Grenada is known as the Spice Island Of the Caribbean for its nutmeg and mace production, but with an increasing number of bean-to-bar chocolate makers, the island is on a path to becoming the chocolate capital of the Caribbean and one of the finest chocolate producing countries in the world. Thus for fine flavor cocoa and chocolate lovers, Grenada is now a must visit. With that in mind, below I highlight five chocolate experiences in Grenada not to be missed.
1. House of Chocolate Grenada
As an introduction to chocolate in Grenada, start with a visit to the House of Chocolate Grenada. Located on Young Street in the capital city of St George’s, this is a small museum with gift shop and cafe featuring Grenada’s organic cocoa & chocolate. Here you will have the opportunity to learn about the history of cocoa in Grenada along with the eight stages of chocolate production which includes harvesting, drying, roasting, winnowing, grinding and conching, refining, tempering, and moulding. At House of Chocolate Grenada, you will also be able to sample and purchase products from Grenada’s five bean-to-bar chocolate makers including the Grenada Chocolate Factory, Diamond Chocolate Factory (Jouvay Chocolate), Crayfish Bay Organics, Belmont Estate and newest on the market Tri-Island Chocolate.
2. Cocoa Tour at Belmont Estate
To get close up with chocolate production, visit Belmont Estate located in St Patrick’s an hour’s scenic drive from St George’s. Dating back to the late 1600s, Belmont Estate is the oldest working plantation on Grenada and one of the ultimate chocolate experiences as you will have the opportunity to tour their cocoa processing facilities and depending on the time of year, can participate in “walking the cocoa” which is a process for drying the cocoa beans. There might even be a demonstration of “dancing the cocoa” which is part of the process to polish cocoa beans with feet. Beyond touring the cocoa processing facilities and seeing where their chocolate is made, you can also explore Belmont Estate’s organic farm, gardens, heritage museum and have a tasty lunch in their restaurant serving up Grenadian cuisine and desserts.
3. Rum & Chocolate Pairing at RumBoat Retreat
Located in the picturesque fishing village of Gouyave, RumBoat Retreat in Grenada is a small hotel and tour operator offering a wide variety of experiences, and one for chocolate lovers to consider is the Rum & Chocolate pairing. During my visit, we sampled four different rums paired with four different chocolates which were made by the proprietor Lisette Davis. As Davis is a global rum expert, RumBoat Retreat has a collection of over 100 rums so pairing can be customized based on preference, but you can start with rums from Grenada and branch out to pairing chocolate with dark or white rums from all across the globe. And beyond the Rum & Chocolate pairing, RumBoat Retreat also offers Rum & Cigar Pairing, Rum Master Class and a Ti Punch Class. You can also enjoy a leisurely lunch or dinner on the terrace of RumBoat Retreat which has spectacular views of the sea.
4. Chocolate Skin Treatments at Blue Haven Spa, True Blue Bay Boutique Resort
One of the more unique chocolate experiences in Grenada requires a visit to the Blue Haven Spa at True Blue Bay Boutique Resort. On offer at Blue Haven Spa are seven different chocolate skin treatments done with 100% Grenadian cocoa which helps to detoxify the skin from impurities. Treatments include Chocolate Facial, Chocolate Body Wrap, Moca Body Scrub, Cocoa Bath Soak, Chocolate Soak, Chocolate Manicure, Chocolate Pedicure and Chocolate Full Body Massage. Intrigued, I opted for the Blue Haven Spa Chocolate Body Wrap which was a bit messy but heavenly at the same time. My whole body was covered with a chocolate body scrub and then wrapped which allowed toxins to release, dead skin cells to fall off leaving my newly exposed fresh skin feeling soft and with a beautiful glow.
5. Grenada Chocolate Festival
The above four chocolate experiences in Grenada can be done at any time throughout the year. However, the ultimate chocolate experience in Grenada requires visiting in May for the annual Grenada Chocolate Festival. Launched in 2014 by Magdalena Fielden a chocolate lover and proprietor of True Blue Bay Boutique Resort, the Grenada Chocolate Festival last about nine days and provides numerous opportunities to learn about cocoa and chocolate production while exploring Grenada.
One of the chocolate makers to visit during the Grenada Chocolate Festival is The Grenada Chocolate Company whose founders helped to reinvigorate the Grenadian chocolate industry by forming the Organic Cocoa Farmers’ and Chocolate-Makers’ Cooperative in 1999. The Grenada Chocolate Company then became the first bean-to-bar chocolate maker during this century. This was revolutionary as, before then, cocoa farmers not just in Grenada but across the globe would sell their cocoa beans to mass market chocolate makers which resulted in low prices as there were too many participants in the value chain.
Now with an expanding chocolate industry in Grenada, there are five bean-to-bar chocolate makers and all are featured at the Grenada Chocolate Festival at a wide variety of events showcasing the exciting and unique ways that cocoa and chocolate is used in food, art, beauty, fashion, etc. One of the most relaxing is the chocolate yoga meditation. This is a yoga flow class with mindful chocolate eating meditation which sounds a bit odd but is quite a pleasant experience. That said, have you tried Grenada chocolate before? And if not, will you be heading there soon to partake in one of these five chocolate experiences in Grenada? Hopefully YES, and so check out our general list of top things to do in Grenada.