It’s difficult to find people who dislike chocolate. Even if you’re not a fan of sweets, there are so many types of chocolates out there that can cater to different palates. From saccharine white chocolate to bitter dark chocolate, this “food of the gods” is the gift that keeps on giving. Craving for some yet? Then treat yourself to some artisanal pieces at these chocolatiers in Malaysia.

Like most foods out there, there are mass-produced ones and also artisanal ones. Chocolates are no different. You can choose to indulge a quick craving at your nearest 7-Eleven or do a bit of research and purchase something of a higher quality. Luckily for you, we’ve created this little guide.

You might already be familiar with one or two of these artisanal chocolatiers in Malaysia. Some of them source their cacao from other countries, while some choose to use locally-grown cacao to create sustainable bean-to-bar chocolate that is truly Malaysian in all aspects.

Whatever your choice, there’s one thing we can all agree on: these chocolatiers in Malaysia produce really excellent chocolate worth indulging in or gifting.

1
Benns Chocolate

The team behind Benns Chocolate hails from Singapore, but ships to Malaysia. The brand is extremely proud of sourcing its cacao beans from around Asia, including Lampang in Thailand, Vung Tau in Vietnam, Calinan in the Philippines, Anaimalai in India, and of course, Sungai Ruan in Malaysia.

The cacao beans from Sungai Ruan in Malaysia come from the Koh family farm, who has a 30-year history of growing, fermenting, and drying cacao beans. The chocolates have tasting notes of blackcurrants, raisins, and almonds. The mostly-fruity taste comes from the fact that the estate is close by to many fruit plantations in the area.

Benns Chocolate sells a variety of chocolates from chocolate tablets to cacao nibs, and even cacao tea.

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2
Chocolate Concierge

By now, the name Chocolate Concierge should already be a familiar one with most. With a shop in Bangsar Shopping Centre and a focus on celebrating cacao of Malaysian origins. Ning, the founder of Chocolate Concierge, is extremely passionate about his process. As he mentions on his website: “We are vested in each process from the farm to placing our chocolates in your hands.”

“Our chocolates are made with cacao beans that are traceable, environmentally sensitive, and sustainable,” he continues. He even extends his sustainability efforts by encouraging patrons to bring their own take-home boxes to be filled with chocolates if they’re not planning on gifting them.

Chocolate Concierge’s collection of sweets include chocolate bars, brittles and barks, sugar-free bonbons, and chocolates with soft fillings of local flavours, including some interesting ones such as sweet laksa.

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3
Cocoraw

You might have seen Cocoraw making its rounds in several flea markets and bazaars, but these handmade chocolate artisans also have a hole-in-the-wall kiosk in Bangsar Baru. These chocolatiers specialise in making chocolate truffles, all of which are produced in micro-batches using only the finest quality chocolates and fresh dairy with no preservatives. In the same vein, you’ll have to ensure that you finish these up quickly as they can’t keep for too long. Choose from local flavours such as Gula Melaka and Teh Tarik for a bit of a twist in your truffles.

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4
Jaws & Claws Chocolate

Have you tried Borneo cacao before? Then you’ll have to try Jaws & Claws Chocolate, a new artisanal chocolatier that focuses on bean-to-bar chocolate with single estate origins. The chocolate bars that the brand sells are made in small packages, with each one showing which estate the beans are sourced from. Unfortunately, Jaws & Claws Chocolate are only available to purchase in selected spaces in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. It’ll definitely make for a good souvenir if you’re in the state.

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5
Love18

Deliciously handmade, silky and buttery chocolate truffles comparable to a certain Japanese chocolate company — you can find all of that and more at local chocolate maker Love18. For now, the only brick-and-mortar place where you can get these chocolates is at the brand’s chocolate cafe in Setiawalk Puchong. Otherwise, you can also purchase these chocolates online, although we’re certain they’re much better purchased from the store. These boxes of truffles make perfect gifts, whether to others or to yourself.

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6
Nayuta Chocolatasia

You might have spotted these pretty chocolate bonbons when you visited Isetan The Japan Store, but do you know who they are? Nayuta Chocolatasia is a combination of Japanese craftsmanship with Southeast Asian cacao. The brand sources cacao from various regions, including Malaysia. It prides itself on creating chocolates that suit the Asian palate — specifically, milky, caramel-infused and soft textured chocolate. The packaging of these chocolates are also extremely beautiful, making them perfect gifts for just about anyone.

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7
Seniman Kakao

The people at Seniman Kakao only has one aim: to take Malaysian cacao, grade it by hand, and add as little cane sugar as necessary. Its belief is that simple and good ingredients are all it takes to create tasty chocolates. We have no qualms because Seniman Kakao’s chocolates are extremely good. The brand prides itself on sourcing cacao beans from Malaysian farmers, going on a mission to reinvigorate the Malaysian cacao industry and bring quality Malaysian chocolate to the world. We sincerely hope they succeed.

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PohNee Chin
Editor, Kuala Lumpur
Poh Nee is the editor and writes about travel and drinks. When she's not living out her holiday dreams via Google Earth and sipping on an Old Fashioned down at the local bars, you can find her snug at home bingeing on Netflix and mystery fiction. Reach out to Poh Nee via email at pohnee@lifestyleasia.com.