The History of The Neuhaus Company
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Neuhaus' original shop in the Galeries Royales in Brussels
Neuhaus is a notable Belgian chocolatier which manufactures and sells luxury chocolates, biscuits and ice cream. The company was founded in 1857 by Jean Neuhaus, a Swiss immigrant, who opened the first store in the Galeries Royales Saint-Hubert in central Brussels. In 1912, his grandson, Jean Neuhaus II, invented the chocolate bonbon or praline.
Today, Neuhaus has over 1,500 selling points in 50 countries. All Neuhaus products are still made in Vlezenbeek, near Brussels, and are exported worldwide. In 2000, the company received the Royal Warrant of Appointment to the Belgian court.
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Having arrived in Brussels from his native Switzerland, Jean Neuhaus opened an apothecary shop in 1857 at the Galeries Royales, near the Grand Place. He began his business by covering the medicines in chocolate to make them more easy to handle. Liquorices, guimauves (similar to marshmallows) and dark chocolate tablets soon joined more traditional preparations on the display counter.
With the assistance of his son Frédéric, he spent an increasing amount of time and effort in preparing and inventing new delicacies to the point where the regular pharmaceutical products gradually ended up making way for them.
In 1912, the year of Frédéric's death, his son Jean II created the first chocolate-filled bonbons or pralines. They were immediately successful.[specify] They were followed by another innovation. Louise Agostini, Jean's wife, realised that the pralines were getting crushed inside the paper cornet bags used to wrap them up. Together with her husband, she developed a gift wrap box in 1915 which became known as the ballotin and was later patented.[when?]
Jean's son-in-law, Adelson de Gavre, took over the running of the business. In 1958, he created a series of highly acclaimed[according to whom?] pralines such as the Caprice and the Tentation which were first displayed at Expo 58. Suzanne Neuhaus, his wife, specialised in decoration and gift wrapping. The company expanded and stores soon[when?] appeared across the country and abroad.
Wittamer & Co
1.Thomas, Amy (December 22, 2011). "Brussels: The Chocolate Trail". New York Times. Retrieved 2011-12-25. "Ever since the Brussels chocolatier Jean Neuhaus invented the praline 100 years ago, the city has been at the forefront of the chocolate business. ... They are breaking away from traditional pralines — which Belgians classify as any chocolate shell filled with a soft fondant center ..."
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Experience the Best of Belgium Right from the Source
Neuhaus is a company of firsts. The inventor of the praline in 1912 and the creator of the special chocolate boxes known as ballotins in 1915, gourmet Belgian chocolate can trace its roots through the history of Neuhaus. Holding proudly to tradition, all our chocolates are produced in Belgium according to original recipes. Innovation and the genius of current chocolatiers and collaborators from the world of fine foods are infused into new creations introduced over the years into our collection. Experience the rich and varied pleasures of a Belgian chocolate assortment or discover specialties such as our all dark collection or chocolate truffles presented in luxurious boxes.
The story begins...
Jean Neuhaus settles in Brussels and opens a pharmacy in the prestigious Galerie de la Reine. He covers his medicines in a layer of chocolate to make them more palatable.
Invention of the 'praline'
Jean Neuhaus Jr. expands his grandfather’s idea replacing the medicines with fresh cream, thus creating the first filled chocolate. He calls it ‘praline’, which becomes an immediate success!
Louise Agostini, wife of Jean Neuhaus, designs an elegant gift box in which the chocolates are attractively presented. This box, called the ‘ballotin’, becomes the ‘must-have’ gift.
The chocolates 'Bonbon 13' and 'Astrid' are created and become true Neuhaus classics. Today, 75 years on, these chocolates are still made according to the original recipes.
Stars of the World Expo
Neuhaus introduces the 'Caprice' and 'Tentation' during the World Exhibition in Brussels. These refined filled chocolates reveal on the inside a nougatine biscuit, made according to a special Neuhaus recipe, and are filled by hand with fresh cream or ganache. These chocolates remain the Neuhaus icons today.
In 1959 and 1960, Belgium celebrated the weddings of Prince Albert to Paola and King Baudouin to Fabiola. To mark the occasion, Neuhaus created 4 new chocolates named after the royal family: 'Baudouin', 'Fabiola', 'Albert' and 'Paola'.
First US Neuhaus store opened in Grand Central Terminal, New York.
Neuhaus undergoes a transformation. Its boutiques are given a splendid new look, with a distinctive colour palette that includes warm coral red and elegant chestnut brown.
Washington DC welcomes a Neuhaus store in Union Station.
Neuhaus opens in the Garden State Plaza, New Jersey.
Neuhaus celebrates the opening of its flagship US store on Madison Avenue, New York.
Neuhaus moves into the New York boroughs, opening a store in Queens.
Neuhaus is the market leader in the luxury chocolate sector in Belgium. The company’s strategy is focused on international growth, and the chocolatier currently has over 1000 sales outlets in 50 countries. It is one of the few chocolate companies still manufacturing in Belgium.
This page was last modified on 22 February 2015, at 22:47.