If you follow me on social media you may well know that recently I was very excitingly invited by Thorntons to visit their chocolate factory in Derby. It's not everyday that I am asked to go and receive a lesson in being a chocolatier and have the opportunity to explore behind the scenes of such a top British chocolate brand, so of course I totally jumped at the chance.
I'm not really sure what I had expected before I got there, but one thing that really struck me was just how many people were working in the factory. I guess I had sort of expected to see just a lot of machinery and whilst there was plenty of impressive machinery in action, there were just as many people there working on making the chocolates as perfect as they could be. And it was impressive to see that a lot of what was being done was being done by hand and required skill. It was nice to see so many highly skilled chocolatier's in action clearly passionate about their jobs. It was clear that there was a real family feel to the factory.
It was great seeing how the Thorntons toffee was made and even how their chocolate boxes were put together. Getting to have a peak behind the online ordering side of things was so interesting - there was something so calming about watching the chocolatiers decorate and personalise the chocolate orders that had been placed. I wasn't even aware up until that point just how many personalised gifts Thorntons offered, I can't imagine how busy it gets at Easter and Christmas!
After lunch we had the very exciting opportunity to have a go at personalising our own chocolates, as well as making them and whilst this was super fun and super interesting, I have to say I don't think I'll be offered a job as a chocolatier anytime soon. It was at this point that I realised just how much skill and concentration the job really takes! But despite not having the most perfect-looking chocolates to take home with me, I will say that they were still absolutely delicious, but then I did use Thorntons chocolate.. so I guess I couldn't really go wrong!
Looking super glam in our bright orange hairnets! ;)
Thank you to Emily (amummytoo.co.uk) for taking this group photo of us.
Making chocolate bowls using balloons! Such a simple yet fun idea! I will be doing this with Ethan!
Spending the day at the Thorntons Factory, seeing what goes on behind the scenes and getting to have a go at creating my very own chocolates was just so much fun. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity that I will certainly never forget! A big thank you to Thorntons for kindly inviting me along for the day.
I still can't believe that these are made from chocolate!
Our group - it's always lovely to have the chance to meet up with fellow bloggers.