best artisan chocolate in Iceland
I’ve learned–since embarking on my chocolate travel research in 2009 –that great chocolate can be found just about anywhere. I admit to being surprised when a friend returned from Iceland and sent me some excellent chocolate from a popular artisan chocolate maker. I’ve since learned that there are others, making Iceland a destination I’d definitely like to include in my research for Chocolatour and my quest for the best artisan chocolate in Iceland.
Manitoba connection to Iceland
But I’d first gained insight into the wonders of Iceland and its fascinating history via the New Iceland Heritage Museum located in Gimli, Manitoba, Canada, just 20 minutes from my home. The museum has a comprehensive exhibit depicting the arrival of the first Icelanders to Willow Island–near what is now Gimli–back in 1875.
Did you know that Gimli, Canada, is or has been home to the largest Icelandic lineage outside of Iceland? And that Tergesen’s General Store of Gimli has the most extensive collection of Icelandic books outside of Iceland?
Investigating chocolate in Iceland
But let’s get back to the chocolate.
I included HR Chocolate of Reykjavik in the first volume of Chocolatour: A Quest for the World’s Best Chocolate as I was impressed with the creativity of master chocolatier, Haflio Ragnarsson who is also the creative force behind Mosfellsbakari, a top rated Icelandic bakery on TripAdvisor.
And more recently, I had the opportunity to taste test the selection of artisan bars made by bean-to-bar chocolate maker Om-Nom Chocolate of Reykjavik. What a delight! And what great packaging. Very colourful and creative.
Om Nom works with cocoa beans from exotic destinations such as Madagascar and Papau New Guinea. I love chocolate made of beans from Madagascar, so it was no surprise that I really enjoyed Om Nom’s. The one flavour I didn’t particularly like was the one made with Icelandic liquorice. I suspect that is an acquired taste!
The company that is best known for Icelandic chocolate is Noi Sirius, Iceland’s leading confectionery manufacturer. They are not a small batch artisan chocolate maker, but rather, a large, well-established company that has earned the love and respect of Icelanders throughout the country. I think I’ll have to check them out.
Have you been to Iceland? What has most impressed or inspired you? Have you used the Guide to Iceland? Did you find it helpful? I look forward to the discussion. Walking the halls of the Lakeview Resort in Gimli–where a menagerie of Icelandic vistas is on display–has certainly piqued my interest in this Nordic country.
Until I can arrange a visit, I’ll have to be satisfied with my annual trek to Islendingadagurinn, Gimli’s Icelandic Festival. Hope to see you there–or in Iceland!