Dalareich Chocolate House in Tagbilaran City is Bohol’s First Chocolate Factory
What if we tell you that the chocolate we are so used to eating – isn’t actually made with pure chocolate?
In Bohol, we met Dalareich Polot, the proprietor of Bohol’s Dalareich Chocolate House in Tagbilaran City who also manages a tableya (cacao) business with her family.
Dalareich Chocolate House in Tagbilaran City
It was Dalareich’s grandmother that started their tableya and sikwate (a native hot chocolate drink) business where they would sell their products in wet markets and sari-sari stores. The business was then passed on to Dalareich’s mother who then taught her and her siblings everything about cacao – from its sourcing, processing, and selling.
It was this small business that helped Dalareich and her siblings finish schooling. Since then, her love for chocolate has flourished and her dream to make chocolate grew fonder.
Ms. Dalareich Polot
In 2014, Dalareich was able to make her chocolate-making dreams come true when she was accepted to study the craft in Belgium. This was an all-expense-paid two-month course that paved the part for Dalareich’s tableya business.
During her immersion in Belgium, she learned that most of the chocolates sold commercially aren’t made with pure chocolate as they are added with artificial flavors. This then prompted her to educate people about chocolate and chocolate-making.
As part of her mission to educate, she initiated projects to rehabilitate cacao farms so that farmers would know the true worth of cacao. She also started the “Adopt a Tree” project to rehabilitate and preserve Bohol’s cacao heritage.
She also launched “Ginto Chocolates” in her province, a fair trade product using beans grown by local farmers. Dalareich chose to name her chocolate “Ginto,” as a reference to the past when cacao was used as a form of currency.
Dalareich holds tours to her factory and to the local farms. This allows tourists to immerse themselves in a whole day experience to discover chocolate like never before. These tours are available for booking through the Dalareich Chocolate House website. She also holds workshops at their Chocolate House, a part of Dalareich’s advocacy to reeducate the locals as well as tourists, about chocolate.
When you visit their Chocolate House in Tagbilaran City, you will be greeted with a cup of hot chocolate that they give out for free to everyone who visits the shop.
The Sikwate, traditional Hot Chocolate made from Tableya
You will also be able to find and purchase tableya which comes in their original packaging available in 250, 500, and 1000 grams. The standard packaged Tableya will cost around P25 to P75, while those in bigger packages cost about P175 to P700.
While Dalareich’s Chocolate House is yet to be included in tours, a visit to her shop is worth the journey!
How to get here:
- By private car: From the new Bohol Panglao International Airport, follow the Daius-Panglao Road then continue on to the Butalid Causeway to Tagbilaran City. Drive towards J.S. Torralba St. then make a left at Celestino Gallares St. locate Ma. Clara St. then proceed to make a left to Graham Ave. Continue to Thomas Cloma then make a right at Bukid Drive. Once you see the Chocolate house signage, make a left. Alternatively, you can ask for the front desk at your hotel to arrange a taxi ride for you, one taxi costs around Php 400 – Php 500.
- By public transport: From your hotel in Panglao Island, you can ask for the front desk to arrange a third-party tricycle ride to Tagbilaran City. One tricycle costs about Php 200 – Php 300.
This first appeared in Philippine Primer’s Japanese magazine April 2019 issue.
Written by Feliz Grace Bueno