The Best Dark Chocolate Bar Brands We Eat

Dark chocolate chocoholics are a special community. Chocoholics who love to eat dark chocolate might do so for its health claims, as there are some pretty valuable ones: lowers blood pressure, reduces stress, improves your cognitive ability etc. Others eat it for the taste, purity & sustainability. 

At Kekao, we work with craft chocolate makers. A craft chocolate maker's heart and soul are their dark bars. It allows the maker to show off their skill by bringing out the true flavours of the fine cacao beans being used. It also encourages farmers to continue growing fine cacao preserving ancient year old trees. 

Here are the best dark chocolate brands we eat and suggest.

The Best  Dark Chocolate Brands We Eat

Manoa Chocolate Hawaii

Manoa is a Hawaiin based chocolate maker. Hawaii is the only state in the USA to grow cacao. The story of this maker began in the labs at the University of Hawaii in 2010 studying cacao as a crop for the state. Manoa started as college students with no money and bootstrapped their business with ingenuity and determination.

Explore their entire chocolate collection here.

Recommended bar:

Manoa World Blend 100% (Limited Edition)

If you love 100% dark chocolate bars, you will love this limited edition 100% by Manoa. It is a blend of three different parts of the world. Manoa used 1/3 of the beans from Hilo, Hawaii, Zorzal Cacao, Dominican Republic, and Costa Esmeraldas, Ecuador.

Tasting notes: Floral, Tropical Fruit & Spices

Weight: 60g

You can purchase this bar on our online store.

Marou, Faiseurs de Chocolat

Marou was one of the first bean to bar makers in Asia. When Vincent Mourou left his advertising career in San Francisco, he moved to Vietnam to find himself. This is when Vincent met Samuel Maruta, a banker from France living in Saigon with his wife and two kids. The two had nothing but a blender, an oven, cake tins, and Sam's kitchen. Samuel and Vincent continue to work with a tight network of small farmers who they buy the best quality beans from.

Explore their entire chocolate collection here.

Recommended bar:

 

Marou Wallpaper Tien Giang 80%

This chocolate bar is high in spice, tobacco, and nutty flavours that showcases Marou’s dedication to exceptional design as recognized by London’s Wallpaper* magazine.

Tasting notes: Spice, Tobacco & Nutty

Weight: 80g

You can purchase this bar on our online store.

OmNom Chocolate Reykjavík 

OmNom is a small-batch, craft chocolate maker based in Reykjavík, Iceland. The company started as an experiment to see if the two friends could master how to make chocolate. From the start, they received positive tasting feedback. After receiving positive feedback, they set up a small chocolate-making lab inside a converted gas station and launched. OmNom's mission is to make the best chocolate possible using the highest quality of ingredients.

Explore their entire chocolate collection here.

Recommended bar:

OmNom Tanzania 70%

A pure dark single-origin bar from Tanzania cocoa. It features a dominance of stone fruits and roasted hazelnuts with hints of raisins and ripe apricots.

Tasting notes: Fruity & Nutty

Weight: 60g

You can purchase this bar on our online store.

Raaka

Raaka is devoted to making uncommonly delicious chocolate that captures the brighter, bolder, and fruitier side of cacao. They make every bar from scratch with unroasted cacao beans, sourced from growers they trust and admire. The unique flavour of their unroasted chocolate is part place, part process. They craft their bars in celebration of each cacao origin's unique character. Their chocolate making process values the community of growers, producers, and makers whose livelihoods depend on cacao and chocolate. All of their chocolate is made from scratch, bean-to-bar, in Red Hook, Brooklyn.

Explore their entire chocolate collection here.

Recommended bar:

Raaka Bourbon Cask Aged 82%

They age single origin Tanzanian cacao in bourbon casks for two months, creating a deeply nuanced bar with a cocktail-like vibe: oaky and smooth, with a hint of cherry cordial on the finish. It is their best selling bar and a 2013 Good Food Award Winner.

Award: 2013 Good Food Award

Tasting notes: Oaky & Cherry

Weight: 50g

You can purchase this bar on our online store.

