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Please use the form on the right to contact us.
If you prefer you can call us on +61 2 6685 7974.

 

2 Lawson Street
Byron Bay, NSW, 2481
Australia

+61 2 6685 7974

LOVE BYRON BAY ....SPECIALISTS IN INTERNATIONAL AND LOCAL CHOCOLATE.

Love Byron Bay creperie and chocolate boutique is dedicated to sourcing, creating and sharing a quality chocolate experience from Byron Bay, Australia. We'll cultivate your understanding of cocoa, stimulate the palate with a discerning appreciation, fire the imagination with unique chocolate encounters and share the passion for this legendary food of the gods. Exceptional chocolate infused with delicious flavours, irresistible aromatic characteristics and high quality cocoa. 

Blog

Choc Recipes, Choc Facts, Choc Travels and our regular Chocoholic-not-so-Anonymous feature. All this and more in our weekly blog.

Choc God : Norman Love

Alison Campbell

“Chocolate is my passion,” says Norman Love, who dreamed of making chocolate that was visually stunning as well as delicious. And so a hand-painted moulded chocolate dream was born.

Norman Love has been producing beautiful handcrafted chocolate in Fort Myers, Florida, USA since 2001.

With an emphasis on artistry, premium ingredients, and innovative flavour combinations, the renowned chocolatier has earned significant acclaim for his edible masterpieces which are molded and then filled with the finest chocolate imported from Belgium, France, and Switzerland. The pumpkin white chocolate bonbon is almost too gorgeous to eat. Using only the freshest ingredients, his recipes call for pureed raspberries, bananas, ginger, caramel, passionfruit, and hazelnuts, to name a few.

An early love of art and baking first inspired Norman Love to pursue a career in the culinary world. After learning the craft of pastry making in France, he accepted the role of corporate executive pastry chef at The Ritz-Carlton. During his 13 year tenure with the luxury hotel, Love oversaw all pastry and baking operations, opening 30 resort pastry kitchens across the globe.

In 2001, the culinary virtuoso left the corporate world and entered into private enterprise. His adventurous flair and love of the avant-garde stood him in good stead. Originally intending to sell wholesale to acquaintances he had made in the restaurant industry, Love quickly realized that there was great consumer demand for the ultra-premium chocolates he was producing, and opened his flagship chocolate salon. In the 16 years since, Norman Love Confections has opened three additional chocolate salons, along with an artisan gelato shop.

Norman Love Confections has been named the best premium chocolate company in the United States six times since 2006. 

Source: normanloveconfections.com

Choc Facts : Belgiums' chocolate postage stamps

Alison Campbell

It is a chocolate lover’s idea of a perfect postage stamp: Everything is cocoa-scented and even the glue tastes like chocolate when licked. To celebrate Belgium’s renowned chocolatiers, in 2013 the country’s post office, Bpost, launched a set of limited-edition stamps that smelt and tasted like chocolate.

More than 500,000 stamps were printed on special paper imbued with the aroma of cocoa and covered in a glue to looked and smelt like chocolate and melted on the tip of your tongue just like a piece of chocolate.

The five limited edition stamps from the Belgian post office Bpost celebrated the country's renowned chocolatiers and featured chocolate in all its forms.

The secret of Bpost’s tasty stamps was in their glue:  It contained 40 percent of a cocoa product and was developed by an international team of fragrance and taste experts from Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland after a thorough research on scratch-and-sniff technologies.

The special stamps featured famous Belgian chocolate in its various delicious forms: sprinkles, chocolate, nutella, rough pieces and chocolate bars. “It is not the first scented stamp … but this time it has been combined with a flavour,” the Belgian postal service said.

Sourcebbc.com

Chocoholic not-so-anonymous #12

Alison Campbell

My name is Lana.
I am a chocoholic.

Are you inordinately fond of chocolate?  
I can say yes to some extent. 

Chocolate. Incentive or reward? Or both? 
Incentive for me for sure, I see it as giving me the energy to kick off and do the work. 

When did you know you were a chocoholic?
It's been a natural trait of me for as long as I remember, but it's more about the rich experience you can have with just a moderate quantity of chocolate. 

White, milk or dark?
Dark all the way! 

Describe your favourite chocolate in three words.... 
Rich, smooth, intense. 

Tell us about your most memorable chocolate experience?
Times that I've shared chocolate with others around me. 

