The Best Chocolate in The World 2023

The Best Chocolate in the World 2023
Dmytro Minkov

In the enchanting Tuscan countryside, the stage was set for the 2023 International Chocolate Awards World Final, a celebration of the finest chocolates worldwide. Hosted at the opulent Villa Castelletti near Florence, Italy, this event drew artisans and connoisseurs from across the globe, transcending borders to honor the zenith of chocolate craftsmanship.

Participants, both physically present and online, hailed from diverse corners of the world, including Taiwan, Japan, the USA, Denmark, Czech Republic, Hungary, Germany, and Italy. Noteworthy attendees, like co-founder Maricel Presilla from New Jersey, joined passionate entrants who embodied the pinnacle of the global craft chocolate industry.

Despite minor technical hiccups, the ceremony unfolded seamlessly, evoking an atmosphere teeming with excitement and heartfelt emotions. Tears of elation streamed down the faces of winners as they were bestowed the prestigious World Final Gold prize, a true testament to their exceptional contributions to the craft chocolate realm.

Within Villa Castelletti's ceremony room, vibrant backdrops adorned with national and regional representations served as picturesque settings. Attendees joyously immortalized the moment, capturing selfies with their well-deserved certificates.

The announcement of winners was graced by co-founders Monica Meschini and Maricel Presilla, alongside esteemed Grand Jury members Michaela Schupp and George Gensler.

Broadcasted live on their Facebook page, the event was accessible for all to witness. The judging panel, comprising experts from various corners of the world and international Grand Jury members, evaluated entries in a hybrid format—part in-person in Florence and part remotely in October 2023.

Anonymity characterized the judging process, culminating in the Grand Jury's private voting session to award Golds, Silvers, and Bronzes as per their rules. The ceremony celebrated winners walking away with a remarkable array of accolades, with some individuals and brands claiming 10-15 awards, a testament to their unwavering dedication to quality craftsmanship.

Noteworthy achievers of the evening included Fu Wan from Taiwan with 18 prizes, Mikkel Friis-Holm from Denmark with 14 prizes plus 9 specials, and Goodnow Farms from the USA with 12 prizes. Italy's dominance in nut-based categories was evident through makers like Guido Castagna, Depetris Riccardo, and the Gardini brothers. Women chocolatiers also shone brightly, with Monia Achille, Francesca Caon, and Stefania Massera securing numerous accolades for their innovative creations.

Queenie from Q Sweet (Taiwan) expressed heartfelt gratitude, emphasizing her commitment to championing women in the chocolate industry and inspiring more female involvement in chocolate-making.

The competition witnessed an unprecedented level of excellence, with all overall winners scoring above 90 points. The highest accolade, a score of 94.4, was awarded to Guido Castagna (Italy) for his legendary 'Giuinott,' a traditional Italian gianduiotto crafted meticulously with the finest hazelnuts from Piedmont and dark chocolate.


World's Best Chocolate 2023

World's Best Chocolate 2023

The List Of World Final Winners 2023


"Best in Competition" Overall Winners

The Best Dark Chocolate in the World 2023

Vigdis Rosenkilde - Kiteni 70% (SCORE 91.6 OF 100) - Norway

Vigdis' 70% Dark chocolate ‘Kiteni’ became ‘Best in competition’ overall winner among dark chocolates at our 2023 World Final Competition. Crafted from the rare Chuncho cocoa, renowned for its floral and fruity essence, this chocolate encapsulates a truly unique taste. Among cocoa varieties, Chuncho stands out as a remarkably aromatic gem—some even consider it the pinnacle of cocoa fragrance. Within the Kiteni district, a particular strain of Chuncho boasts a distinct rose-like flavor. This discovery inspired Rosenkilde to create a chocolate that celebrates this exceptional cocoa variant.

The Best Dark Chocolate in the World 2023 | Vigdis Rosenkilde - Kiteni 70%
The Best Milk Chocolate in the World 2023

Chaleur B Chocolat - Milk 51% (90.6 of 100) - Canada

In 2023 the 51% milk chocolate bar by the Canadian Chaleur B Chocolat was named the world's best milk chocolate. This milk chocolate is crafted from 51% cocoa beans, blended with skimmed milk, sugar, and vanilla pods to create a classic treat that delights chocolate enthusiasts. It symbolizes a nostalgic journey back to our roots—a homage to childhood through these timeless skimmed milk-infused chocolates.

