your mouth water. If you can’t find the shop door in your feverish excitement to get inside and explore all those tantalising taste sensations, don’t worry: it’s in the passageway that leads to Svaneke Bryghus.
“Hands on” is Svaneke Chokoladeri’s motto, because all the chocolate there are made by hand. In fact, the only machines visible in the shop are a coating machine and a machine to keep the melted chocolate at the right temperature.
A wide variety of chocolates are made at the shop: chocolate eggs, chocolate bars with different flavoured fillings (also using unique Bornholm ingredients) and the highly popular cream puffs. Janne tells how they make up to 1,000 of them a day in peak season. And remember, they are all hand-made. Svaneke Chokoladeri is a good place to pamper yourself, buy a gift or look for a tasty delicacy to go with your after-dinner coffee.
Janne Lundberg and Daniel Mikkelsen took over the shop in October 2014, and it has been growing by leaps and bounds ever since. One of the biggest steps was when the couple also opened a shop on Rønne square. It, too, has grown over the years, starting out as just a chocolate shop, but gradually evolving into a cosy combination of chocolate shop and café. At the Rønne location, you can “upgrade” your cream puff by adding ice cream from Bornholms Ismejeri. Locally brewed beer or a cup of coffee are available – and for those who prefer pastry over chocolate, this is also on the menu. Janne is making an effort to serve gluten-free and lactose-free pastries, but she can’t promise they will always be available. Svaneke Chokoladeri also gets a number of requests for gluten-free and lactose-free chocolates, and many of their chocolates are already suitable for vegans. The shop also sells products from other local producers, such as Bülow Liquorice, The Mallows, and locally roasted coffee to take home with you.
All the chocolates in both shops are made in Svaneke by Daniel – nicknamed “Bimmer” – and two or three employees. Daniel is a qualified cook who has been working with chocolate for more than 15 years. He is proficient at his craft, which is obvious to anyone who observes the production process in the shop. Janne is on the spot whenever new products need to be developed. She is very creative and has been blogging and writing about desserts and chocolates for many years. So it only makes sense that she takes over when it comes to developing new ideas.
The chocolate from Svaneke Chokoladeri contains no artificial additives. This naturally shortens the shelf life, but few can resist for long the temptation of eating chocolate from Svaneke Chokoladeri. Excellent taste and guaranteed quality are crucial parameters to both Janne and Bimmer.
Chocolate-making workshops as part of team-building events and/or stag/hen parties can also be held in Svaneke. Surprising as it may seem, the little shop can accommodate 20 participants. If this option appeals to you, contact them as soon as possible, because the chocolate-making workshops are popular events that attract participants from all over Denmark.
Janne and Bimmer are often invited to talk about the history of their shop and their chocolate-making. The latest beneficiary of the couple’s know-how is Campus Bornholm, which houses the island’s cook training programme, where they occasionally step in to help train future cooks.
Svaneke Chokoladeri uses Callebaut chocolate from Belgium, as this brand is renowned for its quality, and Callebaut also helps out by providing feedback to Janne and Bimmer when they are developing new products.
From the outset, cream puffs with raspberry/liquorice cream filling have been the most popular product they have ever developed. But new tastes are always welcome, which is why Svaneke Chokoladeri makes good use of all its local contacts. One partner is Plantagen, just outside Svaneke, which grows all sorts of fruits and vegetables, including blueberries. Svaneke Chokoladeri preserves the berries in alcohol for at least five years before using them as filling in chocolates.
Right now, the couple are working with a botanist and nature guide to find out which wild herbs they can include in their production process. So take a peek inside the small but highly creative shop which causes so much excitement!