I sure can guarantee you that someone who has worked really hard on their dreams, can sit with you and chat for hours even if it's a really busy day for them and tell you a story about everything they've built.
Thomas and Elaine agreed to meet with me a week before Easter.
- Easter, one of the busiest festivals for a chocolatier.
- Thomas and Elaine, co-owners and chocolatiers at Mälarchocolaterie
- Mälarchocolaterie, the leading chocolaterie in Västerås, Sweden spinning batches of dark chocolate enrobed-bonbons in the most unique yet classic flavour pairings since the past 20 years.
Least to say that I left that afternoon with utmost gratitude in my heart towards the two of them who whole heartedly shared so many little stories with me. Over 20 years ago, Elaine quit her job at one of the leading Asian airlines and moved from Hong Kong with Thomas to Sweden. Ever since, there has been no turning back for them. From hand-enrobed bonbons to now a full fledged chocolate enrober that is personally handled by the two of them.
We sure do know for a fact how small business owners, specially in European countries rely least on big teams and outsourced functions of a business but seeing the two of them taking care of the process with such precision and passion left me in absolute awe.
That is Thomas smearing some pure Cacao Butter on his face. He said this is his secret to keeping his skin so young :)
Thomas said "I can tell you a story about everything that you're seeing here in my lab" From the tables, to the fridges or even the big Indian rice grinding machine they had, there was a story.
He walked to the fridge and brought out a sweet fragrant tray of ganache and said " Try this"! It was an Aronia (aka Chokeberries in English) infused ganache. They had just plucked it from the local area and pressed it to create this lovely pairing!
As a part of the Swedish constitution, everyone has the right to access nature - walk/ sleep in/ pluck fruit or just sit by! It's called the "Freedom to Roam". One of the popular Noric flavours on their menu is the Sea buckthorn dark chocolate bonbon.
I'm telling you, it was after a long long time that I felt so intrigued by how much hard work they have put into their dreams. It was almost unbelievable to hear that they've driven a giant truck from Sweden to Paris - four years in a row!!! to participate in Salon du Paris.
The first time that they visited India was in 1991 on the day of the Indian Prime Minister, Rajiv Gandhi's assassination. So after an afternoon in Mumbai, they flew back. The second time was in 1992 during the Bombay riots, when their flight got cancelled and the third time, their flight was diverted to Karachi due to a flood in Mumbai. So even though they could never really visit India so far, they had an exciting flavour inspired by our cuisine- A Curry Chocolate. It just happened to be that just like their attempt to visit India, this flavour pairing was not so successful! :)
It's never so much about what you do but mostly about how you do it. The two of them manage procurement, sales, production, packaging and marketing all by themselves. It's only during the festive season that they hire help but otherwise, it's the two of them running the show and how!
Elaine shared a really exciting concept where they have been hosting Chocolate Tasting events from Day one and that has helped them reach more people with their unique flavour pairings. "During the pandemic we started hosting Digital Chocolate Tasting events and the response has been overwhelming" , said Elaine.
Ask me what that is and I might tell you that we could be hosting a " Rosarté x Mälarchocolaterie Digital Chocolate Tasting " very soon for all our folks in India <3
Stay inspired and keeping working hard on your dreams