Groppi was founded by the Swiss Giacomo Groppi in 1890. He had first arrived in Cairo in the 1880s and after working for a few years with another Swiss, Gianola, he bought out Gianola’s interests in its branch in Alexandria on rue de France. This was in 1890, when Groppi was 27 years old. There, he opened Maison Groppi, a pastry and dairy shop and chocolatier, then soon opened another branch on rue Cherif. It was there that Groppi introduced crème chantilly to Egypt for the first time, the technique of which he had learned when he visited the Exposition Universelle in Paris. He was also the first chocolatier in Egypt to employ female staff: but then, Alexandria was famous for its long history of “firsts” in many areas. In 1906 he sold his company to Auguste Baudrot, a Frenchman, and moved to Cairo, where Groppi acquired great fame and still exists on Adly Pasha Street. Baudrot, in its turn, rose to the highest ranks of tearooms and pastry shops in Alexandria. Whiffs of its pink china and tablecloths may survive in fragments of narratives, and in the memories of a few die-hard Alexandrians, and while Groppi in Cairo will continue to bravely serve the crème chantilly that had first appeared in Alexandria, in a few years all Baudrot’s fame will be forgotten entirely.