The Best Milk Chocolate in the World 2023 | Chaleur B Chocolat - Milk, 51%

Plain/Origin Chocolate Bars

Plain/origin dark chocolate bar

Vigdis Rosenkilde (Norway) - Kiteni 70% - GOLD (SCORE 91.6)

Vigdis Rosenkilde's 'Kiteni' 70% Dark Chocolate clinched the prestigious 'Best in competition' title at our 2023 World Final Competition, triumphing among an array of dark chocolates. Handcrafted from the esteemed Chuncho cocoa, renowned for its floral and fruity essence, this chocolate promises an unparalleled taste experience. The Chuncho cocoa is revered for its extraordinary aroma, often hailed as the epitome of cocoa fragrance within the realm of cocoa varieties. In the Kiteni district, a specific strain of Chuncho unveils a unique rose-like flavor, sparking Rosenkilde's inspiration to fashion a chocolate that pays homage to this exceptional cocoa variation.

World's Best Dark Chocolate 2023 | Vigdis Rosenkilde - Kiteni, 70%
Plain/origin milk chocolate bars

Chaleur B Chocolat (Canada) - Milk 51% - Gold (Score 90.6)

Chaleur B Chocolat's Vanilla organic white chocolate offers a lusciously creamy experience. Its richness, coupled with a subtle hint of vanilla extract, makes it an exceptional and dependable ingredient, perfect for baking endeavors.

The Best Milk Chocolate in the World 2023 | Chaleur B Chocolat - Milk 51%
Micro-batch – Plain/origin dark chocolate bar

MEYBOL CACAO (Germany) - VRAEM 68% - Silver (SCORE 90.1)

Artisanally crafted chocolate, meticulously produced from 68% fine flavor cocoa sourced from naturally cultivated cacao in Peru's VRAEM region. Every step, from bean to bar, is lovingly curated to showcase the exquisite flavors derived from this pristine cocoa, cultivated amidst the lush landscapes of the VRAEM region in Peru.

Best Dark Chocolate 2023 | Maybol Cacao - Vraem 68%
Micro-batch – Plain/origin dark chocolate bar

McGuire Chocolate (Canada) - Santa Maria 70% - SILVER (SCORE 89.7)

McGuire Chocolate's Santa Maria 70% is a paradise for chocolate enthusiasts. Meticulously composed using premium ingredients, this exceptional dark chocolate stands among the finest globally, presenting a harmonious blend of sweet dried fruit and delicate nutty undertones. Treat your palate to the indulgence of this exquisite 70% cocoa delight.

McGuire Chocolate - Santa Maria 70% | Best Dark Chocolate 2023
Plain/origin dark chocolate bar

Vigdis Rosenkilde (Norway) - Santa Ana 70% - SILVER (SCORE 89.3)

Located on the banks of the Urubamba River within Peru's Cusco region, Santa Ana is home to the Cooperativa Alto Urubamba. This cooperative works hand in hand with more than 100 farmers, passionately committed to elevating cocoa cultivation through comprehensive training in plantation preparation. The outcome? Outstanding ingredients and an abundance of premium cocoa batches available for selection. Vigdis couldn't help but overflow with excitement upon discovering the cocoa utilized in this chocolate, expressing her joy with an exuberant squeal.

Vigdis Rosenkilde - Santa Aana 70% | Best Dark Chocolate 2023
Micro-batch – Plain/origin dark chocolate bar

Meybol Cacao (Germany) - Collection N5 - SILVER (Score 88.3)

Impeccably handcrafted chocolate from tree to bar, created using 70% ultra-premium fine-flavor Chuncho cocoa sourced from the Cusco/Quillabamba region in Peru. Embark on a journey through the diverse world of Chuncho cocoa with Meybol's exclusive Genotype Collections. Each of these curated sets showcases unique Chuncho cocoa genotypes, comprising around 50 meticulously chosen trees. These invaluable collections face the threat of disappearing, emphasizing the crucial need to protect their unparalleled traits. Meybol Cacao takes great care in handpicking selections from these trees, preserving and honoring their exceptional characteristics through meticulous curation.

Meybol Cacao - Collection 5 | Best Dark Chocolate 2023
Micro-batch – Plain/origin dark chocolate bar

Feliu Chocolate (Mexico) - Soconusco 71% - Silver (Score 88.0)

Crafted from a blend of hybrid and Criollo cocoa varieties hailing from the Soconusco region in southern Chiapas, this exquisite plain vegan dark chocolate defines gourmet indulgence.

