One look at the chocolates inside should give you an idea of what attracted me to them.
The simple blocks of bright colour neatly lined up in the box remind me of crayons, which immediately appealed to the child in me. This is a six piece gift box, but they come in sizes up to 36 pieces with 18 different flavours to choose from. In my little box, I have Raspberry, Valencia Orange, Yuzu, Wasabi, Green Tea and Blueberry.
All but the green tea feature simple, dark chocolate ganaches in a dark chocolate shell, and the green tea just uses a white chocolate ganache, so as not to completely overwhelm the subtle flavour. It really does work, and it’s one of the few tea chocolates I’ve had where the flavour really shines through.
The raspberry, orange and yuzu had the sharp tang of real fruit oil, but it’s done such a way that it doesn’t overwhelm the chocolate and you still get a whole range of flavour. The other fruit, the blueberry, is more subtle, but equally well rounded. The wasabi is peppery and warm, but all the chocolate flavours still come through.
These are the perfect illustration of Japanese and French attention to detail when it comes to chocolate making and patisserie. The flavours themselves are interesting, but they don’t push any boundaries. Instead, the focus is on getting the flavour balance and presentation absolutely perfect.
As far as I can make out, these chocolates aren’t available to buy online, but if you’re in Paris, Tokyo or Taipei, then I highly recommend seeking out one of Sadaharu Aoki’s boutiques and trying them for yourself.