“I could give up chocolate but I’m not a quitter.” Unknown
Chocolate, chocolate, chocolate! Who doesn’t love chocolate? Well I for one most certainly do, I’m a self-confessed chocoholic so I was very excited (again) to be invited to the official launch of the newly opened Guylian Belgian Chocolate Café located in the luxury arcade of Yas Mall. The elegant open-air café, the first of its kind in the region, was officially opened with a ribbon cutting ceremony by the Belgian Ambassador to the UAE, her excellency Dominique Mineur and of course copious amounts of the finest Belgian chocolates.
Just like my first visit as part of the Dine Around Yas Mall event, the café’s launch event showcased samples from its menu. Myself and fellow guests were treated to hot chocolate, savoury canapés, exquisite miniature cakes, decadent chocolate desserts and of course signature Belgian praline sea horses and hearts presented on three-tiered plates afternoon tea style.
Founded in the late 1950s by Belgian chocolatier Guy Foubert, Guylian started out as a small homemade business in Sint-Niklaas, Belguim, where he made artisanal truffles and pralines with his wife Lilliane (Guylian is actually a combination of their names). Foubert created the first seashell shaped chocolates filled with his signature hazelnut praliné filling and Lilliane designed the shiny marbled look and delicate sculptured shapes. With the success of their chocolate venture they opened their first factory in 1988 and now the wide range of milk, white and dark Belgian chocolates are in the top ten best-selling boxed chocolate brands and distributed worldwide.
More recently Guylian opened three Chocolate Cafés in Australia, one in South Korea and now the newest Abu Dhabi location. As well as the famous sea-inspired chocolates, Guylian also imports its full range of chocolates from Belgium to the UAE and offers its gourmet products such as Guylian chocolate spread, cocoa powder and Belgian chocolate dip in the retail section of the café. Everything can be purchased separately or made into a hamper for a gift with custom wrapping, such a perfect present or perhaps just a special treat to yourself.
Don’t be put off visiting the cafe if you are a non-chocolate lover (is there such a thing?) as the café menu offers a wide assortment of salads, sandwiches, coffees, juices, cakes, desserts, ice-creams alongside the world-famous chocolates. Open for Belgian breakfast, lunch and dinner or perfect for a coffee stop or afternoon tea. Belgian chef Peter Goossens of the three Michelin starred Hof van Cleve fine dining restaurant in Belgium designed the menu incorporating Guylian’s milk, white and dark Belgian chocolate, hazelnuts and traditionally made roasted hazelnut praliné filling into unique recipes for café visitors to enjoy.
Thank you Guylian Café for a fabulously indulgent afternoon and for the delicious chocolates in my goody bag. If like me chocolate is your kryptonite, you really must visit this chocolatey heaven immediately and let the lovely staff look after you, make sure you try the hot chocolate too.
GUYLIAN BELGIAN CHOCOLATE CAFÉ
Location: Luxury Arcade, Yas Mall
Open: Every day from 10am until 10pm.
I was invited to attend this event but all the views are all my own. Unless otherwise stated, all photos on this page © Jo Brett 2015. All rights reserved.
All views are my own based on my experience. Unless otherwise stated, all photos on this page © Jo Brett 2015. All rights reserved.