Feliu Chocolate - Socolusco 71% | Best Dark Chocolate 2023
Plain/origin chocolate bars with alternative ingredients

Chaleur B Chocolate (Canada) - Vegan White Chocolate - Bronze (Score 87.3)

Chaleur's dairy-free white chocolate, meticulously crafted from natural, non-deodorized cocoa butter, tiger nuts, cane sugar, and vanilla. Embracing the nourishing qualities of tiger nuts, this exquisite creation stands as a perfect substitute for cow's milk, addressing lactose intolerance and meeting the needs of vegan diets. Beyond its adaptability, it introduces a unique and exotic flavor profile, adding a delightful twist to your chocolate experience.

Chaleur B Chocolat - The Best Vegan White Chocolate 2023
High % plain/origin dark chocolate bars (85% and over)

Feliu Chocolate (Mexico) - Soconusco 100% - Bronze (Score 86.5)

Sourced solely from Soconusco, Chiapas, this sugar-free dark chocolate bar undergoes an intricate journey. The cocoa undergoes fermentation, roasting, refining, and a deliberate aging process of at least two months. This meticulous method results in a delicate profile, featuring fruity notes, nutty undertones, and a hint of subtle acidity.

Feliu Chocolate Soconusco 100% | Best Sugar-free Chocolate 2023
Plain/origin chocolate bars with alternative ingredients

SLOK Chocolate (Hong Kong) - Cupuassu Dark Milk 60% - Bronze (Score 86.0)

Cupuaçu (capassu), also known as Theobroma grandiflorum, shares a close relationship with cacao, boasting a nutritional profile similar to its chocolate-producing cousin. In recent times, Cupuaçu has garnered attention as a superfood and a viable chocolate alternative. Working with Cupuaçu poses challenges. Its resilient shell necessitates manual peeling, and its bold bittersweetness requires careful management during bar production. Nonetheless, what truly captivates about Cupuaçu is its distinctive flavor profile and creamy texture. To leverage these qualities, SLOK has crafted a 60% dark milk bar, preserving Cupuaçu's unique taste while balancing its bitterness.

Flavored Chocolate Bars

Dark chocolate bars with inclusions or pieces

Vigdis Rosenkilde (Norway) - Piura 70% with Nibs - Silver (Score 90.2)

The complexity of flavors in this chocolate isn't a result of artificial additives; instead, they naturally unfold from the cocoa, meticulously handled at every step of the process. The Piura Criollo cocoa takes center stage, boasting a high concentration of white cocoa beans, which yields one of the most refined cocoa profiles globally. This exceptional cocoa variety brings forth delightful notes of citrus, dried fruits, caramel, and nuts, orchestrating a harmonious blend of flavors. Renowned for its subtle character, Piura Criollo lends itself exceptionally well to cocoa nibs, imparting a delightful crunch to this chocolate bar. Vigdis personally sources this cocoa from farmer Elias Cruz in Piura, located in northern Peru, ensuring the highest quality and adhering to ethical standards. Her packaging reflects thoughtful craftsmanship, utilizing textured recycled paper, inviting you to embark on the journey from cocoa fruit to the creation of this exceptional chocolate bar.

Vigdis Rosenkilde - Piura 70% with Nibs | World's Best Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate bars with inclusions or pieces

Pacari Chocolate (Ecuador) - Raw 101% (Score 89.7)

Pacari Raw 101%, an exceptionally distinctive sugar-free chocolate encounter. Formulated exclusively with the finest Ecuadorian beans celebrated for their outstanding flavor, this masterpiece earns an additional 1% distinction through the inclusion of skillfully scattered unroasted Ecuadorian cocoa nibs gracing its surface.

Pacari Chocolate 101% | Hello Chocolate Shop
Dark chocolate bars with an infusion or flavouring

Pacari Chocolate (Ecuador) - Lemon Verbena - Silver (Score 89.0)

Indulge in the enchanting blend of bold vegan dark chocolate interlaced with the subtle notes of zesty lemon in PACARI Organic Chocolate Andean Lemon Verbena. This seamless union is expertly crafted, yielding an irresistible medley of flavors that captivate the senses in a harmonious symphony.

Pacari Chocolate - Lemon Verbena | Best Chocolate 2023
Milk chocolate bars with an infusion or flavouring

McGuire Chocolate (Canada) - Pumpkin Spice 46% (Score 87.8)

Immerse yourself in the finest chocolate, meticulously created to indulge both your pumpkin and chocolate desires simultaneously. Encounter the luscious and velvety opulence of milk chocolate, expertly fashioned with authentic pumpkin and a delightful fusion of spices. Packaged for convenient on-the-go enjoyment, it stands as your ideal companion for those moments when you crave it most.

