Vietnamese Marou Chocolate
In an article published in the New York Times, reporter Laurence Obsborne described the world’s most exquisite chocolate bars which are made in a factory on the outskirts of Ho Chi Minh City called Marou as “The best chocolate you have never tasted” with beans that were hand-picked on a skinny strip of an island called Tan Phu Dong in the Mekong Delta, making Vietnamese chocolate unlike any other.
Marou’s chocolate has a particular complexity and variability, because unlike most chocolate makers, they can create theirs from beans they select carefully at the source. This means they have control of everything, from farm to bar. Therefore, their handmade chocolate products are more expensive than industrial ones, but the quality and flavour meet the needs of high-end markets in Vietnam and compete with international products.
Because of their culture history, I had basic knowledge of their coffee and cocoa seeds, however I was not aware of Marou chocolate. I started reading and searching for more information couple days before traveling of how pure and natural these chocolates were. Since I’m a chocolate lover and sweet tooth for pastries, I wrote down the location of Maison Marou shop and promised myself not to missed this place.
If you’re a chocolate lover or just looking for a place to relax, read while having a cup of coffee or tea at Ho Chi Minh city, this place is for you. Mind you, the chocolates are yes, quite expensive but the quality is totally worth it. Each chocolate has the percentage and it cost approximately $10.00 each, they also have cute gift boxes with a variety of chocolates, also individual mini bar chocolates and an exquisite variety of delicious pastry.
The staffs are very friendly, they introduce their chocolates, give you cocoa seed for taste as well as chocolate samples. The atmosphere is very relaxing, perfect to seat and take a nice cup of a hot creamy chocolate. The decor brings a charming environment that you’ll enjoy the shop from the moment you step in.
I’m not into Dark Chocolate too much so I selected 2 bars that weren’t too dark and one that was milk chocolate. Staff can help you choosing depending on your taste.
DONG NAI 72%
This chocolate is from the Single Origin collection, a very creamy one, the first thing I noticed was the strong aroma. The aroma of the chocolate contained earth, wood, and roast. It tasted sweet, with spice, and earth flavors. The sweetness lasted for some seconds…maybe 30 or so after the chocolate was gone. Maybe this is why is categorized as a medium length dark chocolate. Not bad at all. I’m not expert in chocolate tasting, but I do enjoy eating them. 😀
CASHEW PRALINE 65%
This one by far is my favorite, I felt in love from the first moment I tasted the sample which is from the Maison Marou collection. My parents and siblings loved it so much that we devoured the entire bar in one day. Consist of a smooth chocolate with a crunchy, almost brittle like interior, with honey, cinnamon, and dried fruits; all this with a delicious nutty center. The taste is like un-roasted cashews and toasty, while it finishes with some sweetness, and caramelized sugar at the end. Oh-My!
COCONUT MILK 55%
From the Origin Plus, I present to you, the best coconut chocolate ever. Im’ not exaggerating, the employee hand me a piece of this chocolate as I was replying “meh.. coconut?” she immediately responded -“Try it, I promise you, you’ll love it”. She was right. I usually don’t like coconut chocolates because it has more taste of coconut than the cocoa it self, the same goes with the mint flavor ones. But this one, this one is deliciously good! The coconut milk adds a richness that makes this bar a deliciously good dessert! Very creamy with a slight taste of cherry, coconut taste is not even mild, for my taste it’s just perfect.
We enjoyed a hot chocolate, 3 different desserts and I bought these 3 different (listed above) chocolates to take home. I find that these pastries are a lot more affordable than in the USA, these are made with the finest high quality cocoa from Vietnam and served well beautifully decorated without the price of a fine dinning dessert. So is the price worth it? Yes. If you prefer a cheaper chocolate, well, there’s always Hershey’s 😀 . This is something you must try if you’re visiting Vietnam.
You can also find these chocolates in some supermarkets around some countries including USA, United Kingdom, Australia, etc. Also online through Amazon.com. Keep in mind the prices are a bit more expensive, plus adding the shipping fee if it requires. Check their website to see if they sale Marou’s Chocolate near you at: Marou Chocolate.