Where is your favourite place to indulge your choc-habit?
Anywhere and everywhere! Haha

Secretly solo or shared indulgence?
Shared indulgence. 

Top choice-choc destination?
Byron bay so far. 

Favourite product in the Love Byron Bay chocolate range?
Dark chocolate covered macadamia in the Love Byron Bay range. 

Lana Mohammed is a yoga teacher from Sydney.

Choc Travel : Modica, Italy....one of the world's best kept secrets

Alison Campbell

For years, travellers have been drawn to Sicily’s intriguing history, smoking volcanoes and famed cuisine, but somehow the island’s distinctive chocolate – made in the Unesco World Heritage town of Modica and inspired by the traditions of the ancient Aztecs – has remained one of the world’s best-kept secrets.

When the Spanish were ruling Sicily in the 16th Century, conquistadors went to Mexico and brought back cacao and the recipes needed for what the Aztecs called xocoàtl, a paste ground by a smooth round stone called a metate. Unlike the often over-sugared and creamy snack we know as chocolate, the original xocoàtl was bitter and used to enhance sauces for meat dishes, grated over salads or eaten on its own as a dietary supplement. If prepared with certain spices, it was considered an aphrodisiac.

In Modica, generations of families have followed the same techniques, using metates crafted with lava stone from Mt Etna. Locals would mix the chocolate paste with sugar, “cold working” it so that the sugar doesn’t get hot enough to melt; it gives the treat an unusual but deliciously crunchy texture. Then, they would incorporate flavours typically enjoyed on Sicily such as lime oil or pistachio. Today, flavourings are occasionally adapted to more modern tastes such as the current European fashion for sea salt chocolate.

As soon as I arrived in Modica, my eyes took in the sights of baroque churches, piazzas lined with palm trees and entrances to tiny, twisty alleyways. My nose, on the other hand, was unable to escape the ubiquitous scent of cocoa and exotic spices.

The first shop I encountered was the grand Antica Dolceria Bonajuto, which dates back to the 1880s, and is still run by the family who founded it. When the rest of Europe began to develop a taste for milk chocolate in the 19th Century, the Bonajuto family eschewed the practice and continued making dairy-free, dark chocolate in the Aztec style. All along the counter were dishes filled with samples infused with chilli, cinnamon, lemon oil, sea salt, vanilla, caramel and other flavours.

Just down the road is Antica Dolceria Rizza, which opened in 1935 and makes their now-renowned treats with flavours such as fiery ginger. At Caffe del’ Arte, which doubles as a café, I had the opportunity to sip hot chocolate alongside chocolate-covered fruit and typical Sicilian pastries like cannoli.

Modica’s businesses are serious about preserving – and celebrating – their chocolate traditions. (Even when most of Modica’s infrastructure was destroyed in the 1693 earthquake, the chocolate industry survived). In 2013, the Consortium for the Protection of Modica Chocolate published recipes dating back to the 1740s, and in December, an annual festival called ChocoModica melds the town’s two most important features: chocolate and baroque architecture. There’s even a dedicated chocolate museum, the Museo del Cioccolato (Corso Umberto I, 149, 97015; 39-347-461-2771), located within the Palace of Culture. Inside, almost everything is made out of chocolate, from classical-style statues to a relief map of Italy, and there are videos demonstrating how the chocolate is made along with a valuable archive of historical recipes.

Recently, Modica and the surrounding area were chosen as a filming location for a popular BBC mystery series, bringing a new wave of tourists to discover the secret of Modica’s chocolate as they follow in the main character’s footsteps. But even if the secret gets out, the unusually prepared treat remains nearly impossible to find outside of Italy.

Source: bbc.com
Photos: Antica Dolceria Bonajuto

 

Choc Boss: Pana Barbotins, Pana Chocolate

Alison Campbell

Pana Barbounis has some chunky ambitions for his raw chocolate brand...Pana Chocolate. The 41-year-old entrepreneur is aiming for the world’s number one spot for raw chocolate...and he's well on his way to achieving that goal. Pana Chocolate is made from vegan, organic ingredients with no refined sugar and using minimal heat (raw) and it's proving a huge success around the world. Pana Barbotins is this month's Choc Boss.

What was your favorite chocolate treat as a child?
My mum would always treat the kids to something sweet after school, and although it
may not have been vegan this definitely started my love of chocolate. 

