As I mentioned last week, there’s nothing I like better than discovering new bean-to-bar chocolate makers. From a few very large companies and just a handful of dedicated chocolate makers back in 2000, the chocolate market has developed to a point where handmade bean-to-bar chocolate is on the verge of becoming the norm, rather than the exception.
The United States dominates the list of quality chocolate makers, but slowly the rest of the world is waking up to it and wanting to get in on the game. And that brings us nicely to OmNom Chocolate. Iceland’s first – and so far only – bean to bar chocolate maker.
I first heard of OmNom via my friend Judith, who visited the small factory on a recent trip to Reykjavik. I was lucky enough to be given this bar by another friend, and first impressions are very good.
I love the name and branding, but I particularly like the box. The thin card wrapper with has a simple paper sleeve to keep it closed, and it feels like a quality product. Most importantly of all, the design means I can re-seal the pack after taking a chunk or two. With a quality chocolate bar, it’s really important to be able to wrap the bar up again, because it’s not something you tend to eat in one go. OmNom’s packaging means I can keep the bar with me and not have to worry about stray chunks and crumbs at the bottom of my bag. It’s the little things that make for a great chocolate experience.
On opening the foil inner wrapper, you’re immediately greeted by the unmistakeable aroma of Madagascan cacao. There’s a wonderfully vibrant, fruity aroma to it.
There’s a slightly soft texture to the chocolate, although I’m sure that’s in no small part down to the current hot weather in London at the time of writing. Consequently, the chocolate has a quick melt and releases it’s flavour rapidly.
The fruity, citrus notes are there in the flavour, but they’re much more subtle than I was expecting from the aroma. Instead, there’s a prominent liquorice flavour note and some rather interesting floral flavours. It doesn’t kick you in the face like some Madagascan chocolates, but instead takes you on a more gentle and interesting ride.
The friend who gave me this bar told me it was great, but perhaps not as refined as it could be. Personally though, I love it. I love that it’s not the same as every other Madagascan origin chocolate bar. I love the flavour and I love the way it’s presented.
You can buy OmNom Chocolate online and it’s also available in a few retail outlets in the US, Denmark and France. Hopefully we’ll be able to get it easily in the UK soon too, as it really is rather good.