Koko Black is quite an iconic chocolate brand here in Australia, with many stores across Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Perth and Melbourne. Recently, they have also opened up a salon in New Zealand.
I have a very distinct (and humiliating) story of Koko Black. In 2007, my best friend and I were both only 17 years old with very limited experience in the ‘dining out’ scene in Melbourne. We were shopping for our formal dresses and wanted to find a place to sit down and have a drink. As we were walking past Koko Black in Chadstone Shopping Centre, we both thought it would be a good idea to go in. We were poor students. As soon as we saw the menu, sat in the dimly lit salon, alarm bells immediately went! We were contemplating whether or not to walk away after the waiter has explained the specials to us, as well as pour us 2 cups of water. We ended up trying their afternoon tea item which included some chocolates, cakes, ice cream and ice chocolate. It was a very expensive pit stop.
Fast forward 7 years, I am now confident enough to walk away (when needed). But obviously, why would I walk away from Koko Black? I have never tried their chocolates prior to this visit, although I’ve always been a fan of their decadent iced chocolate, which I only reserve for days where I am feeling especially vulnerable. Haha. During this visit, I bought a box of 6! I was at the Collins St store at about 8.30am and there were already 3 tables of dine-in customers, ordering chocolates. Wow. There really isn’t a specific time for eating desserts.
I really loved their packaging. As someone who makes chocolates at home, I am familiar with the shelf life of certain products if I know the ingredients. This nifty sticker is really useful! Saves them from printing the use by date on every box (and have wastage), instead, they have a sticker where the sales assistant simply circles the day and month of the purchase to enable the customers to work out the use by date themselves (usually 2 weeks for Koko Black chocolates).
I am not a big fan of Chai but I was told that this was one of their best sellers, so I gave in and tried it. I am not sure if this has converted me to drinking Chai but the ganache itself was lovely and smooth, with a nice chai flavour. Also, the pink candied petal topping added some crunch to the overall texture. Not too bad.
Salted caramel is one of my favourite flavours, so there really is not surprise that I am here again, reviewing something salted caramel related. That said, this makes me half an expert! :p The caramel was nice, rich and buttery; also the salt flakes on the outside of the praline added a nicely balanced crunch. Overall, the taste was well balanced between salty and sweet. BUT!!! What I wasn’t expecting was the texture. It was chewy and I didn’t like how I unexpectedly ate a “caramel” instead of a “chocolate praline with caramel flavouring”.
This piece of praline had a nice refreshing sour flavour. The milk chocolate layer gave a nice balance against the passionfruit insert. It was sweet and sour, encased in some dark chocolate. Lovely!
The shell was nicely tempered (trust me, sometimes bonbons’ shells aren’t tempered and it doesn’t have the ‘snap’). The ganache was infused with strawberry puree and it was an acceptable piece of chocolate. I probably won’t repurchase though, given there really isn’t anything special with this.
I drink Mocha whenever I order coffee and eating this truffle was just like drinking mocha. The dark chocolate married well with the espresso flavour and it was rich and intense enough for a ‘coffee kick’.
This was hands down, my absolute favourite from my box of 6 Koko Black chocolates. The liquid salted caramel encased in the dark truffle was very delicious as it had the perfect level of saltiness and a rich buttery taste.
Can’t wait to try more of their chocolates!!