How did you end up becoming a chocolatier?
A close friend of mine asked me to try some raw chocolate a few years back now and it was in that moment I just knew it was the right journey for me. I spent six months developing Pana Chocolate, getting the balance of flavours right, the texture right and using the right ingredients. I tested it amongst friends and friends of friends until I was happy. And happy is what I’ve felt from the beginning and still now.

White, milk or dark?
Always dark.

Describe your favourite chocolate in three words....
Moreish, decadent, satisfying.

Tell us about your most memorable chocolate experience?
Meeting Joanne Harris, author of Chocolat.

Where is your favourite place to indulge your choc-habit?
At work, it’s an everyday occurrence! 

Secretly solo or shared indulgence?
Both, although if I’m indulging solo you’ll find me enjoying vegan ice-cream
smothered in chocolate, roasted nuts and fruit. 

What's the most unusual chocolate you've ever tasted?
It was one of my own creations, a lavender chocolate which reminded me of potpourri. 

What is the mark of an exceptional chocolatier?
Being thorough with your research, understanding your customer and their needs,
placing importance on creating experiences and not just making a product, 
and gaining experience in all facets of business yourself.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to follow in your footsteps?
Pana Chocolate is a business founded on a deep passion for quality ingredients, the health of your insides, and a desire to make the world a little nicer through sustainable practices. Having a strong vision for what you believe in and want to achieve is the greatest place to start.

Pana Barbotins is founder of Pana Chocolate.
Pana's delicous range is available from our Love Byron Bay Boutique,
or from our online store... love-byronbay.com/chocstore.

Choc Recipe : Pumpkin Spice Choc Chunk & Hazelnut Skillet Cookie

Alison Campbell

Imagine a big cookie that you can eat with a spoon, straight from the pan. Soft in the middle, but slightly crunchy on the edges. Filled with pumpkin spice flavours, bits of dark chocolate chunks and hazelnut butter throughout, and topped with crunchy toasted hazelnuts. It is as divine as it sounds. The cookie happens to be vegan, free of refined sugar and made with whole spelt flour. It’s lightly sweetened with just a bit of coconut sugar and maple syrup. A super decadent but perfectly wholesome cozy winter treat. 

Ingredients

For the Cookie
¼ cup pumpkin puree
2 tbsp coconut sugar
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
2 tbsp melted coconut oil
½ cup + 2 tbsp whole spelt flour
½ cup hazelnut or almond meal
¼ tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp freshly ground nutmeg
¼ tsp ginger powder
⅛ tsp ground clove
⅛ tsp sea salt

For the Topping
¼ cup chopped dark chocolate
A few spoonfuls of hazelnut butter (optional, but delicious!)
¼ cup hazelnuts, chopped

Method

Preheat the oven to 350F. Spray or grease an 8-inch cast iron skillet (or one large or 2-3 small ramekins) with coconut oil and set aside. 

In a medium bowl, mix together the pumpkin puree, coconut sugar, maple syrup and coconut oil. In another bowl, whisk together the spelt flour, hazelnut or almond flour, baking soda, spices and sea salt. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the bowl of wet ingredients and mix well with a wooden spoon to combine. Add about half of the chopped dark chocolate and stir once more.

Press the dough evenly into the prepared skillet (it should be about ½-inch thick). Add a few teaspoons of hazelnut butter on top of the dough. Top with the remaining chocolate and chopped hazelnuts.

Bake in the oven for 12-15 minutes, or until the edges are slightly golden. Do not over bake. This cookie is better when the center is a little underdone. Remove from the oven and let cool for 3-4 minutes. Eat straight from the pan with spoons (top it with a scoop of ice cream if you'd like!). The cookie is best eaten when still slightly warm.

Notes

*To make your own pumpkin puree, slice a pumpkin in half, remove seeds, and place the two halves cut side down in a baking dish or baking sheet. Bake for 30 to 50 minutes at 400F (cooking time will vary depending on the size of your pumpkin), or until the flesh is really soft. Scrape flesh and place in your food processor or blender. Blend until you get a smooth puree.

Makes one 8-inch skillet cookie (6-8 portions)

Sourcethegreenlife.ca
Photos: Sophie Bourdon

Choc God : Paul A Young

Alison Campbell

He's the flavour alchemist and master chocolatier who burst onto the international chocolate scene six years ago with challenging and exotic creations, wild and wonderful flavours. 

