Newtown is beetroot, marshmallow and toasted coconut, Marrickville is loaded with micro-brewed ale ganache and black-sesame nougatine. Potts Point is simply sugar free.
Sydney Chocolate is a big idea from hospitality newcomers Tahra Camidge and Lucas Edmunds. They’ve devised chocolate blocks to represent, define and affectionately rib nine different suburbs. Each has a unique filling and an accompanying tag line.
“We approach it with a bit of tongue-in-cheek. We want to know what the flavour of the area is. It has to have a strong identity, and then we have a bit of fun with the tag line,” says Camidge. One of the most thematically on-point flavours is Bondi’s: organic quinoa and pools of salted caramel with the tagline “Don’t in-salt the hipsters”.
“Well, with Bondi Hipsters being so famous, it had to have puffed quinoa in it,” says Camidge. “Everyone eats puffed quinoa there!”
Others include Palm Beach: fresh Madagascan vanilla-bean white chocolate with the tagline “So vanilla it won't wrinkle the sheets”.
Sydney Chocolate is not just a marketing gimmick, though; the idea is matched in quality. The cocoa that forms the base of Camidge’s bars comes from Swiss company Felchlin, one of the world’s most acclaimed chocolate producers.
Camidge was also careful to source produce that met her expectations for social and environmental sustainability. “All of our cocoa is sourced through this particular cooperative which is very proactive in establishing farms that don't underpay people to harvest cocoa.”
Camidge designs, cooks and packages all of the chocolate bars by hand; an impressive feat considering she’s only recently ditched her day job as an immunologist. “I took one of those sabbatical years where you take a break and come at something from a new perspective,” she explains.
She studied pastry at Le Cordon Bleu before applying for an apprenticeship at Bourke Street’s Lumiere and part-time jobs at Black Star Pastry and Gelato Messina. “I went into it wanting to do chocolate. At every turn I'd try to learn a bit about chocolate.”
Sydney Chocolate is currently only available online, at the Taylor Square Saturday markets and at a few select vendors. Camidge is looking to expand her reach to more market stalls and a few additional stores while working on more suburb ideas. She says her most common requests are for Parramatta, Castle Hill and Manly. “If you know the area you can probably treat it a lot better, that's probably why I haven't done a lot of western suburbs yet. I want to get a feel for what will work there, and won't be offensive.”
Sydney Chocolate is available at Taylor Square markets every Saturday. It’s stocked in Opus Paddington, the Katoomba Co-op and Hornsby’s Next Chapter Lifestyle and Living. It can also be ordered online at sydneychocolate.com.