Have you had any foods from Iceland? You can probably find skyr, a.k.a. Icelandic yogurt, at your nearest Whole Foods. But you’d probably have to head to the icy land itself to try the national dish, hákarl—fermented shark. It’s made with Greenland shark, a cousin of the Great White. A catch means lots to eat: The shark grows to an average of 21 feet long and hits the scales at 2,200 pounds—more than a ton (2,000 pounds). The bigger boys reach 24 feet and 3,100 pounds.
Now, chase that image from your mind, toward what might be Reykjavik’s greatest treat: chocolate from Omnom Chocolate, a confectionary shop located on the premises of the chocolate factory.
The bean-to-bar* artisan line is so wonderful that we put Reykjavik on our destination list. If the chocolate that’s available in the U.S. is this charming, what about those ice cream sundaes? Yes, we’ll walk into the Reykjavik shop and say, “We came from New York for the ice cream!”
And for the chocolate bars and almonds, too, of course!
Each bar has a beautifully designed wrapper that embraces an animal from Scandinavian folklore. The designs are so enchanting that we haven’t thrown out the empty wrappers. We’ll re-purpose them for something nice.
Just in time for Halloween, we’re highlighting two bars that celebrate the holiday:
This alluring, small-batch chocolate line comprises chocolate bars and what the industry calls panned products†, like chocolate-covered almonds. Many of the ingredients are organic.
Not only is the packaging enchanting; the bars have a lovely grid on one side and the inclusions on the other side. These are chocolate bars to admire before you take a bite.
The flavor pairings are inspired by Iceland.
Co-founder Kjartan Gíslason worked as a chef across Europe for nearly two decades before discovering bean-to-bar chocolate. He teamed up with his childhood friend Óskar Þórðarson to begin sourcing cacao beans around the world.
They set up a small production lab and were joined by pastry chef Karl Viggó Vigfússon and designer André Úlfur Visage, the creative force behind Omnom’s striking packaging.
The name Omnom is the Icelandic version of the American nom nom nom (or num num num, depending on how your mother spoke it). They got it right, except that nom nom is modest. We might have gone for Yippee!
There’s free shipping over $ 50 to the U.S. and Canada. Head to OmnomChocolate.com. You won’t have any problem selecting $ 50-worth.
Some products are available on Amazon. But Amazon charges their sellers a 30% commission. Let all the money go to Omnom, so they can continue to create ravishing chocolate.
*Bean to bar means that the company buys raw cacao beans and toasts and blends them to their own unique formula. The opposite of bean-to-bar is purchasing the chocolate ready-made to be melted by the chocolatier and turned into bars and bonbons. This ready chocolate is known as couverture (coo-ver-TYOOR).
†Panned products get their name because the handmade products are coating by tossing them in a pan with chocolate. Chocolate-covered nuts are an example.
‡Fermented milk products are also known as fermented dairy products, cultured dairy foods, cultured dairy products, and cultured milk products. They are dairy foods that have been fermented with lactic acid bacteria such as Lactobacillus. Buttermilk and kefir are examples.