So, here’s a question. Why do we celebrate Valentine’s Day by giving chocolate?
The connection between the two, chocolate and this day of love, seems to be a natural marriage of two thoughts – I want to show the one I love how special they are AND chocolate is an aphrodisiac, indulgent, and sensual!
Chocolate has been consumed as a drink for over 5,000 years for exactly this belief. The Aztec ruler, Montezuma, would drink cup after cup after cup of cacao every day, especially before snuggling up with one of his girlfriends. They believed in cacao’s abilities to make everyone a little more “in the mood” so to speak.
The origin of Valentine’s Day is attributed to various early Christian martyrs named Valentine, but it’s first real appearance seemed to be in Chaucer’s 1382 poem, Parlement of Foules, where he describes the nature of love when “every bird cometh to choose his mate” on “seynt Voantynes day.”
Throughout Medieval times and progressively in the following centuries, Valentine’s Day developed as an increasingly popular late winter-early spring holiday associated with love and courtship. Songs, poetry and roses symbolized love in all its forms. The drink “chocolate” was considered the ultimate indulgence. In France, for example, drinking chocolate was consumed throughout the court and Madame du Barry was said to use chocolate mixed with amber to stimulate her lovers.
Eating chocolate didn’t really make an appearance until the 1800s. Victorians loved showering their significant others with gifts and cards starring that very romantic God, Cupid. Richard Cadbury capitalized on this by designing heart-shaped boxes starring the little cherub. What was inside? Cadbury’s new invention “eating chocolates”! The boxes could be saved to store mementos and love letters after the chocolates were gone. So romantic! He is actually credited with inventing the heart shaped box, but historians don’t really agree on that one.
And the rest is history! The boxes sold like crazy as a symbol of love and indulgence for your special someone. They have continued to be replicated for over 150 years. Now, we can’t even think about Valentine’s Day without thinking about the yummy night of treats in store for us.
We’ve got our own Valentine’s Day traditions here at the shop. To see what we make to help you celebrate, visit: https://www.lacascadeduchocolat.com/valentines-day-collection/