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Chocolatier to Open Academy in Chicago

By Chuck Sudo in Food on Feb 4, 2008 3:30PM

2008_02_callebaut.jpgOur winter just became more tolerable with the news that chocolate maker Barry Callebaut A.G. is opening a chocolate academy in Chicago. The academy, slated to open in June, will be in Callebaut's local headquarters in the Montgomery Ward building on West Chicago in River West and fulfills the company's desire to have an academy in the United States.

Barry Callebaut does about $3.6 billion in sales worldwide (some readers might remember them from our review of the Candy Expo last fall). The opening of the chocolate academy brings them in full karmic circle with regard to local confectionery lore. According to the Crain's article we linked to in this post, one of Callebaut's founding families bought Brach's through a separate firm in 1987. Callebaut then bought Brach's outright in 2003 and moved the company's headquarters to Dallas before selling the company last year. With 45 employees in its Chicago office, Barry Callebaut is expanding the size of its local offices to 27,000 square feet to accommodate the academy, where pastry chefs, bakers and other culinary pros can learn to work with chocolate.