US Favored over Portugal in Chocolate World Cup

With all due respect to our worthy opponents in tonight’s futebol match, the US definitely has the edge over Portugal – if we go by chocolate.   And at Voilà Chocolat, we always go by chocolate.

Here are the facts behind our sweet assertion: Americans buy $20bn of chocolate annually, while the Portuguese buy perhaps 1-2% as much. 

May tonight’s score come out as lopsided.

Worse, back in 1502, Portuguese-born explorer Christopher Columbus received some cacao beans from a chief in the new world, but he did not understand what the beans were and thought the gift was worthless.  It would take another 80 years before other Europeans finally began to ship cacao back home for their countrymen to enjoy. 

Despite that poor start, we must give credit that Portugal does bring something special to the world of chocolate nowadays: the annual Óbidos Chocolate Festival.

For 12 days every year, more than 200,000 visitors beseige the small village of Óbidos in central Portugal to taste all kinds of chocolates and desserts, take chocolatiering courses, and cheer professionals competing for glory on the international chocolate stage. So Portugal does have that going for them.

But more importantly tonight, there’s glory to be won on the international stage of SOCCER.  Yes, Europe, Africa and South America, we said “SOCCER."


[cake/photo credit: Doce Fentação bakery]