The Pattaya City Expats Club – Making Superb Chocolates and Cruising Asia

Thomas Householder describes to his PCEC audience how he came to be a self-taught “chocolatier” and open his family run business in Pattaya, Mitchells Artisan Chocolates.

The guest speakers at the Pattaya City Expats Club (PCEC) on Wednesday, December 13, were Thomas Householder who revealed the “Secrets of superb chocolate” and Club Member George Wilson with highlights of his “Cruising Asia” aboard the Norwegian Jewel.

First up was Thomas, who believes like fine wines; fine chocolates are a luxury for those true chocolate lovers. His talk included what makes one chocolate stand apart from another including the process of chocolate making from tree to delectable treat.

Thomas is a native of Akron, Ohio in the USA. In 1990, he enlisted in the armed forces and after serving his country for 27 years, he selected Thailand as his retirement retreat. He attended Stamford International University in Bangkok from 2018-2020 receiving a bachelor’s degree in International Hotel Management. Upon Graduation, he moved to East Pattaya where he resides with his wife Janphen and step-daughter View.

The chocolate making process begins on the plantation where the chocolate pods are grown. Thomas noted that most plantations are owned by indigenous families, not corporations. He then described how chocolate pods are grown on trees and then go through the fermentation and drying process before being packed and shipped to the manufacturer.

Thomas Householder describes the five primary types of chocolates including recent innovations, Caramelized White Chocolate and Ruby Chocolate.

He continued by describing how the chocolate is processed by the manufacturer including the roasting which, depending on how long, impacts on the flavor. He described other processes and how they evolve into one of three types of chocolate, White (cocoa butter, sugar, and milk powder), Milk (cocoa liquor, sugar, and milk powder), and Dark (cocoa liquor and sugar). He also mentioned that through innovative processes there is also now two more; a caramelized white chocolate and a ruby chocolate. Prior to his presentation, Thomas gave out sample of all these types to each audience member and at this point asked his audience to taste each one to get the distinction in flavors.

Thomas then got into his area of self-taught expertise, the “Chocolatier” who turns chocolate into the end product that most of us refer to as “chocolates.” The chocolatier is an artist, like a painter, with chocolates being the canvas and added ingredients are the paints. He mentioned the common filings used to make chocolates noting that the water activity in a filling is a large, but not the only factor that plays a part in determining the shelf life of the end product. He concluded by stating there is no one secret for making superb chocolates; it is more of a system of processes from tree to treat that will set apart one chocolate from another.

His business, Mitchells Artisan Chocolates enables him and his family to share their passion for making fine handcrafted chocolates. It opened last year and is located in the plaza at the Windmill Resort Hotel on Naklua Road in North Pattaya. They specialize in beautifully colored bonbons along with several other signature items, which Thomas had on display before and after his presentation. To view the video of his presentation on the PCEC’s YouTube channel, visit: To visit Mitchell’s Facebook page, visit:

MC Ren Lexander presents the PCEC’s Certificate of Appreciation to Thomas Householder for his excellent presentation about chocolate making and how it becomes a delectable treat that most enjoy in all its varieties.

Following Thomas’s presentation, Club member George Wilson shared his experience in “Cruising Asia” on the cruise liner Norwegian Jewel. He mentioned that one of his main reasons for choosing this particular ship was the cruise he took began from the Laem Chabang port, just up the road from Pattaya. George provided some statistics regarding this 2,400 passenger cruise ship and its facilities.

He then briefly shared some of his shipboard and excursion activities during the 11 day cruise that visited ports in 5 countries beginning with Vietnam, followed by Singapore, then Malaysia, Brunei and ending in the Philippines. He said he asked a lot of questions of the crew including the captain when he visited the Bridge. Looking around at all the instruments, George said he asked the captain which was the most important and the Captain replied “the coffee machine.”

Overall, he noted that cruising was not for everybody, but he thoroughly enjoyed it and would recommend it to others. To view George’s presentation on the PCEC’s YouTube channel, visit

After the presentations, MC Ren Lexander brought everyone up to date on upcoming events and called on George Wilson to conduct the Open Forum portion of the meeting where the audience can ask questions or make comments about Expat living in Thailand, especially Pattaya. To learn more about the PCEC, visit their website at https:/

Thomas Householder used this slide when he began the part of his presentation on how a Chocolatier uses chocolate to make “chocolates.”

PCEC Member George Wilson shared with his fellow members the wonders of his recent 11 day cruise around Asia on the cruise ship Norwegian Jewel.

MC Ren Lexander presents the PCEC’s Certificate of Appreciation to George Wilson for sharing his experience cruising around Asia on the Norwegian Jewel starting in Laem Chabang Thailand and ending in the Philippines.