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“Zotter is a must-see”

Zotter Chocolate Factory
Ranked #1 of 15 things to do in Riegersburg
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Once upon the time around 1990 there was a master confectioner who thought that all the existing chocolate creations on the market are simply a little bit too boring. So after business hours he started to explore in the quietness of his company’s back room...
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children, Bathroom facilities, Food available for purchase, Stairs / elevator, Lockers / storage
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
42 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Zotter is a must-see”
Reviewed September 9, 2013

Smack in the center of Southern Styria’s wine country (think Tuscany with rolling hills and vineyards) and in the shadow of the impressive Riegersburg, is a - chocolate factory! And not just any manufacture: this is a ‘bean to bar’ enterprise (think Theo Chocolate in Seattle’s Fremont, just so much larger). Its founder, Josef Zotter, is a zany purveyor of ambrosia to all chocoholics. (See his www.zotter.at)

This Austrian Willy Wonka already had a career as chef and pastry maker. In 1999 he and his wife started chocolate production on his parents’ farm. Not willing to compromise and join mass market purveyors, this chocolatier revels in creating extraordinary bars and cocoa drinks. His Labooko bars feature dark and light shades in many flavors, including exotic fruits and mango lassi, milk chocolate using sheep and goat milk, and from every cocoa-producing region in the world.

The more than 300 products are not just for sale. Visitors to the spacious grounds can take a factory tour ($18 adults) with audio-guides provided in ten languages. Everyone is issued a small ceramic spoon, and then the chocolate feast begins.

A short video presentation in the auditorium presents Zotter (wacky in mismatched shoes), his approach, and the goals of his firm in crafting chocolate from cocoa beans he personally selects in their countries of origin. The process of roasting, conching, and grinding the fair-trade bean is explained. Then it’s off to the tasting.

One chocolate fountain? How about a half dozen, each offering different percentages of liquor, from 100% and very bitter to milk chocolate? That’s when the spoon comes into play. You get to taste, and taste again. Chocolate liquids come at the push of a button, one lick at a time. The next gallery is a 100-ft. wall of chocolate bars facing the production line (called a ‘chocolate street’). Each bar selection ingeniously slides down as a lever is pressed, dropping a small slice of Labooko bar into a saucer. You can eat as much as you like!

You also become familiar with the appearance, taste, and fragrance of select ingredients. Zotter is passionate about experimentation, and the sheer variety of flavorings is overwhelming. Moving upstairs, he cleverly loaded baskets of chocolate ‘lollipops’ for kids. Then visitors reach the milk bar. But not just any dairy dispensary. At the Mi-Xing bar, you can imbibe in hot chocolate drinks you have created from mini-bars and other ingredients. This pavilion also looks out over a dell with farm animals grazing in the petting zoo; the organic Eßbar restaurant is a short walk beyond. And the shop - well, it’s paradise for chocolate fans. From there it’s not far to nearby wineries or a trip to the hill-topping Riegersburg.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank Matrose
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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440 reviews from our community

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English first
Lindenberg, Deutschland
Level Contributor
28 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“for chocolate fans”
Reviewed September 5, 2013

like to taste the several kind of chocolates. see the production below, visit the chocolate theater!

Visited October 2012
Helpful?
Thank Sigrid K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
near vienna
Level Contributor
42 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“want to feel like visiting Willi Wonka?”
Reviewed August 27, 2013

The entrancefee is really worth it!
The area around is worth visiting, so is the chocolate factory! You taste all sorts they produce. So be aware to leave some space in your stomach. And be aware to fill sick afterwards.
Don't forget to visit the edible zoo.
One point is a pity, the second movie in the theatre at the beginning of the tour is fully in german with no subtitles.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank Karin F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stockholm, Sweden
Level Contributor
22 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“A lot of chocolate!”
Reviewed August 26, 2013 via mobile

Excellent museum if you enjoy eating chocolate, you won't be disappointed! Nice walk trough the factory where you get to follow the whole production line both by vision and by audio guide. Mr Zotter himself walks trough the store at the end of the museum and let visitors take pictures of themselves and himself.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Aulyone
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Budapest
Level Contributor
26 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Only for chocolate fans”
Reviewed August 22, 2013

This is the second time we visit the factory and the chocolate theatre, but definetely is is getting better. The tour starts with a film about the whole Zotter cocoa story, introducing the bean to bar philosophy and the long journet of the ingredients. After the film, the chocolate madness is starting up, you can sample everything from roasted cocoa beans, to the drinking chocolates, filled chocolates. Be careful, it is tooo much from chocolate, but you should not miss this tour. They are so creative in making the chocolate and presenting the steps of the chocolate production.
here is an edible zoo next to the factory with animals they are making their food of. Everything is organic - eggs, vegetables, tomatoes, meat, fruits, etc. The edible zoo is situated in a huge area with slopes, presenting animals and plants, and there is a restaurant where you can taste everything produced in this farm. It can be a whole day programme with kids. The staff is extremely nice and helpful.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Szilla
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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