A self-confessed chocoholic, Laila Al-Mukhtar’s dream to open up a small artisanal chocolaterie started long before co-owning Absolute Chocolate in Dar Al-Awadhi.
From playing pretend chef as a young child where Laila hosted her own dessert cooking show, to studying to be a chocolatier in Paris, she first considered putting her passion to use while she was still in college. After many years of home made chocolates, desserts and delectable baked goods, it was Laila’s brother-in-law, Abdulwahab, who officially instigated the start of her home-based business by bringing in orders from his friends in 2009. Too embarrassed to say no, her home business flourished, and the requests continued to pour in. Being a mother of two, while balancing a challenging work position at NBK, a brief hiatus from her chocoholic tendencies ensued, but that didn’t last very long. She bravely left her position at the bank in 2013, and shortly after that, opened Absolute Chocolate to pursue her passion full time.
Today, you’ll find Laila at the quaint chocolaterie, crafting her delicious recipes for the different, tailor made, chocolates at the boutique. She’s an expert in creating chocolates and desserts for special occasions such as weddings, receptions, and even the casual everyday gathering, with the aim to cater to the tastes of refined chocoholics like her. As a specialized chocolaterie, customers can design their own chocolates, with the option to choose from color, size and shape—they can even create their own signature chocolate flavors according to their taste palates. What is immediately noticeable at Absolute Chocolate is that the chocolates are handmade in limited quantities for freshness and quality purposes, where Laila opts to not ship in ready-made chocolates with added preservatives to create her desserts. She simply does what she loves, and won’t compromise her notion of quality for the sake of cost.
When she’s not busy at the boutique, Laila loves to read and enjoys being outdoors. Otherwise, if she’s not baking or making chocolate, she’s probably dreaming about some new flavoring for her chocolate.
How would your mother describe you in one word?
How would you describe your mother in one word?
What is your theme song?
‘We are the world’, ever since the original came out in 1984.
What word in the English or Arabic language do you wish you had invented?
Where would you like to live? What is your dream retirement location?
I love the South of France. I would live somewhere on the French Riviera.
What is the first famous quote that comes to mind?
“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.”
What do you miss about your childhood?
Being with my father.
What animal best describes the kind of partner you’d be interested in?
A wolf. It’s strong, shy, protective, loyal, fast and clever.
If you could change your name, what would you change it to?
I wouldn’t change it. I love my name.
Describe your handshake in one word?
What is the toughest part of your character?
I can be too honest sometimes.
Who is your favorite historical figure?
I really don’t have one.
What in the world do you least desire?
What do you think is lacking in the world, which if there was more of, would make the world a better place?
Why do you think most girls/guys like you?
My chocolate, haha.
Finish this sentence: “Happiness is a thing called…”
For more information,follow Absolute Chocolate on Instagram. The chocolaterie is located in Dar Al-Awadhi, Sharq. Please call 6633 6399 for orders or inquiries.