By Valeska Schietinger
Recovering chocoholics watch out – there is a new place in town to fulfil all your wildest, (edible!) chocolate fantasies.
Groningen’s newest chocolate bar Quetzal, located at the Oude Boteringestraat has more to offer than just the twenty-one different flavours of chocolate milk displayed on their menu.
The concept of the store is to offer products which include chocolate in all sorts of ways.
By including smoothies, milkshakes, and tasty snacks such as brownies, waffles and macaroons, Quetzal provides a wide variety for sugar addicts to choose from.
Starting in Belgium in 2001, Quetzal has managed to expand to currently thirteen stores, which, besides Belgium, are located in the Netherlands and Germany.
The franchise’s name Quetzal was chosen wisely. It is derived from a bird in Guatemala, the country where the fair-trade chocolate for the product comes from. Since its opening in early March this year, Quetzal has become a hot spot for students, and not just those looking for a quick cup of hot chocolate.
“People come to work here as well, you can just sit here and enjoy a drink”, Judith Muijsson, the owner of the chocolate bar, explained to The Scoop.
Muijsson is not a newcomer in the food business. Not only does she present the confidence of being experienced in what she does, she also speaks with joy about her job. Being a wine expert and pâtissier for almost twenty-five years, she brings an almost unrivalled expertise to her passion for all things sweet.
“I’ve always been present in the food business, and chocolate as well as wine is my passion,” she said.
Not only did she turn this enthusiasm for chocolate into her job, she also pursued Marketing and Communication studies at Hanze at a later stage in her life.
It certainly seems that her experience working in product development has been a great asset looking at the variety of products Quetzal offers. Not only are all her flavours a result of both individual tasting tests and collaborations with Belcolade, a Belgian chocolate producer, but by also listening to feedback from the regulars in her bar.
The customer always comes first in Muijsson’s world, and her people-first approach comes across throughout our entire visit.
With this in mind, Muijsson let us in on a sneak preview of what the following month at Quetzal has to offer – ‘Freak Shakes!’ And yes, it’s time to prepare your taste buds for imaginative ecstasy.
This creative concoction involves milkshakes combined with your favourite sweets, different toppings and sauces and more often than not, a generous dash of whipped cream.
The ‘Freak Shakes’s’ wider popularity as a food trend has skyrocketed in recent years, in large part due to Instagram posts and the younger clientele it brings with it. It’s no surprise then that Muijsson agreed when we asked her if her new idea will be a success.
As Muijsson told The Scoop, there are plans to offer her customers a small terrace outside the store so they can enjoy their milkshakes and smoothies in the sun. With spring being right around the corner, Quetzal will definitely be one of the city’s most popular spots.