The Chocolate Life

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This is an invitation for people to tell what they know about the industry at the moment. What is new, what is happening in fine chocolate and where to get it. Everyone knows Haigh's makes chocolate from the bean to bar/confection but they, in my opinion, are not great. Below you will find some less well known chocolate makers and chocolatiers that I rate, and where to get fine imported chocolate too.

 

I am a hobby chocolate maker in Adelaide, South Australia and have been making chocolate from bean to bar since late 2007. I taught myself from the information on the Chocolate Alchemy forum, which came easily as I am a synthetic organic chemist. I do know there are a handful of others doing the same thing in Australia and New Zealand. 

 

So here is what I know about what is going on around the place aside from the usual like Haighs (Adelaide), Darrell Lea, Melba's (Adelaide Hills), Kennedy and Wilson (Yarra Valley), etc etc

 

Zokoko (www.zokoko.com.au) is a relatively new bean to bar manufacturer, there chocolate is excellent, probably the best produced bean to bar in Australia. Doing origins from Papua New Guinea and Bolivia.

 

Nui (www.nuicoconut.com) they do a Vanuatu Raw chocolate - bean to bar in Sydney - raw chocolate not my thing but I do get beans from them for my chocolate making.

 

Steven Ter Horst (www.steventerhorst.com.au) a chocolatier of serious talent, currently operating out of the Wayville Farmers Market (Adelaide) every Sunday. Uses Callebaut in his exquisite truffles, definitely one to watch.

 

Monsieur Truffe a chocolate shop in Collingwood, Melbourne - he is experimenting with chocolate making from bean to bar, rumour has it he is setting up to make his own chocolate but currently uses Callebaut, I think?

 

Hahndorf Hill Winery (www.hahndorfhillwinery.com.au) they are probably the most educated in fine chocolate, they run wine and chocolate tastings with Amedei, Pralus, Coppeneur etc. Good imported chocolate is hard to find in Australia and this is one place you can get it.

 

Other places to get the best imported chocolates are Chocolate World (www.chocolateworld.com.au) in Adelaide Arcade (stocking Cluizel, Askinosie and a bunch of others), David Jones food court off Rundle Mall (stocking Cluizel - but not origins, Valrhona and some others). You can also get Amedei, Valrhona and Askinosie online from various websites.

 

Hope that is helpful to people.

 

Tom

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Replies to This Discussion

I do this quite often and reply to myself but I just thought of another two.

Adi Chocolate (Fiji) www.chocolatefiji.com is run by a really nice fellow called Tomo, he harvests cacao wild and believe it or not sorts the pods into varieties then splits and ferments the different varieties separately based on their characteristics - his website is quite a good read. His operation supplies hotels around Fiji but he concented to sell me a couple of kilos to try out - very expensive - he did say though that he uses all he harvests and he must make a killing selling to the tourists. Anyway, extremely unusual bean, I bought the trinitario he does with a very light ferment. The chocolate was very thick, I suspect some quite different fat content or fat profile that leads to this, very different from any of the other origins I have tried and I have tried a lot. Anyway flavour was amazing, all honeys, nuts and malt with chocolate in there too no real fruit to speak of in the profile, a bit of astringency from the short ferment, very nice, my mum's favourite. Actually, the bean sample I got in from Samoa from Bob were very similar to this. I haven't tried the Adi chocolate as I am not rich enough to get myself to a Fijian resort.

Also another one for those interested in getting beans in is www.cacao-beans.com in Bali, they are best bought by the container load but I convinced them to send me a very expensive sample. The chocolate I made from it was very nice, no outstanding characteristics but very nice chocolate.

Oh, and don't get any cacao beans from Coffee Snobs, they know their coffee but not their cacao. That was probably a year ago but I am not going to spend that kind of money to find out if they have gotten their shit together.
Oh, and I was able to get Felchlin chocolate through Top Shelf Foods in Melbourne, I here you can get it through Sandy's Fine Foods (now Cosmo Foods) in Adelaide, I rang them the other day and they were a bunch of grumpy buggers though. The Felchlin cocoa butter I got was the cheapest I've been able to find it in Australia.
Hi Tom,

I currently work in a family business (Dullo Chocolates- www.dullo.com.au). We make our own chocolate: dark, milk, white and various praline using ivory coast ingredients.

All our chocolates are both Kosher and Halal certified.

Please do not hesitate to contact me for further information: natan@dullo.com.au.
Hi Natan,

Do you start with cocoa liquor or do you go from the bean?
We start with Liquor.
Hi Tom,

hope all is well...andreas from African Pacific...we make the Nui Raw Chocolate. Thanks for the link, we now have a lightly roasted version from Fiji Cocoa beans as well. We are awaiting our next lot of Fiji beans in November, and should have new bean from Vanuatu by the end of the month.

Thanks again...

andreas
Hi Andreas,

Good to see you on here, all is certainly well. I am about halfway through the last lot of Vanuatu I got so I will be ready for some more before Christmas so that is great.

For those of you who don't know, Vanuatu beans when roasted are a super chocolatey, earthy punch in the face - very distinctive - and have a sort of floral note that comes out after aging a bit. I love them, they really appeal to the 'Australian' taste.
thanks Tom,

sorry for the late reply..been on the road...we will have more stock form Vanuatu in the next week or so...we have been waiting for a few weeks now...can't wait...

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