A Brief History Of Chocolate Truffles

We all love chocolate truffles and associate them with special occasions or the simple pleasure of tasting good chocolate. But whose idea was it to introduce such a delightful dessert option? And why is it named after a very rare and precious fungus? What flavours are there? Here is a brief introduction to the chocolate truffle.

Unfortunately there is no definite answer to who invented truffles, even less information on the time of invention. It is mostly believed that truffles were first made between 1890 and the 1920s.

According to our favourite legend, truffles happened by accident, just like many other important discoveries. The legendary French chef Auguste Escoffier is thought to have worked on a pastry cream when he carelessly poured the contents of the hot cream into a bowl of chocolate chunks instead of the intended bowl of sugared egg. He realized that he was easily able to form balls with the chocolate paste that formed as a result of his accident. The name ‘truffle’ came from the chocolate balls’ strong physical resemblance to the valuable truffle fungus once he had covered his invention in cocoa powder.

Nowadays, there are numerous varieties of truffles depending on the unique appearances of chocolate truffles across different countries. While the ‘European truffle’ refers to a truffle made with syrup and a cocoa powder and milk powder base, a ‘Belgian truffle’ is also known as praline as it is filled with buttercream, ganache or nut. Other types include the American truffle, the French truffle and the Swiss Truffle.

When it comes to flavourings, the sky is the limit. Many popular truffles contain a small amount of alcohol, e.g. brandy such as Marc de Champagne but also other spirits like whiskey. The Charbonnel et Walker Pink Marc de Champagne Truffles are one of our most popular, followed closely by or Milk and Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel. Absolutely divine!

The History of Wedding Favours

The tradition of giving a small gift to all wedding guest has a long history. A small gift from a newly wed couple was believed to bring good luck. Depending on the country and social class the newly weds would give their guests handcrafted trinkets, a candle and other small tokens of good fortune. In England the earliest account of a wedding favour dates back to the 16th century: to represent a couple’s love bond, each of the guests would be given love knots made of lace and ribbon.

Sugar was an expensive ingredient and thought to have medicinal properties. From the 17th century, wedding favours among the European aristocracy took the forms of sugar lamps or confectionary presented in a box made of gold, porcelain or crystal, and decorated with gemstones. It was often called bomboniere or Bonbonnière. Charbonnel et Walker, famous for its innovative packaging, were Leopold de Rothschild’s wedding favour chocolates of choice when he married Marie Perugia, 1881 in London. T

he Ladies Monthly Magazine described Charbonnel et Walker packaging in 1890: “Their sweet boxes are real bijoux, and when the bonbonniere is empty of its sweet contents, the box will form either a jewel casket, or a handkerchief box, etc., and is always a little gem of artistic work.”

With the gradual increase of sugar’s availability and decline of its price, aspiring middle classes enthusiastically embraced the trend of sweet wedding favours until eventually it became a widely accepted norm across the whole social strata. Nowadays couples tend to choose wedding favours that best represent their love story and complement their individual wedding theme or decoration. Just as in the beginnings of the tradition, confectionary wrapped in beautiful packaging is still the most popular, and safest choice.

Why not order truffle gifts for your wedding guests? This May, you can get a 10% discount on your orders from our wedding chocolate gifts collection.

Our Favourite Father’s Day Gifts

21st June 2015 is Father’s Day. Despite it only being a week away, many of us are still looking for that special gift. We have put together our favourite suggestions from Charbonnel et Walker.  Here is our guide to the perfect Father’s Day gifts.

1. The Organized Father

Smythson has a variety of classic stationery, perfect for the father who likes to put his thoughts on paper and stay organized.

2. The Stylish Father

For the effortlessly stylish Father, Tom Ford offers timeless and elegant footwear with these leather toe Chelsea Boots.

3. The Sports Focused Father

For the sports focused Father, service with a smile and the Wilson ‘Federer’, built to the personal specifications of the world’s No 1.  With Wimbledon fast approaching he will appreciate the practice!

4. The International Jet Setter Father

For those Father’s who travel frequently, this grooming ensemble from Murdock fits the credentials as a travel set on the go.

5.  The Outdoors Father

For Father’s who embrace the great outdoors, why not gift him with a lovely hat? Our favourite Men’s summer hat is the Superfine Montecristi Folder from Lock & Co

6. Fun Loving Father
For all father’s who like to be seen and heard, this quirky bow tie from Chester Barrie could become an important wardrobe staple.

7. Last, but not least: for Fathers with a sweet tooth, look no further than Charbonnel et Walker. Our Dark Sea Salt Caramel Truffles are a popular choice amongst our male customers. If your Father is a sea salt caramel fan, this box of decadent truffles can be purchased for £10 with our special Father’s Day offer!

Our Favourite Alfresco Dining Recipes

Not only is it National Picnic Week this week, but the weather seems to be picking up across most of the UK. Why not make the most of it by eating alfresco? Here is a roundup of our favourite recipes that are best enjoyed in the breeze of summer.


Begin your alfresco dining session with one of our delicious first course suggestions.

Thai Style Salmon and Cod Fishcakes

This exotic and simple dish by Franglais Kitchen provides a wonderful starter for all ages, especially those slightly more curious about new flavours. Don’t forget the cucumber for a cooling effect.

Pear, Walnut and Feta Salad with Warmed Herb Honey

This dish by The Hedge Combers is light and delicious. The pear, walnut and feta salad is a perfect choice for a cooling starter to your alfresco dinner session.