Paul A Young wasted no time in securing himself a spot at the forefront of the chocolate world. Trained by the best, (he started out as Marco Pierre White’s pastry chef) Young has become one of the UK’s best known chocolatiers by changing the way we think about flavours. Young has a reputation as an incredibly creative flavour alchemist who often develops flavour combinations that are original, experimental, sometimes daring, yet always perfectly balanced. From his famous Marmite Ganache, to his popular Port & Stilton truffle and Cigar Leaf Caramel, there’s nothing run of the mill about his chocolates. Whether his creations elicit an unashamed “love or hate” reaction they will force you to change your perception of how chocolates should be made. 

Young is the only chocolatier in London working in a truly artisan way. He and his team make all their creations completely by hand in the kitchens at each shop, in small batches and at every stage using fresh ingredients. Compounds, concentrates, essences, preservatives and additives are not used. Young is a groundbreaking and inspirational chocolatier. His passion for his craft and his cutting edge creativity have won him numerous awards and led to him being ranked amongst the world’s best chocolatiers. 

After studying hotel catering and management at Durham and Leeds Metropolitan University, Paul quickly worked through the ranks of a restaurant kitchen to the position of head pastry chef for Marco Pierre White at Quo Vadis and Criterion. He then began to specialise in chocolate, and opened his first shop on Camden Passage in Islington in 2006 with his business partner James Cronin. Since then Paul has been creating products that have won numerous industry awards, wowed customers and earned him the reputation he has today.

His first book ‘Adventures with Chocolate’ won the World’s Best Chocolate Book at the Gourmand Cookbook Awards in Paris, was shortlisted for the Andre Simon Award and included in the Independent’s Top 50 cookbooks. In 2014 Paul was named Outstanding British Chocolatier by the International Chocolate Awards.

Source: chocablog.com
and paulayoung.co.uk

Choc News : Halal Chocolate Products Take Off as Sweet-Tooth Muslims Seek Fix

Alison Campbell

Muslim countries are turning into fast-growing markets for chocolate, and whilst there is no such thing as halal chocolate, one Asian country is betting more people around the world are going to want a broad range of flavoured chocolate products ...that still comply with the religion’s strict food laws.

Malaysia doesn’t grow much cocoa, but it has become the continent’s No. 2 processor by grinding beans imported from neighboring Indonesia, the largest producer outside of Africa and home to the world’s biggest Muslim population. With a majority of its own people classified as Muslim, Malaysia already sells flavoured chocolate products in compliance with Halal principles - which forbid the use of alcohol and some animal products.

Islam is the fastest-growing religion on the planet and may have 2.8 billion faithful by 2050, according to the Pew Research Center. Global sales of Halal-certified chocolate confectionery will reach $1.7 billion by 2020, growing at a 5 percent annual rate that exceeds the 4 percent gains expected for all chocolates, according to Euromonitor International Ltd. Malaysia is hoping the growth will help to boost exports that were a record last year.

“Halal certification is regarded as essential in emerging, Muslim-majority markets like Indonesia and Malaysia,” said Emil Fazira, senior research analyst at Euromonitor in Singapore. “In markets where Muslims have increasing purchasing power, halal-certified products are expected to be preferred over uncertified products.”

Demand

Based on the teachings in the Koran, the certification doesn’t just apply to food ingredients. Processing machines also must avoid alcohol used in cleaning products as well as many animal-based lubricants -- including emulsifiers or gelatins extracted from hogs.

Dazzle Food which sells specialty couverture and consumer chocolates, became fully Halal in 2009. In addition to the domestic market, it exports to Singapore, Indonesia, China and the Middle East. The Selangor-based company said the certification helped boost sales by 20 percent to 30 percent over the past three years. Demand may grow even faster this year, it said.

Muslim-dominated countries in central Asia and the Middle East provide some of the biggest opportunities for increased exports as their economies expand, according to the Malaysian Cocoa Board. In many, Halal-labeled products aren’t niche markets but mainstream staples.

“For countries in central Asia, their confectionery industries are developing and growing,” Norhaini Udin, Director-General of the Malaysian Cocoa Board, said in an interview at the board’s Nilai office on the outskirts Kuala Lumpur. “The Muslim community is more cautious now. If you don’t carry the halal logo, you can’t capture their market.”

Boycott

Malaysia doesn’t just sell chocolate. A large part of its exports are cocoa products, fillings and coatings made on Halal-compliant equipment, Norhaini said. Last year, overseas shipments of cocoa beans and products were valued at a record 5.74 billion ringgit ($1.3 billion).

