When we talk about premium chocolates usually Switzerland or European brands come to our mind. But recently when Royce launched their first outlet at JW Marriott in Bangalore after Mumbai, it changed my whole perspective about the Japanese chocolates.
Royce was founded in Japan in 1983 in Hokkaido, Japan’s northernmost island. Hokkaido is a spacious island located at the northern extremity of Japan and is renown for its rich natural environment and cold climate. So technically Royce is produced in Europe like climatic conditions in mist snow covered mountains.
In Indian, Royce was first launched in Mumbai and now Bangalore is the second destination, Avani Raheja and Samir Gadhok are the two people behind getting Royce to India and nothing could be a better choice then BBC (Bengaluru Baking Company) at JW Marriott for setting up the outlet. When you say, JW Marriott, then one could not miss the renowned celebrity Chef Jolly, who is quite a familiar face after Junior Masterchef, India, he shared his own experience about the Royce Chocolates.
Royce coming to India with quite a lot of chocolate variety, which will be available at BBC, JW Marriott from 20th June 2014. Their most famous range is Nama Chocolate, which has a texture like a hand rolled delicate truffles, which will melt in your mouth. Nama chocolate changed my opinion about the bitter chocolates and made me fell in love with bitter chocolates. There are some seven varieties (Equador Sweet, Pierre Mignon, Au Lait to name few) of Nama Chocolates available on a regular basis; also there are some special seasonal editions as well. The only condition that comes with Nama chocolate is it is temperature sensitive, so Royce has packaged it with a cooling bag of dry ice so that it can sustain in hot temperature of India.
Then comes the Criollo range, which is been made from Criollo beans of Venezuela, which is considered to be the most expensive cocoa bean in the world. Again Criollo range has two variety Bitter – Chocolate that fully conveys the intense ﬂavor of the rare Criollo cacao bean and Sweet – Moderately sweet chocolate with the delicate ﬂavor of the rare Criollo cacao bean. Criollo bars are fairly rare and should definitely be sampled if encountered and luckily I got the chance to taste Royce Criollo range.
If you think it’s over, there is more variety, next is Royce Pure Chocolate, perfectly shaped and textured, Pure Chocolate has six varieties available depending on the percentage of cocoa beans. Then there are milk chocolates, which made me feel nostalgic with one bite, as it’s been years since childhood that I tasted milk chocolate and Royce has done full justice to the milk chocolate range. These are three variants available – “Creamy milk and white”, “Venezuela Bitter & Ghana Sweet” and “Sweet and Milk”.
But Royce is not confined to Chocolates only, it has a whole range of other confectionary products as well like Baton Cookies, which are light and airy cookies coated with chocolate on one side, and comes in two exciting flavors Coconut and Hazel Cocoa. The Hazel Cocoa contained finely crushed cocoa nibs blended into a cocoa crust and were better than the coconut ones, as coconut flavor is quite common in Indian cookies.
The show stopper was yet to come, which was Chocolate-Coated Potato Chips, for those like me, who love savory desserts, this one is a treat, crispy potato chips coated with chocolate on one side, a perfect balance of sweet and savory. These are also temperature sensitive and should be stored in a cool place away from direct sunlight.
My personal favorites are Nama Ghana Bitter Chocolate and Chocolate Potato Chips.