The results of the first phase of the 2022 Academy of Chocolate Awards show that Asian-inspired flavours are the most popular in the bean-to-bar and tree-to-bar categories.

Founded in 2005, the Academy of Chocolate campaigns for better chocolate and promotes a greater awareness of the difference between fine chocolate and the mass-produced chocolate confectionery which most of us eat.

The Academy of Chocolate Awards in London was established with the intention of identifying, recognising and showcasing the most talented chocolate producers and finest chocolates in the world. This year, the award-giving body garnered 900 entries, of which 170 were tree-to-bar entries, with 83 awards given in this category.

Fu Wan Chocolate, based in Pingtung, Taiwan, won gold in the tree-to-bar flavoured dark category with its Red Oolong tea, 62% chocolate. Fu Wan also won bronze in the tree-to-bar plain dark category, with chocolate products fermented with beer, red wine yeast or floral yeast. Taiwan was said to be a “source of innovation” in this year’s awards, receiving numerous awards across categories.

A greater proportion of entries and awards came from Asia and America this year, with Japanese flavours such as miso, sake, yuzu, shoyu, and hojicha and matcha teas well represented among the winners.

The bean-to-bar flavoured milk chocolate category gave gold to Sweets Escalier’s Ecuador Pajarito Milk 72% with Shio Koji. Meanwhile, in the bean-to-bar flavoured dark chocolate category, Takahashi Trading’s Nicof + Sake Powder and Sacha + Matcha Okumidori bars took silver. Satoyama Craft Chocolate (Salt) by Fujino Ryohinten was awarded silver in the bean-to-bar seasoned dark category.

Bars with a higher Cocoa content (90%-100%) also fared well in the awards. Chocopunto by Mabel 95% Dark Chocolate – Oko Caribe, Fjåk Chocolate 100% Dark Uganda, and Goodnow Farms Chocolate Special Reserve 100% Cacao all won gold in the bean-to-bar plain category.

The competition’s judges include leading chocolatiers, producers, journalists, bloggers, food writers and other chocolate experts from across the industry. Products are marked on appearance, depth of aroma and flavour, length and complexity.

Huge congratulations to all our winners. The awards continue to go from strength to strength and judges were so impressed with the calibre of entrants and the determination, particularly of tree-to-bar producers, who against all odds have produced numerous excellent examples of chocolate of the highest quality. There is so much greater awareness in recent years that, however carefully crafted and evocative of origin, chocolate also serves as an indulgence, a source of sensory delight and comfort in difficult times, hence the continued popularity and excellence of flavoured craft bars.

Chantal Coady, Chair, Academy of Chocolate

View the results of the 2022 Academy of Chocolate Awards here:

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