Askinosie Chocolate likes to be first. They’re the first small-batch, 100% traceable bean-to-bar boutique chocolatier in the US to import cocoa beans from the Philippines in 25 years. They’re the first small-batch chocolate factory to press their own cocoa butter. And they’re leading the pack in sourcing their cocoa beans directly from small farmers, paying them above Fair Trade prices while sharing 10% net profits too. Indeed, this unassuming Missouri chocolatier — the genius of a former criminal defense attorney — is like the little chocolate company that could.
Delectable chocolate. Such is the Mayan and Nahuatl English translation of the word Ki-xocolatl. It’s also — not coincidentally, of course — the name of a stellar bean-to-bar Mexican-based chocolate collection. The result of years of partnership between a Belgian husband and wife chocolatier team, and Mexican cocoa producers hailing from Chiapas and Tabasco, Ki’xocolatl is a solid marriage of top notch Mexican ingredients and a dash of European techniques.
What do you get when the finest chocolate makers of Switzerland are given free rein to unleash their creativity? Le Carré des Chocolatiers, that’s what. And one bite of their tasty inventions and you’ll agree that it was a damn fine idea.
If the word ‘vegan’ makes you think of raw broccoli and bland tofu-shakes, then you might not believe your taste buds when you bite into one of Hipo Hyfryd’s luxury vegan chocolate truffles. The little Cardiff-based company with a funny name (it means ‘lovely hippo’ in Welsh) has concocted ten varietiesof luscious organic chocolate morsels — from bold salt and pepper to delicately sweet lavender — all of them 100 per cent dairy free.
What happens when you live in a world that is trending designer chocolate, DIY projects and local cuisine? German founded Chocri, an online interactive design-your-own chocolate bar operation, that’s what. To release your inner Willy Wonka, navigate to the website and begin by choosing your base, be it white, milk, dark or a sinful combination. Next, sprinkle in a handful of fruits from sour cherry to fig bits and everything in between.
Call it the tomboy truffle. Take those classic manly snacks — pretzels and beer — and wrap them up in a little ball of smooth, rich milk chocolate ganache. There you have it: the beer and pretzel truffle from Chicago’s own Truffle Truffle chocolate shop. Feeling a little more gourmet? Check out their pinot truffle — a scrumptious little ball of red-wine infused dark chocolate ganache, covered in another layer of dark chocolate.
We’ve already posted about the ambrosial and visually impressive Bean to Bar Chocolate from Williamsburg’s finest: Mast Brothers. However, it seems that we’ve overlooked one of the forefathers to this Movement – and it’s none other than the Mad-Austrian-Chocolatier himself: Josef Zotter.