2023 NZ Vegan Chocolate Awards

The Vegan Society Aotearoa is delighted to announce the second annual Vegan Chocolate Awards. There are so many Kiwi made vegan chocolates available throughout New Zealand, that we felt it was time to offer these awards, to showcase the excellence to be found in our local chocolatiers.

Vegan chocolate is no longer just dark chocolate, there are many plant milk chocolates, there are inclusions, flavoured bon bons and truffles. Many of our favourite brands of drinking chocolate are “accidentally” vegan.

The awards have been created to allow both local and imported brands to show off the delights and tastiness of vegan chocolate. There are 8 categories in our awards, including the Supreme Award, which is given to the overall winner, the one chocolate that all the judges feel is simply the best!

The judging took place Monday 24th April from 9am til noon, at Khu Khu Eatery at 171A Ponsonby Road, Ponsonby, Auckland.

Our judges were Luke Owen Smith, a regular judge at the NZ Chocolate Awards, President of the NZ Chef Association, Jasbir (Jazz) Kaur, Food and Beverage industry judge Aaron Pucci, Chris Kinnell, local entrepreneur, restauranteur and experienced Awards host, Volker Maracek is an international Executive Chef with an impressive pedigree of running restaurants in top hotels and a very warm welcome to our Special Guest Judge, Floris Niu, all the way from Samoa, she is the founder of Ms Sunshine Organic Farms and operates a cacao agritourism experience.

Results and Photos 2023

Both Mind Your Temper ‘Speculoos’ And Lucid ‘Chuncho’ received our Supreme Award 2023.
Honest Chocolate; ‘Passionfruit Kawakawa’
Judges said; superb exciting. Takes you on a great flavour journey. Creative and well balanced. Great technical skill and balance of flavour. Good presentation and sutlety of recipe- the well unified elements mean you can experience them all at once.
Runner up
Mind Your Temper; ‘Caramel Biscuit’
Judges said; this is just yummy. Great aroma of the biscuit and caramel together. Great to tuck into on a cold day for warm fuzzies. A homely, nostalgic taste. Creative; nice mixture of textures. Good balance of chocolate biscuits and nuts.
Mind Your Temper; ‘Speculoos’
Judges said; a good balanced texture and a great shine. A creative and surprising use of a biscuit as the basis. A clean and simple finish. Crispy biscuit and smooth taste of the ’biscuit’ filling delightful.
Runner up
La Petite Passionfruit Caramel
Judges said; a good marriage of chocolate and ‘intense’ passionfruit. Good after taste.
Lucid ‘Chuncho’
Judges said; very unique flavour notes. A complex flavour journey. Lots of different flavours present; fruity, floral, nutty, earthy and a little spice. Exceptional melt. Great fermentation of the beans. High quality and skill demonstrated.
Runner up
Foundry ‘Kilombero Valley Tanzania’
Judges said; a sensitive roast profile and well-balanced flavour. Good melt. High fruity acids are intense and sing a good flavour that keeps going. Complex fruity notes.
Ao Cacao ‘43% Gianduja’ Judges said; smooth with a good texture. You could taste the plant milk which had a nice creamy texture. This chocolate melts on your tongue.
Runner up
Baron Hasslehoff’s ‘Mistress Tahini’
Judges said; its an interesting concept to use tahini. The sesame seeds add texture.
Trade Aid ‘Pure Dark’
Judges said; you can really taste the chocolate richness. It possesses a nice cracking sound when it breaks. Great melt in your mouth.
Runner Up
Wellington Chocolate Factory
‘Vanuatu Dark Chocolate’ Judges said; beautiful appearance, interesting texture. Chocolate is fruity and nice.
Shirl And Moss ‘Hazelnut, Orange and Sea Salt’
Judges said; lovely melt and smooth mouth feel. A rich hazelnut experience with a perfect amount of toastiness.
Runner Up
Trade Aid Dark Passionfruit Judges said; intense dark background with bright passionfruit flavour, bringing a long and lovely finish.
Wellington Chocolate Factory ‘Drinking Chocolate’
Judges said; old-fashioned hot chocolate. Nostalgic and comforting. Classic. Good depth.
Runner Up
La Petite ‘Mediterranean’ Judges said; inspirational. Interesting flavour contrast to a traditional hot chocolate.

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