Amano Madagascar & Ocumare

Posted by in Chocolate Reviews on January 23 2008 | Leave A Comment
Amano Madagascar & Ocumare

These chocolates were sent to us by Art Pollard of Amano Chocolate.

I was going to review them separately, but they’re so similar I thought I’d review them together. They’re both 56g bars of solid, 70% dark chocolate. The only difference is the origin of the cacao beans used.

But make no mistake, this is proper chocolate. From Utah, no less.

At first glance, both bars look exactly the same, with the only difference being the illustration on the front of the box. Indeed, if you stuff a chunk into your mouth and chew it like a chunk of Dairy Milk (or heaven forbid… Hershey’s)… they taste pretty much the same too.

You can tell you’re dealing with a quality product from the start. Each bar is packaged in a matt grey box with shiny gold highlights and carefully wrapped in gold foil. Opening the foil and you’re greeted with a beautiful, glossy bar of dark chocolate, which each square marked with the Amano logo.

Amano Madagascar & Ocumare

In order to fully appreciate these chocolates, you have to eat them properly. That may seem a strange thing to do, but it’s not that difficult. Just place a chunk on your tongue and let it melt slowly. As it melts, it releases a whole host of interesting flavours, and you’ll begin to see just how different two identical bars made from different beans can be.

If you really want to explore all the flavours, Amano has an in-depth guide to tasting chocolate on their web site. It’s probably overkill for most people, but it does make interesting reading.

After extensive testing, I found the Madagascar bar to be my favourite. It’s slightly sweeter and fruitier than the Ocumare bar and really quite pleasant. If you only buy one bar, I’d recommend the Madagascar, but if you really want to learn about chocolate, get both and follow the Amano tasting guide and you’ll discover just how different two bars that superficially look the same can be.

For dark chocolate lovers, I can’t recommend these highly enough. If you’ve never had dark chocolate or simply don’t like it, you may not going to appreciate the work that’s gone into creating them.

It’s certainly not a chocolate you should stuff your face with or try to satisfy a sugar craving with, but a few chunks eaten slowly and savoured will definitely lift your day.

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Comments On This Post

  1. Looks wonderful. “I wonder if they ship abroad,” I thought. Sure enough, they have a selection of 152 different countries on their order form.

    So I complete the form and put in Spain and my postcode. “Sorry, it was not possible to calculate shipping for this order. No shipping options in the UPS quotes set”

    And there I am dumped. On a page that asks again for my country and postcode. No way forward, no way back. No way to mail and say “Do you actually know where abroad is?”

    Typical American supplier, I’m afraid, even if it isn’t typical American chocolate.

  2. Thank you for another fantastic review and seducing me to pursue this heavenly sounding bar of dark delight.

    However after adding a bar to my online shopping basket I have to ask is the delight worth $83.28… Help keep me away from the submit button!

    All prices are in US Dollars:
    Single 2oz Cuyagua Bar: 6.95 – 6.95
    Shipping to UK: – 76.33
    TOTAL: – 83.28 !!!!

  3. Dom – it’s funny, I’ve had three of these bars now and much prefer the Ocumare, but I think I simply prefer Ocumare in just about anyone’s bar. (Chocovic’s is pretty good and about 1/3 the price here in the States.)

    Cliff – “Typical American supplier” … wow, pretty harsh. (North Americans feel pretty much the same way about ordering anything from Europe.) Did you try emailing them?

    http://amanochocolate.com/about/contactus.html

  4. Hi. This is Art. I’m the head chocolate maker at Amano.

    We try to work with people from other countries that want to order our chocolate. Unfortunately, the shopping cart system we use does not work well for calculating overseas orders shipping. So, if people send us an e-mail, we will calculate the shipping and get back with them to work it all out. This takes a lot of time on our end (since it all has to be handled manually) but, we do the best that we can to make everyone happy. (After all, isn’t that what chocolate is all about?)

    In addition, we are working with a European supplier to bring our chocolate to Europe on a regular basis so even if the shipping does not work out, you’ll be seeing at least some of our chocolate hitting Europe in the not too distant future.

    -Art

  5. Loved every bit of your blog post.Really looking forward to read more. Fantastic.