At Puro Chocolate we tell you how three Austrian immigrants and one Polish immigrant created the recipe for one of the best-selling chocolates in our country and that most identifies us worldwide as Venezuelans: the Toronto.
Sometimes coincidences can bring very good things, and this is how the story of one of the most famous chocolates in Venezuela begins: the Toronto.
The coincidence that its creators decided to emigrate to Venezuela at the beginning of the forties, in the middle of World War II, made them together achieve one of the most difficult chocolate recipes to create, but so rich that it has lasted for more than 70 years, Toronto's.
Its creators, the Pole Ernst Weitz and the Austrian brothers Rodolfo, Roberto and Fernando Beer, who, although they knew each other from having worked together in Vienna, at the Casali liquor factory, did not travel to Venezuela at the same time, nor did they plan to do so.
Fleeing from the Nazis, Weitz emigrated to our country to work in Maracaibo, Zulia state, but soon traveled to Caracas to meet up again with the Beer brothers, who, to his surprise, arrived in the country also fleeing from the war and decided to mount, for their knowledge in pastry and candy, a store in Sabana Grande of products of this type that they called La Vienesa.
Weitz was an industrial confectioner and with his former bosses (the Beer brothers), with whom he returns to work at the La Vienesa pastry shop, he is part of the founding team of one of the most important chocolate shops in the country, Savoy.
This is how Toronto was made
The work of this Polish immigrant in the area of food production focused on developing machinery, processes, managing temperatures and packaging, solving problems and turning them into products for mass consumption, as he said in an interview granted in 2014 to the journalist Zinnia Martínez at 90 years of age.
In Caracas, the Beer brothers associated in 1941 with John Miller, a Venezuelan who worked in the production of chocolate, who brought specialized machinery from Scotland to make it. They register the company Savoy Candy Compañía Anónima and its first product, a bar milk chocolate, they call it Savoy.
Eight years later, in 1949, the company creates new products with the help of Weits, including the Toronto.
In this creation process, Weits was in charge of what he knew and liked the most, which was to make the method so that this bonbon would remain as we know it today, and for that, between trial and error, he managed to give that hazelnut three covers . The first, soft chocolate with hazelnut paste; the second, only chocolate; and, the third, of polished shine.
In the only interview that can be obtained on the Internet from Weits, he says that the first coverage of the Toronto was very difficult to work with, but that once the process and machinery for the elaboration of the Toronto was developed, everything became very easy.
However, to reach the final result, he confesses, “it was not that simple”, and, he adds, that in this type of process “it never is”.
a candy of love
This chocolate bonbon, which the transnational Nestlé kept with the purchase of the Savoy company at the end of the eighties, is related to special moments in the life of the Venezuelan linked to love, family, and friendship.
The most famous commercials of this brand of chocolates reinforce this marketing strategy, such as the spot where a model appears dressed as the actress from the movie the girl in red, the platonic love of a businessman who accidentally finds her on the street during a recording.
As well as that of a young cupid who, in the middle of his speech about love, explains that the best way to express it is by giving away a toronto.
Venezuelans in the country and around the world recognize Toronto as a Venezuelan tradition, just like dishes such as the hallaca and the pavilion; landscapes such as Ávila or Angel Falls; or musical rhythms such as the drum or the joropo.
The Venezuelan blogger Angélica Berríos, who lives in Puerto Rico, in her attempt to bring Torontonians closer and make them reach more Venezuelans who live in other countries of the world, published on her blog https://www.bizcochosysancochos.com/ a homemade recipe for this chocolate that called chocolate and hazelnut bonbons, that you can find in that link and that are very easy to prepare.