Mcguire Chocolate Pumpkin | World's Best Milk Chocolate
Dark chocolate bar with an infusion or flavouring

Pacari Chocolate (Ecuador) - Rica Rica - Silver (Score 87.1)

Pacari enhances its classic dark chocolate by infusing it with Rica Rica, an aromatic herb that lives up to its name. The result is an indulgent experience, elevating this chocolate to be among the finest in the world.

Pacari Chocolate - Rica Rica | Best Chocolate 2023
Dark chocolate bars with an infusion or flavouring

SLOK Chocolate (Hong Kong) - Aged With Hops 72% - Bronze (Score 86.7)

This chocolate bar is a result of SLOK's collaboration with Mak's Beer, a local brewery in Hong Kong. SLOK incorporated Mak's Beer hops into the recipe, crafting a delightful aged bar. By blending the floral notes and bitterness of the hops with the inherent longan flavor of beans from the Philippines, they created a harmonious balance with a subtle beer-like bitterness lingering at the finish.

World's Best Chocolate | SLOK Chocolate - Aged With Hops 72%
Dark chocolate bar with an infusion or flavouring

Pacari Chocolate (Ecuador) - Passion Fruit - Bronze (Score 86.6)

Our blend of premium dark chocolate and succulent passion fruit has quickly become a cherished favorite, and it's easy to see why. Let this chocolate gracefully melt on your tongue, carrying you away to the tropics with its cascading waves of tropical flavors. Take a bite, and you'll sense the sensation of lounging under the sun on Ecuador's famed beaches.

Pacari Chocolate - Passion Fruit | Bast Chocolate 2023
Dark chocolate bars with an infusion or flavouring

Pacari Chocolate (Ecuador) - Lemongrass - Bronze (Score 86.2)

Paccari's Dark Chocolate infused with Lemongrass presents a truly distinctive and tantalizing fusion, marrying the rich allure of dark chocolate with the vibrant essence of lemongrass. This exquisite blend encapsulates the essence of indulgence, bringing together two beloved flavors in a harmonious symphony that delights the senses and leaves a lasting impression with its unparalleled taste.

Pacari Chocolate - Lemongrass | Hello Chocolate Shop
Dark chocolate bars with an infusion or flavouring

Feliu Chocolate (Mexico) - Pitaya De Mayo 58% - Bronze (Score 86.1)

Gourmet dark chocolate, meticulously infused with Pitaya de Mayo, the exotic fruit derived from the Mexican cactus, also recognized as prickly pear. In the realm of bean-to-bar chocolate, surprises often emerge through inventive ingredients, and the inclusion of cactus pear—alias Prickly Pear or Tuna Fruit—epitomizes this creativity. Despite its misleading moniker, this fruit springs from the prickly pear cactus, resembling the shape and size of a pear. Be ready for a whirlwind of flavors: the initial spiciness tantalizes your taste buds, swiftly altering your perception of flavors. Picture the sensation of savoring watermelon juice—that's the distinctive taste lingering within this chocolate bar, complemented by delicate undertones of strawberry coulis. In the backdrop, a hint of sweet and acidic Seckel Pear emerges, while subtle notes of vanilla gracefully dance across your palate.

Feliu Chocolate - Pitaya De Mayo | Cactus Chocolate
Milk chocolate bars with an infusion or flavouring

Feliu Chocolate (Mexico) - Leche Y Vainilla 52% - Bronze (Score 86.0)

Velvety, rich milk chocolate boasting a substantial cocoa content. Crafted with premium cocoa from Soconusco, Chiapas, and the distinct essence of Papantla, Veracruz's vanilla. This is our interpretation of a timeless recipe, featuring an elevated cocoa concentration, pure vanilla, and a blend of 100% Mexican ingredients.

Feliu Chocolate Vanilla Milk

Ganaches, palets, ganache pralines, truffles

Flavoured ganaches or truffles with combination coating or filling

McGuire Chocolate (Canada) - Cafe Latte (Score 86.0)

McGuire's award-winning Latte Bar embraces a ganache infused with single-origin coffee, roasted in small batches by Epoch Chemistry of Moncton. Enjoy the ultimate coffee lover's delight in these meticulously crafted bonbons.

McGuire Chocolate - Cafe Latte Truffles

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