Dick Taylor Craft Chocolate

Adam Dick and Dustin Taylor have always loved crafting. With a background in woodworking and boat building, they have always worked with their hands. Craft is a guiding principle in their lives. After hearing about the craft chocolate movement in the late '00s, they saw similarities in woodworking and craft chocolate making. They became fascinated with the idea of the chocolate experience and in 2010 bought their first chocolate-making equipment. Their chocolate captures and highlights the subtle flavour nuances in the cacao they source from around the world, with the goal to make an enjoyable chocolate experience for us.

Explore their entire chocolate collection here.

Recommended bar:

Dick Taylor Jamaica, Bachelor's Hall 75% Limited Edition

Limited Release Single Origin from Bachelor's Hall Estate in South-Eastern Jamaica. With rich notes of apricot, graham cracker, and dates, this bar is unique and delicious! The perfect, unique gift for the chocolate connoisseur or dark chocolate lover.

Tasting notes: Apricot, Graham Cracker & Dates

Weight: 57g

You can purchase this bar on our online store.

Blanxart

It was in April of 1954 when the master chocolatier Francesc Agrás embarked on a long journey through the best patisseries and confectioneries in Europe. His passion for excellence in artisan confectionery was the seed that led to the founding of one of the most renowned Catalan chocolate factories: Bombons Blanxart. It all started in a modest workshop in the neighborhood of Les Corts (Barcelona) and feeding a dream: bringing the best cocoa beans from Ghana, Congo, and Guayaquil to chocolate.

Explore their entire chocolate collection here.

Recommended bar:

Blanxart Congo Eco-Organic 82%

There has got to be a law against chocolate this good. Intense smoke and coffee flavor permeates the palate leaving its delectable mark on the unwary taste-traveler.

Tasting notes: Smokey & Coffee

Weight: 125g

You can purchase this bar on our online store.

Amano Artisan Chocolate

Amano Artisan Chocolate is a small-batch craft chocolate maker based in Orem, Utah. Amano is an award-winning maker, they make all their chocolate on vintage equipment. Their small batch process allows Amano to control and observe flavor development, making each batch of chocolate not only delicious but unique.

Explore their entire chocolate collection here.

Recommended bar:

Amano Macoris 70%

This is one of their newest single-origin bars. Made with beans from the Dominican Republic this bar has hints of apricot, caramel, brown sugar, and cream all held together with a rich earthy chocolate base.

Tasting notes: Apricot, Caramel, Brown Sugar & Cream

Weight: 85g

You can purchase this bar on our online store.

Akesson's Chocolate

Akesson's Organic Chocolate is the first "Tree to Bar" chocolate maker. The Akesson family started with a single plantation in Madagascar. Today, Bertil Akesson has expanded the company's cacao network with plantations in Madagascar, Brazil, and Indonesia. If you tried craft chocolate or world-famous chocolatier chocolate, it is likely that it came from one of Akesson's cacao plantations. Akesson's Organic Chocolate bars have won a multitude of awards and is regarded as one of the best craft chocolate bars on the market. 

Explore their entire chocolate collection here.

Recommended bar:

Akesson's Madagascar Trinitario & Wild Voatsiperifery Pepper 75%

Chocolate infused with rare wild Madagascan Voatsiperifery pepper. The pepper's intense floral aroma lends a fresh taste and gentle spicy heat to this chocolate. Voatsiperifery pepper from Madagascar is the rarest and finest pepper native to Madagascar, where these Trinitario beans are also grown.

Award: 2016 Academy of Chocolate Gold Winner & 2016 International Chocolate Academy Gold Winner

Tasting notes: Peppery, Earthy, Intense Floral Aroma

Weight: 60g

You can purchase this bar on our online store.

To get started with craft chocolate, start with our Kekao Box. We search the world for the finest chocolate bars and bring them right to your doorstep monthly.

From rich dark Peruvian chocolate bars to new start-up chocolate bars on the come up, you never know what you get inside the box!

Each month we will curate 4 to 5 premium specialty crafted chocolate bars. 

Have someone who you appreciate? It also makes as a great gift

If you want to just try a couple of bars, check out our online chocolate shop, it's a selection of what we have curated in our past boxes. 

If you have any questions regarding this blog, our Kekao Box, or premium specialty crafted chocolate bars, feel free to contact us! Keep up with us by subscribing to our newsletter or following us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.