Amano’s latest chocolate bar: Chuao 

Follow-up from related article: Guess the bean for a year’s supply of chocolate
Utah award winning chocolate maker, Art Pollard of Amano Artisan Chocolate, unveiled his latest creation this week in New York at the Summer Fancy Foods Show, following a month of mystery surrounding the beans’ origin. The new chocolate bar exclusively features single origin beans from Chuao, Venezuela. This new bar represents the first of its kind by an American bean to bar chocolate manufacturer.
Chuao beans are highly prized for their distinctive aromatic scent and flavor. They come from a small village in the northern coastal range of Venezuela known for producing some of the world’s finest cocoa beans. To visit the village, visitors must come by boat, on foot, or by helicopter; there are no roads. Until recently, Italian companies Amedei and Valrhona had exclusive rights to the beans. For several years, Amedei’s Chuao bar held the highest award possible in the fine chocolate arena, London’s Academy of Chocolate Golden Bean award. Chuao beans are difficult to grow and gain small yields compared to cheaper (but more bitter) Forestero beans.
Amano is no stranger to prestigious awards either. The Utah based chocolate company surprised European connoisseurs with an impressive list of awards. In 2008, the company surprised European connoisseurs when they placed 3rd in the Academy of Chocolate Awards with the Madagascar Bar. This represented the first time an American chocolate maker even placed in the competition, not to mention ranking above established industry greats Valrhona and Domori.
Amano’s new 70% Chuao Bar costs around $10 and has naturally occurring flavors of berry, almond, and bark. It contains only 4 ingredients, no emulsifiers, is single origin, fair trade and organically grown. The ingredients themselves are considered around the world among the best available.
Though it was only officially unveiled Sunday, bars are already circulating among Utah foodies. Both Liberty Heights and Tony Caputo’s Market carry it, as well as a full line-up of other Amano treasures. Additionally, Amano Chocolate opened a new outlet store beside the chocolate factory. Not only do they have a full line-up of Amano Products, but they have invited a guest chef to concoct a dessert line for the store. Read more about that here.  Ordering is also possible through the Amano website.
Amano Chocolate recently opened a new factory outlet store in Orem, Utah. The store, located just beside the Amano production facilities boasts a full line of Amano Chocolate products, including bars, nibs, and confections. Additionally, they invited pastry chef Rebecca Millican from New York to create elaborate fine pastries unavailable elsewhere.
The Amano brand is well-known as the best produced in the United States, importing the best available criollo beans from small cooperatives and fair trade farms. They surprised fine chocolate connoisseurs around the globe as the first American bean to bar producers to place in London’s Academy of Chocolate awards. The competition is respected as the most prestigious and discriminating in the world. For more info click here.
The store is open from 10 AM to 8 PM Monday through Friday and 10 AM to 6 PM on Saturdays. A giant Amano sign makes it easy to find on 450 S. 1325 W. in the heart of Orem.
Directions courtesy of Amano website: “To get to the factory outlet from Salt Lake City take 1-15 south toward Las Vegas. Take the Orem Center Street exit. Go to the east and take your immediate right on 1200 W. Drive south (about half a mile) to 400 South. Take a right and go under the freeway. Take your first left at 1325 West.” Map.
Expect some exciting changes too! In the upcoming months, a new chocolate line will debut. The mystery beans are shrouded in secrecy, however, if you guess their origin, you could win a year’s supply of Amano chocolate bars.


Utah added another notch to its gourmet belt this week, thanks to Orem’s Art Pollard, of Amano Chocolate. According to San Francisco International Chocolate Salon, Amano Chocolate is the best chocolatier in America. They awarded him the top and most sought after title, “Grand Award”.
On his blog, Pollard writes that he feels, “exceedingly excited and humbled to have won gold for best dark chocolate at all the shows. I keep saying humbled, but we honestly never expected to have this kind of feedback so early in our short history.”
This award comes in sequence with other highly regarded recognitions. Last year, he ranked 3rd in the world with the Madagascar dark chocolate bar at the London Academy of Chocolate competition. In total, he claimed 5 separate victories with Montanya, Ocumare, Jembrana, and Ocumare Milk Chocolate. The Academy is considered by many to be the authority on fine chocolate. The 2009 award marked the first time an American producer placed in the competition, and a surprising usurp to France and Italy’s domination in the fine chocolate arena.
The 4th annual Chocolate Salon will take place tomorrow 03/20/10 at the Fort Mason Center in San Francisco, a sweet finale to the city’s Ten Days of Chocolate celebration. Offerings and demos there range from elegant and ornate confections, bars, liquors, baked goods and books.
Amano Chocolates are widely available in specialty and gourmet outlets across the U.S. and Europe, and on the company’s website at Also, revisit the website’s blog for updates on new products and information about upcoming chocolate events. Congratulations, Art!