Bruges has chocolate for whatever ales you.
The city, like others in Flanders, is known for both its chocolate and its beer, and among those being particularly creative with chocolate in Bruges is The Chocolate Line, which has a store that among other things sells smallish, circular pieces of chocolate in the type of plastic bottles commonly associated with the likes of vitamin and iron supplements.
The bottles — marked by purple crosses — are labelled Chocolate Pills.
But could eating a confectionery that has long been associated with trips to the dentist really deliver health benefits?
Well, says Marco Frank of Visit Flanders, quite possibly, adding there’s evidence that suggests it may help with cardiovascular issues.
The Chocolate Line in turn jokingly argues that the source of chocolate is the cacao bean, and so chocolate can be viewed as a plant and therefore eating it can be compared to eating a salad.
Chocolate is big business in Belgium, with Frank reporting the country produces hundreds of thousands of metric tonnes of it annually, with much of it exported. “We do like to share our chocolate.”
Flanders chocolate creativity was particularly on display during Halloween, with stores routinely selling the likes of chocolate skulls, while The Chocolate Line was offering such eye-catching items as skeletons carefully fashioned from white chocolate and then carefully attached to slabs of dark chocolate.
And Frank adds those visiting a Flanders chocolate store can expect to see that kind of inspiration.
“For us, chocolate is an art,” he states.