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The Charles VII confectionery wants to leave Bourges with its lollipops

Le Berry Republicain, 14.11.2017

© Stéphanie Para

When you taste a lollipop at a fairground or in an amusement park, it’s a little bit of Bourges that flows down your throat. Not for long. The Charles VII confectionery wants to leave Cher to create a confectionery conservatory in Indre-et-Loire.

In the Chemin Légnier workshop, it smells of candied orange, dark chocolate and the end of a long story. A little-known part of Berruyer’s gastronomic heritage is about to build its future outside of Berry.

Born in the heart of Bourges, Cour de la Cocarde, with a settled fairground confectioner, before moving to Rue des Ruchers, the Charles VII confectionery, located on Chemin Légnier since the 1960s, wants to move to Amboise.

In Indre-et-Loire, homeland of the owner, Nicolas Viollet, 31  old, third generation of confectioner, even crazier about chocolate – and all sweets – than Salvador Dali, wishes to set up a conservatory confectionery.

An  ambitious ” project that costs a lot

“This is an investment close to two million euros designed to safeguard this tangible and intangible heritage, with the idea of ​​showing visitors how sugared almonds, calissons, nougats, caramels, etc. are made. .. advances, under his impeccable bacchantes, the man who has managed the Charles VII confectionery since 2006, to which he has joined the Dame Agnès chocolate factory. I am also thinking about setting up real training dedicated to this profession. The project is currently being finalized, which is why we are staying in Bourges until at least the end of 2017.”

If the production of chocolates – “which only represented 5 to 10% of our turnover” – has been stopped and their traditional end-of-year sales to individuals cancelled, the lollipops still come out of the Berruyers workshops waiting to slide towards Touraine.

At the peak of activity, 40 tonnes of candy twisted around sticks were made each year on Chemin Légnier. Artisanal sweets that consumers find at fairgrounds – “there are only six of us in France who supply them” – and in amusement parks. At Parc Astérix. At Futuroscope.


Amboise rather than Bourges : the choice quickly became obvious to Nicolas Viollet who this year employed two employees. “  imagined a collaboration with the Forestines (inventor in 1878 of the filled candy, Editor’s note), but I didn’t feel much enthusiasm on their side,” he explains. Bourges has assets. The cathedral, the Jacques-Coeur palace. But Touraine is, in my eyes, more dynamic, more focused on tourism. »

The “ ideal ” place to exhibit part of the impressive collection of objects, from the old chocolate mold to the sugar-coating turbine, that Nicolas Viollet has been building since he was 14 years old. “ A dream will come true.” 

Benjamin Gardel