The word Halal means “permissible” and is part of a system of morals known as sharia. In countries with Muslim minorities, the Halal certification has sparked calls for boycotts of products with the Halal label.

Nestle SA stopped Halal-certification of retail chocolate products sold in Australia as of March 2016. Other chocolate brands may comply with Islamic principles but aren’t labeled Halal. That’s not an issue in Malaysia, where all the foods that Nestle sells there, including Kit Kat, are Halal-certified. Malaysia has 51 chocolate manufacturers and confectioneries and 194 local chocolate producers, selling about 1.095 billion ringgit a year, according to cocoa board data.

Growth

The country is focusing on four regions to boost sales, Norhaini said. The country already has more than 50 percent market share in cocoa powder and butter in Southeast Asia, and 30 percent in the rest of Asia, New Zealand and Australia. In the Middle East it holds a 20 percent market share for cocoa butter and powder imports and in eastern Europe it has a 15 to 17 percent share of chocolate ingredients. Top customers in that region are Russia, Ukraine and Kazakhstan.

“By 2020, we should be able to capture 20 percent from the current position for overall eastern Europe," Norhaini said.

Importantly for chocolate lovers, Dazzle says the Halal certification doesn’t affect taste.

“The thing about chocolate is there’s a whole amount of science involved,” company spokeswoman Awatif said. “The tempering, refining, conching, the things you put inside. I wouldn’t say there’s a specific difference in taste, it depends a lot more on the processes rather than whether it’s Halal or not. It’s the process that matters more.”

Sourcebloomberg.com 
 

Chocoholic not-so-anonymous #11

Alison Campbell

My name is Yvonne.
I am a chocoholic.

 

Are you inordinately fond of chocolate?  
YES! I loooooove high quality raw vegan chocolate... It is part of my daily ritual... it makes me feel happy, calm, nurtured and loved... you can almost always bribe me with chocolate. As long as it is organic, vegan, raw, and sustainable.  

Chocolate. Incentive or reward? Or both?  
Definitely both. I love to nurture my being with chocolate...it must be the magnesium and antioxidants, right? 

When did you know you were a chocoholic?
From the moment I was born! lol. Honestly, while all my friends wanted cheap ice creams and lollies, I was already grabbing for the expensive chocolate and ice cream. And the more I delve into chocolate the more I love true hand-made chocolate.

White, milk or dark?
Now only ever dark. Vegan. 
Sugar free, organic and sustainable. 

Describe your favourite chocolate in three words.... 
Silky, smooth, love.

 

Tell us about your most memorable chocolate experience?
I'll have to share two. 
Firstly, a chocolate fountain on our Valentine's wedding day. Oh my goodness...dunking fresh strawberries, raspberries and all the summer fruits in the world into running pouring chocolate...it was literally heaven on a stick. Maybe I was high from our day too? 
And secondly, being in the Caribbean and having the opportunity to taste organic chocolate straight from the pod. The sweet white slippery fruity delight encasing the bitter cacao nib within just like nature intended.. totally balanced. It was a very special moment.. and I so wish I could have brought a big pod back to Australia with me. 

Where is your favourite place to indulge your choc-habit?
Anywhere, anytime.
After Kundalini yoga there is nothing more special then a raw chocolate with Christmas spirit, or freshest peppermint oil in it. 
Or in the Love Byron Bay Crêperie and Chocolate Boutique for an indulgence and chat with Alison, Aaron or the other friendly staff! 

Secretly solo or shared indulgence?
When I am out I always share. And I am forever giving Chow Cacao as gifts to my Oil Tribe all over the globe. 
Even to strangers when I am in Love Byron Bay Crêperie and Chocolate Boutique. 
At home.. at night about 11pm... totally solo! Totally happy. Totally satiated. 

Top choice-choc destination?
I thought it was France. 
But after going there last year... I was a little disappointed. Too much sugar and dairy for me.
So, now... anywhere with special friends or loved ones. 

Favourite product in the Love Byron Bay chocolate range?
Chow Cacao by Trudy. Locally made by a gorgeous friend of ours! It is organic, raw, vegan, no processed sugars
and is filled with delicious organic fruits, nuts, and the best essential oils in the world. What else could you ask for? 

Yvonne~Ongkardev Tribe is an advocate for  
long life, health and happiness, a Kundalini yoga teacher
and an independent distributor for Young Living Essential Oils.
longlifehealthandhappiness@hotmail.com
www.youngliving.com