chocolate fondue and friends
ancient chocolate fountain legend
Woven among the threads of ancient Aztec legend lies the story of Sephra, an enchanting goddess whose beauty could only be depicted as the richness of the dark earth, combined with the luster and glow of pure gold. Her voice was softer than the finest silks and her presence carried the aroma of sweet cocoa. It was Sephra who gave the ancient Aztecs the precious gift of the cocoa tree.
The legend reveals that the spirit of Sephra nourished the cocoa trees and lived within the priceless beans they produced. The Aztec kings named the cocoa tree “Theobroma Cacao”, meaning “food of the Gods”. Cocoa beans were so valuable that they were used to pay tribute to royalty and as sacred offerings to the Gods.
Montezuma, the ruler of the wealthy Aztec Empire, was so enchanted by Sephra that he commissioned an elite force of skilled artisans and master craftsmen to construct a temple in honor of the goddess. As a special offering to Sephra, Montezuma built a magnificent fountain in the highest room of the temple and filled it with the glistening spring water, which flowed from beneath its walls. He then surrounded the fountain with a splendid array of the most perfect cocoa beans, in hopes that Sephra would continue to bless the people with the unique and valuable crop.
So pleased was Sephra with Montezuma's gift, that she came to him in a dream and told him that her spirit would always live in the fountain he had given to her. Moments later, Montezuma awoke to the sweet smell of cocoa lingering in the air. The aroma led him to the upper room of the temple where Sephra's fountain stood. To his astonishment, the fountain no longer flowed with water, but flowed with the purest, richest chocolate...this was truly a gift from the gods...
For centuries Sephra's fountain remained hidden beneath the ruins of the ancient Aztec temple waiting to be discovered. Finally it was, and with it the secret to the pure rich chocolate, that was once coveted by gods and kings.