Born in chocolate

It all started with a love story with chocolate and the dream of a Brussels family to share its passion and art with the world.
In 1926, Pierre Draps (the father) started making pralines in his Brussels house, which soon became his chocolate workshop. When Pierre Draps dies in 1937, his son Pierre became the creative force of the company. Stepping in his father’s shoes, Pierre Jr. honed his competences and expertise and used his sense of innovation to design exquisite, new chocolate recipes.

“ I was born in chocolate…
It completely captivated me and I dedicated my entire life to this art. I lived a wonderful dream.  ”

godiva Pierre DrapsPierre Draps Jr. (1919 – 2012)

Joseph Draps, the brother of Pierre Jr came up with the name Godiva. The hair of his wife Gaby was so long and shiny that her hairdresser nicknamed her Lady Godiva. The eleventh century English legend says that Lady Godiva protested against excessive taxes that her husband Lord Leofric imposed on his populations by riding around the streets of Coventry naked on her horse, her long hair shielding her modesty. Values championed by Lady Godiva — Generosity, passion and an innovative spirit – still personify the chocolate house and remain an inexhaustible source of inspiration for the confectioner. Today, her effigy still symbolises the brand.

The Draps family open their first shop in 1945 on Brussels’ Boulevard Léopold II. Three years later, the family opens the flagship store on Brussels’ Grand Place.

Truffles  are probably Godiva’s most emblematic products — in 1946, Pierre Draps created the Truffe Originale, an intense chocolate mousse coated in a thin layer of dark chocolate and dipped into pure cocoa powder. The delicacy is a best-seller since it was first launched. Godiva’s team of master chocolatiers love nothing more than finding new versions of original recipes. The Truffe Noir Intense and the Truffe Perle Noir exemplify the most recent interpretation of the truffle.

Pierre Draps died in 2012 at the age of 93, leaving behind him a formidable legacy. During the last years of his life, Pierre remained fascinated by his art, constantly demonstrating an impressive memory for the small changes to add to recipes for caramels, chocolate coated cherries and of course, the truffles. In 2007, he created a new range of chocolates to celebrate the restoration of the original Godiva boutique situated on the most famous square in the world, the Brussels Grand-Place. “You must be patient in this trade”, he said one day. “If you go too quickly, things don’t go as they should. ”

Today, Godiva’s remarkable journey – which is characterised by passion, devotion and a never-ending love for the art of chocolate – still obeys the constant and unforgiving rhythm of the calendar – Christmas, Valentine’s day, Easter… to offer original creations packaged in boxes that have attracted passers-by for generations. The enchanting shop windows invite chocoholics from the four corners of the world to enter the shop and try the Draps family recipes. In 1968, Godiva was awarded the title of Certified Royal Warrant Holder of Belgium.

 


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