London's Evening Standard brings us up to date on 86-year old Sir Evelyn de Rothschild and his New Jersey-born wife, 63-year old Lady Lynn Forester de Rothschild:
At 86, he’s living out his own childhood dream of owning a chocolate shop, a short taxi ride from the Chelsea home he shares with his third wife..
The Rothschild banking fortune dates from 1760s Germany; the family is remarkable for managing to maintain its wealth across multiple lines in France, Austria, Germany, Italy and Britain. Sir Evelyn is part of the London branch. He spent most of his career running N M Rothschild & Sons bank but has also found time to launch The Economist in China, set up an elephant charity with the Maharajah of Jaipur and serve as financial adviser to the Queen, who knighted him in 1989. “No one is tighter at spending than the Queen. She grew up during the War. Very disciplined.”
Sir Evelyn first entered the chocolate business in partnership with the award-winning chocolatier William Curley in 2010...d (all cocoa is sourced from Original Beans)...
He has an unnerving habit of referring to historical events — the Sugar Act of 1764, say — as if they were fresh in the mind, and he drops names of people rather than places: “You know I was responsible for the building of Milton Keynes?” But he exudes a kindly air, thanking the shop’s international staff members with gracias, grazie or merci as appropriate, interrogating everyone about their sporting favourites. His own passions are Chelsea FC and his prize colt, Crystal Ocean, the favourite in the St Leger...
As regards the American lunatic, he is dismayed by President Trump’s recent decision to overturn Barack Obama’s DACA act (the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals), which protected the children of undocumented immigrants from deportation. “I mean, come on! America was created out of immigration. It’s racist. Isn’t it? I think he’s racist. The only reason he isn’t anti-Semitic is because his son-in-law is Jewish...” If the daca repeal strikes a personal note for Sir Evelyn, it’s not only because of his wife’s close friendship with the Clintons; or because his family are so commonly cited in the anti-Semitic conspiracy theories peddled by prominent Trump supporters; or even because all three of his children live in the US (Jessica, plus music mogul Anthony and eco-adventurer David). It’s because America showed him kindness when he was a child. Sir Evelyn was one of thousands of London children evacuated to North America during the Blitz — “Bundles from Britain”, they were called. So he lived in New York from the age of eight until 11.
America was where he truly fell for chocolate. He has fond early memories of the chocolate ice cream at Gunter’s in Mayfair, curtailed by war. “There was rationing until 1955, you know. My father very kindly gave us the sweet coupons in his ration book. In those days there was no chocolate, it was just barley sugar. But of course, in America there was chocolate. My first job was behind a soda fountain in a drug store — so I could eat as much chocolate as I liked. So here I am. A chocoholic.”...
At last! Lady Rothschild enters the shop in a megawatt burst. “I’m so SORRY, I’ve had one of those AWFUL days,” she explains in a New Jersey drawl. “When I finish my chocolate I’m going to have a double vodka martini and forget this day ever happened!” She’s in great shape for the wife of a chocolatier. “Yeah, well I work out a LOT,” she drawls. “You pay your dues, so you can do what you want.”
The pair were introduced by Henry Kissinger at the Bilderberg conference in Scotland, 1998, the annual meeting of the international super-elite set up to promote transatlantic harmony after the war. Sir Evelyn says: “The only thing you could say against the place where we met is…”
“…it’s owned by Mr Trump!” Lady Lynn hoots. “I don’t think Bilderberg will ever meet there again, that’s for sure.”