The History of Chocolate Cherry Cordials

Chocolate cherry cordials have a long history with the holiday season. However, their role has changed over the years as traditions have evolved and adapted to suit the times. Today, you can find chocolate cherry cordials in stores across the country. They typically appear during the winter season, especially for Christmas and Valentine’s Day. This decadent candy has been around for several hundred years, however, and its creators were not exactly professional chocolatiers. Here is a quick look at the history of chocolate cherry cordials, from their seedy origins to their classic contemporary status.

The Meaning is in the Name

According to, chocolate cherry cordials were first developed in the 1700’s under the alternative name of griottes. Griottes are from the Franche-Comte region of France. They consisted of sour griotte cherries enclosed in a chocolate casing.

In France, the idea of adding alcohol to griottes did not exist. But when griottes made their way over to the United States, Americans had the idea of soaking the cherries in alcoholic liqueurs, adding another layer of flavor — and appeal — to the candies.

The Traditional Liqueur Base

In modern days, “cordial” is a term applied to alcoholic liqueurs that come in many different flavor profiles. In the 1400’s, cordial drinks became popular in England as a form of medicine. People would use alcoholic Tonis to treat upset stomachs and digestive issues. People also used them as aphrodisiacs. The candies got their name when the practice of soaking the cherries in cordials and covering them in chocolate began. That’s how traditional French griottes became known in America as chocolate cherry cordials.

Today’s Sugar-Based Cordials: An Alcohol-free Alternative

You can still find alcoholic cherry cordials in the United States. However, the vast majority of these confections are alcohol-free. This is what allows them to be sold on grocery store shelves and passed around among family members of all ages. Instead of heating up cherries in the liqueur so that they soak up the alcohol, alcohol-free cherry cordials are cooked in sugar syrup.

There are a few national producers of these cordials, with their mass production going all the way back to 1864. Consumers can also find a number of cordial imposters, which feature sugar-heavy cherry goo in place of an actual cherry. A cordial is only a genuine cordial if there is an entire cherry at the center of the chocolate. Today, since many modern-day chocolatiers have embraced cordials as fun, inventive treats, consumers can turn to artisan chocolate shops when they want to enjoy some of the best cordials on the chocolate market.

To purchase chocolate covered cherry cordials, take advantage of online ordering opportunities through Asher’s Chocolate. We offer cherry cordials gift boxes that mix dark and milk chocolate cordials together in beautiful wrapping. Place an order today to have these delicious goodies delivered straight to your door.