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I attended the awards presentation for the Americas round of the 2013 International Chocolate Awards last night. Held at ICE in NYC, this was the first "live" awards announcement, bringing together organizers, judges, and entrants.

Some housekeeping notes about this results list and the awards:

  • Note - these are transcribed from the list prepared by the organizers and given to me last night. Any errors of omission or commission are mine. I have checked and double-checked, but there has only been one set of eyes - mine - on the list below. That's why I call the list semi-official.
  • The Americas does not include Canada. It's the US, Central and South America, and the Caribbean. Plus Japan. Until Australasia/Asia (and other countries/regions) have enough entrants to merit a separate competition, they will be included in other regions. Japan is in the Americas region because a) they wanted to be in the Americas not Europe, and b) the Americas partner for the ICA (Maricel Presilla) wanted Japan to be in the Americas.
  • In each category there can be up to one Gold award and up to five Silver awards.
  • The organizing committee, however, has the option of giving out extra Gold awards based on special criteria.
  • Gold and Silver awards do not have to be given in any category if the judging does not support their being awarded.
  • In addition to Gold and Silver awards there are also nominations. These are for entries that placed extremely closely, statistically, to Silver award winners, that the organizers wanted to send through to the World Final judging.
  • There were so many entries from the US that in addition to Americas winners the organizers decided to create a competition within the competition. Several individual entries won both an Americas award and a USA award.

With all that said, here are the results (all are US-based unless otherwise noted). 


Category: Milk Chocolate Caramels

Americas Silver: Tumbador Chocolate — Kalamansi "Pie" Caramel
Americas Silver: Chuao Chocolatier — Rosemary Salt Caramel
Americas Gold: Theo Chocolate — Honey Saffron Caramel


Category: Milk Chocolate Nut-based Pralines

Nomination: Fika Choklad — Quinoa Hazelnut


Category: Mixed Dark, Milk, White Chocolate Ganache and Truffles

Nomination: Fika Choklad — Goat Cheese Truffle
Nomination: Luxx Chocolat — Fig & Port Hat Trick
Nomination: Payard Patisserie — Salted Caramel Chocolate
USA Silver: Fruition Chocolate — Strawberry and Toasted Cashew Gianduja
USA Silver / Americas Silver: Payard Patisserie — Key Lime Chocolate
USA Silver / Americas Silver: LA Burdick — White Chocolate Mouse
Americas Silver: Arcay Chocolates (Venezuela) — Limon
Americas Silver / USA Gold: Forte Chocolates — Lemon Pepper Butter Truffle
Americas Gold: es koyama (Japan) — Laphroaig 10yr Whisky & Raspberry

Note: This is a new category this year, introduced at the request of entrants based on feedback from last year's competition. Entrants in this category might, for example, use dark chocolate for the coating and a white chocolate for the center. These are judged separately from entrants where the coating and center are the same type of chocolate. 


Category: White Chocolate Ganaches and Truffles

Americas Gold: Chocolopolis — Lemon Lavender Truffle


Category: Milk Chocolate Ganaches and Truffles

Nomination: Tumbador Chocolate — Salted Peanut Bar
Americas Silver: Theo Chocolate — Burnt Sugar Ganache
Americas Silver / USA Gold: Xocolatti — Passion Fruit Truffle
Americas Gold: es koyama — Nanko Ume Plum & Almond Praline


Category: Dark Chocolate Caramels

Nomination: Forte Chocolates — Sea Salt Caramel
Americas Silver: Theo Chocolate — Licorice Caramel
Americas Silver: Lille Belle Farms — Lavender Sea Salt Caramel
Americas Silver: Theo Chocolate — Ghost Chile Caramel
USA Gold / Americas Gold: Forte Chocolates — Rosemary Caramel


Category: Dark Chocolate Flavored Nut Pralines, Gianduja, & Enrobed Whole Nuts

Nomination: Gearharts Fine Chocolate — Pistachio Toffee


Category: Flavored Dark Chocolate Ganaches and Truffles

Nomination: Chocolate Springs — Salted Caramel Truffle
Nomination: Chocolopolis — Anise Ganache Fig
Nomination: Socola Chocolatier — Dark Chocolate Cognac Truffle
Americas Silver: Arcay Chocolates — Coco Rum
Americas Silver: LA Burdick — Fig Bonbon
Americas Silver: The Secret Chocolatier — Cardamom Chocolate Truffle
USA Gold / Americas Gold: Theo Chocolate — Mint Ganache


Category: Unflavored Dark Chocolate Ganaches and Truffles

Nomination: Chocolopolis — Colombia Truffle
Nomination: Payard Patisserie — Chocolat Chocolat


Category: Flavored White Chocolate Bars

Nomination: jcoco — jcoco Veracruz Orange Cayenne
Americas Silver: Forte Chocolates — Rosemary Sea Salt Bar
Americas Silver: es Koyama — Raspberry and Lychee


Category: Flavored Milk Chocolate Bars

USA Silver: Askinosie Chocolate — Dark Milk Chocolate+Ancho Chile & Pistachio CollaBARation™ Bar
USA Silver / Americas Silver: Hudson Chocolates — Milk Chocolate and Sichimi Togarashi Bar
USA Silver / Americas Silver: TCHO Chocolate — Mokaccino
Americas Silver: es koyama — Daitokuji–Temple Anatto
USA Silver / Americas Silver: Chuao Chocolatier — Pop Corn Pop
USA Silver / Americas Silver: jcoco — jcoco edamame sea salt bar
USA Gold / Americas Gold: Jade Chocolates — Genmai