Mushroom and Cheese Tart

We like this rustic take on the classic cheese tart by My Golden Pear.


These three tasty main dishes are unique crowd pleasers, guaranteed to be the highlight of your alfresco experience.

Blood Orange Roasted Chicken with Parsnips, Maple Syrup & Pecans

Its intense colours and novel combinations contribute to Lau Sunday Cooks’ being a must-try dish for those looking to make a culinary impression in the summer seasons.

Gnocchetti Sardi Pasta with Parma Ham, Rocket and Tomatoes

Just like alfresco dining originated from Italy, so does the theme of this vibrant looking pasta dish by Julie’s Family Kitchen – can be enjoyed just as much cold as it can be warm.

Roast Beef Wraps with Cranberry Relish and Spinach

These simple, yet delicious roast beef wraps by Maison Cupcake are ideal for packed lunches in the summer, picnics and garden buffets.


Finish off your al-fresco dining with a flavoursome dessert that is sure to end your dinner on a high note.

Pimm’s-infused Strawberry and Spinach Shortcakes with Coconut Cream

It’s hard to imagine a British summer’s day without Pimm’s. Veggie Desserts dared to be creative with this tradition and introduced Pimm’s-infused shortcakes, which will no doubt, impress your guests just as much as they did us.

Fruit Salad with Rose Syrup, Greek Yogurt & Pistachios

This wonderful fruit salad by Rachel Phipps is easy to make and just right for anyone who prefers a lighter dessert option.

Grilled Nectarines with Saffron and Lavender Syrup

This unusual and fascinating dessert by Cook Sister is inspired by Jeanne’s love and support for South African and its fruit farmers, and tastes delicious.

Cappuccino Truffles

Our delicate cappuccino truffles with its distinct coffee flavour are the best choice for after-dinner coffee connoisseurs.


These surprising combinations for appetizing and refreshing drinks will add an exquisite touch to your three-course al fresco meal.

Tomato Tea

Tomato Tea does not usually come to mind when thinking of summer, yet Fuss Free Flavours‘ take on it is refreshing, in each and every way.

Peach and White Sangria

What better way to celebrate the evening sun with an original white wine Sangria such as the one offered in this recipe by Amuse Your Bouche?

Beetroot Gazpacho Juice

The beetroot gazpacho juice by Hemsley & Hemsley is very versatile – it can be seen as a soup, a starter or a fancy aperitif. We like to enjoy it as the latter, and are sure your guests will too.

What is your chocolate personality?

Chocolate consumption is an emotional affair. More than with any other food we eat, chocolate is adored not just for its flavour and texture but the way it makes us feel. Nearly all of us have our clear favourites when it comes to choosing a chocolate and when doing so we most likely make the same choice time and time again. It comes as no surprise that psychologists have identified a clear connection between our choice of chocolate and our personality traits.

Doctor Murray Langham aka Dr Chocolate is without a doubt the leading voice in this chocolate personality debate. Years of fieldwork and patient observations lead him to the discovery of rather convincing patterns between people’s personality or state of their mind and their tastes in chocolate.

According to Langham, those who favour dark chocolate tend to be pragmatic problem solvers who are excited about the future. Whereas those who prefer milk chocolate are romantic at heart and like to dwell on the past. White chocolate aficionados have an innate sense of fairness and believe they have the power of the universe at their command.

Different fillings within the chocolate also appeal to different personalities. Traditional people tend to like peppermint flavoured filling. Creative types often go for coconut filling. Hard-caramel filling appeals to methodical go-getters, fruity flavours on the other hand to people who dislike routine and prefer to change their focus frequently.

Different personality traits also manifest themselves in the choice of the chocolate’s shape. If selecting on the basis of shape alone, extroverts tend do go for round shaped chocolates. Introverts and shy individuals prefer square or triangle chocolates.

The theory is still open to debate and needs further empirical evidence. The next time you hold a dinner party, why not offer your guests a Charbonnel et Walker chocolate selection box? Take note of your guests’ choices and put Langham’s theory to the test. Let us know your findings!

Alice Through The Looking Glass for Charbonnel et Walker

British brand Alice Through The Looking Glass has collaborated with British Master chocolatier Charbonnel et Walker on a delightful range of beautifully illustrated chocolates and truffles. These include the Mad Hatter’s Top Hat truffles, the Alice Through The Looking Glass chocolate gift box selection and a range of mini milk chocolate bar sets to include ‘ Humpty Dumpty’ and ‘ Queen Alice’.

Alice Through The Looking Glass reference rare Alice iconography to create new and beautiful additions to their collections. The Charbonnel et Walker collaboration can be seen at the Alice Through The Looking Glass pop up shop at Fenwick of Bond Street and for the  brand launch at Harrods, London on the second floor. Here you can find our delicious chocolates and truffles amongst first editions, Salvador Dali prints, the Alice Through The Looking Glass chessboard, ceramics and contemporary gifts.

Supper London Delivery

We are delighted to partner with Supper London. A fine selection of our signature chocolates and truffles from iconic favourites Pink Marc de Champagne Truffles to Milk Caramel Sea Salt Praline and one of our latest delicious truffle flavours, Pistachio Truffles. Available Monday to Saturday 10am -6pm. Please click here to place your order for Home Delivery. 

Sign up for our newsletter and receive 10% off your next order.

Sale items are excluded from this discount.

Newsletter promo

Click here to read our privacy policy