The sweet delight of chocolate is a source of great joy to many around the globe in its many, many forms but whilst most of us are happy to settle for a candy bar from the corner shop only the best will do for others and so here we decide to look at some of the places in the world where the finest cacao creations are made and sold.
With virtually every country on the planet producing their own chocolate it is well worth looking for the unique local flavors but here we take a peek at the best of the best.
1. Paul. A Young – London, England
The British have a long-standing love and tradition of chocolate but in a land where Cadbury is king who stands head and shoulders above this beloved brand? One man who has many accolades piled upon him is Paul A. Young and he is credited with launched the chocolate revolution in the country where overtly sweet treats have been traded out for more high-quality, intensely chocolatey bites.
With a few boutique chocolate shops in the capital, you should be able to find his delectable sea salt caramel pecan brownies in Camden Passage, Royal Exchange and Soho areas of the capital.
2. Que Bo! – Mexico City, Mexico
Fusing traditional Mexican flavors with the sticky sweet is something of a passion for the popular chef and TV personality José Ramón Castillo who only uses organic and locally sourced ingredients in the brightly colored truffles in his shops across the Mexican capital. Such flavors as orange, mango, chili, guava and salt are all employed to give them an extra pop.
Should these not take your fancy, the amazing dipped confit figs soaked in molasses, cinnamon, and sugar are sure to fire up anyone’s taste buds and can be enjoyed in the courtyards provided.
3. SOMA Chocolatemaker – Toronto, Canada
With pure chocolate bars made of the finest beans from around the world, and an expertise that stretches into gelato and whiskey, the tastes, sight and smells of these shops in Downtown Toronto will drive chocoholics wild. The truffles look as divine as they are to taste and the range of things to try is immense.
However, the real star of the show is the Douglas fir truffle which uses natural oils from fir trees and blends them with cocoa to create a true taste of Canada.
4. Sprüngli – Zurich, Switzerland
The high-end, Swiss chocolate shop experience is lauded the world over and this shop is no different in that case but its colors and creations are really something to behold. Opening in 1836, its reputation is built around its signature macaron, the Luxemburgerli whilst its grand cru truffles offer up a taste of decadence like no other.
With a cake shop and cafe on the second floor of the flagship store in Paradeplatz, it would be hard not to spend all day there.
5. Cicada – Sydney, Australia
A bean to bar chocolate manufacturer using raw sugar and a touch of the Madagascan bourbon vanilla bean, their bars are intense, rich and incredibly delicous and use cocoa butter to increase the smooth texture on the tongue to match the great taste, using only the best of single origin cacao beans to make sure they get a pure flavor from everything they make.
They can be found in Sydney at The Rocks Markets and Bondi farmers markets.
6. SpagNVola – Maryland, United States
Award-winning 70 percent and 80 percent pure chocolate bars that are grown on the family farm of the husband and wife owners in the Dominican Republic really represent the high level of purity that this chocolate has from the cacao pods being handpicked and roasted to their immaculate creation with olive oil truffles and caramel bonbons also being mouth watering options.
Found at their boutique at National Harbor and factory in Gaithersburg, Maryland, they offer tours of the factory to see their magic at work.
7. Roselen Chocolatier – Lima, Peru
Owned by a former graphic designer, the artistry and precision from their former profession has clearly been transferred across as the hand painted designs on the chocolates testify to their creativity. With unique jungle-style flavors such as passion fruit lemongrass or lychee with geranium petals in the chocolate, it is not just the patterns that will capture the attention.
With a tasting parlor as well the chocolates are often paired with local treats as well to give a rounded and complete experience.
8. Jouvay- Victoria, Grenada
With an 18th-century factory inside a converted rum distillery built by French monks, after drying the beans in the sunlight, the growers employ a centuries-old French tradition of “walking” the beans which is where the shells are turned over by being walked over. Working with local farmers to get the best quality beans a tasting room and a shop are on site so that you can try these specialized flavors.
Ginger and cocoa nibs are the most popular bars and it’s understandable why when you try them.
9. De Bondt – Pisa, Italy
Italy is known for its amazing quality food and chocolate is no exception to this rule but with their fruity flavors, these chocolates have a distinct flair about them such as chocolate bark covered with fresh fruits and nuts or the lemon lime 64 percent bar made from Madagascar’s finest cacao. What is most impressive is the scientific approach to chocolate.
This allows for various different percentages of chocolate in the same flavor bars meaning that each person can find their own personal preference to match their palette.
10. La Maison Du Chocolat – Paris, France
From humble beginnings as a small shop in Paris in 1977, La Maison Du Chocolat has grown into a global brand known especially for their truffles that tickle the taste buds across the globe in their many boutiques but if you head to Paris you can see the home of the brand and enjoy their iconic chocolates.
With, arguably, the best ganache around these melt in the mouth chocolates will please anybody looking for the perfect sugar rush