Category: Flavored Dark Chocolate Bars

USA Silver: TCHO Chocolate — Galactic Gelato
USA Silver: Chuao Chocolatier — Spicy Maya
USA Silver: Chuao Chocolatier — Salted Chocolate Crunch
USA Gold / Americas Silver: Patric Chocolate — Mocha OMG
Americas Gold: Pacari Chocolate (Ecuador) — 60% Organic Chocolate w/ Lemongrass Infusion
Americas Gold: es koyama —Manganji–Temple Green Pepper & Almond Praline


Category: Plain & Origin White Chocolate Bars

Americas Silver: Fruition Chocolate — Toasted White Chocolate
Americas Gold: Chocolates El Rey (Venezuela) — Icoa (growing country, directly traded)


Category: Plain & Origin Milk Chocolate Bars

Americas Silver: Chocolates El Rey — Irapa
Americas Silver: TCHO Chocolate — Classic
Americas Silver: Forte Chocolates — Chocolate Love (dark milk)
Americas Gold: Chocolates El Rey — Irapa (growing country, directly traded)


Category: Plain & Origin Dark Chocolate Bars

Nomination: Amazona Chocolate (Peru) — Dark Chocolate Trinitario (origin: Peru) 73%
USA Silver: Dandelion Chocolate — Papua New Guinea 70%
USA Silver: Tejas Chocolate — Capistrano (origin: Madagascar) 70%
USA Silver: Askinosie Chocolate —  Cortés (origin: Honduras) 70%
USA Silver: Amano Chocolate Company — Chuao (origin: Venezuela) 70%
Americas Silver: Grenada Chocolate Company — Organic (origin: Grenada) 60%
USA Silver / Americas Silver: Patric Chocolate — Piura (origin: Peru) 67%
Americas Silver: Pacari Chocolate — Guayacán (origin: Ecuador) 70%
Americas Silver / USA Gold: Patric Chocolate — Madagascar 67%
Americas Silver: Pacari Chocolate — Piura Quemazon (origin: Peru) 70%
Venezuela Gold: Franceschi Chocolate — Canoabo crop 2013 (origin: Venezuela)
Ecuador Gold: Pacari Chocolate — Raw 70% (origin: Ecuador)
Americas Gold: Pacari Chocolate — Raw 70%
Americas Gold: Pacari Chocolate — Raw 70% (chocolate maker, growing country, directly sourced)


 

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Replies to This Discussion

Pretty cool. Go USA crafters. :)

Congrats to The Secret Chocolatier!

Thanks mate! We're happy to have participated and placed for our first time. :)

We haven't heard yet, do you have notes for the chocolate spreads?

I do not.

Congratulation to everyone - and to all of the ChocolateLife members who are going through to the World Finals judging in London in two weeks!

LOVE IT. LOVE IT!  Thanks for posting, it's not even on their website!

I know. Martin is on the plane flying back to London today, so I scooped it! (With his permission, of course.)

Thanks for posting the results Clay! We heard through the grapevine that we won something, but we had no idea what. Now we can go celebrate :-D  

Congrats to EVERYONE who won!!! It looks like USA made a strong showing and are sure to give an awesome variety of options for the World Finials judges… I don't envy those judges as they are sure to be splitting hairs deciding awards for quite a few of the categories. 

I am going to be a judge in the World Finals in London in about two weeks. It will be interesting because I will not have tasted anything ... in these awards. I do recognize (now) some things I tasted in the Good Food Awards judging a couple of weeks ago.

Again, congrats to all the winners and nominees - and take special note: ChocolateLife members did very well here in the Americas and in Europe.

The Official Results have been published on the ICA web site.

SUMMARY

  • Forte had 6 awards plus 1 nomination in 4 categories (truffles, caramels, and bars) for 5 entries.
  • Theo had 6 awards in 5 categories (truffles, caramels, and bars) for 5 entries.
  • Patric had 6 awards in 2 categories (both bars) for 3 entries.
  • Pacari had 6 awards in 2 categories (both bars), but 3 of them were for a single entry.
  • es koyama had 5 awards in 5 categories (2 truffles, 3 bars) for 5 entries.
  • Chuao had 5 awards in 3 categories (1 caramel, 2 bars) for 4 entries
  • TCHO had 4 awards in 3 categories (all bars) for 4 entries.

ONE ANALYSIS

If I were asked to pick an overall winner I would have to give it to es koyama: 5 awards for 5 different entries in 5 different categories. While not all are were golds (but three of the five were), it's the diversity that stands out. And not only that, with just one exception, the flavorings were non-traditional combinations to an American judging panel. Having been involved with the National/World Pastry Team Championships through 4 cycles over eight years, I can tell you that flavor has always been a challenge - technical competence never has been. So for es koyama to place so highly says a great deal about the growth in understanding of international palates.

What will be interesting to see is if a UK/EU panel will esteem the non-traditional flavors of es koyama as highly, OR will they be more conventional? Just a quick look at the European results suggests that they are quite receptive to international flavors, so it will be interesting to see how the judging goes. As I will be on the inside, judging, I hope to gain some insight that I can share on that point.

OTHER ANALYSES

There are many other ways to cut through the winners: Venezuela had a surprisingly strong presence in the awards, for example. Any thoughts on other ways to look at these?

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