Have you ever tried a Bouchon Vaudois? I finally bought some during a recent visit to Montreux. Here are 10 facts about this special treat, which celebrates its 70th birthday in 2018.
1. Bouchon means “cork” in French, and the shape and exterior color of this sweet treat certainly resembles one. Vaudois refers to the origin of this candy—the Swiss canton of Vaud, where about one-quarter of all Swiss wine is produced.
2. In 1948, the Société Vaudoise et Romande des Patrons Pâtissiers-Confiseurs, Chocolatiers, Glaciers introduced the Bouchon Vaudois. It all started with Alfred Anex, a former president of this association, who wanted to create a new confection to represent Vaud. Legend has it that over a meal of cheese fondue, Monsieur Anex picked up a cork from bottle of wine and declared, “J’ai trouvé!” (I found it!). And, the idea for the Bouchon Vaudois was born.
3. Bouchon Vaudois appears on the list of traditional food products maintained by Patrimoine Culinaire Suisse (Culinary Heritage of Switzerland).
4. The crisp, biscuit shell of a Bouchon Vaudois contains egg whites, sugar, grated almonds and flour. Inside this shell, you will find a smooth chocolate and almond praline filling.
5. The filling for these sweet treats contains a Swiss apéritif, known as Bitter des Diablerets. Also from Vaud, this alcoholic beverage was first made in 1876.
6. Typically, Bouchons Vaudois are served as a friandise—a tiny sweet or pastry served after the dessert course with a hot beverage.
7. The Société Vaudoise et Romande des Patrons Pâtissiers-Confiseurs, Chocolatiers, Glaciers currently lists 19 confiseries that make Bouchons Vaudois.
8. In 2012, due to rising production costs, this association that oversees the production of Bouchons Vaudois, introduced a mechanized process for making the outer biscuit of these sweet treats. While they are no long 100 percent handmade, each individual candy is still filled by hand. The video below, from the Office du Tourisme du Canton de Vaud, shows how the Bouchons Vaudois are produced.
9. You can purchase Bouchons Vaudois throughout the year, which generally cost around CHF 2 per piece.
10. Bouchons Vaudois are often sold in a reusable cylindrical tin that resembles a large cork.
- Bouchons Vaudois, Office du Tourisme du Canton de Vaud
- Bouchon Vaudois, Patrimoine Culinaire Suisse
- Société Vaudoise et Romande des Patrons Pâtissiers-Confiseurs, Chocolatiers, Glaciers
- La minirévolution du Bouchon vaudois, 20minutes.ch (October 18, 2012)