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Great Chocolate; in Thailand!

Michael Babcock, March 14th, 2011

Great chocolate is not something most people associate with Thailand, but I recently found some at a store called Melt Me.

Chocolate Store Sign

Chocolate store sign

Over the years, there’s been an increase in the availability of many Western foods, including baked goods and western fast food chains. Coffee stands are now found almost everywhere – at gas stations, in markets and in coffeehouses; you find coffee in western chains, Thai chains and small street stalls.

When I started traveling to Thailand (in fall 1992) there was virtually no chocolate available. Occasionally I’d come across a Lindt bar in a store somewhere; the bar invariably turned out to be somewhat chalky, old and flavorless.

(Click on an image to see a larger version.)

Paradise Park Mall

Aisles at Paradise Park Mall

When we are in Bangkok, we often go to malls to shop or to eat. One of the advantages malls is that they are air-conditioned: in perennially hot and humid Bangkok this is no small thing! Thai malls are significantly more lively than malls in the United States. Of course they usually have a large department store or two, many chain restaurants and stores, as well as Thai businesses selling anything you can imagine. Unlike U.S. malls, with their wide, empty, sterile, aisles, though, most malls also have less formal stands, reminiscent of market stalls, in many of the aisles: it’s a bit like a street market inside the mall. In addition to store-front restaurants, they include a food center, which is much like street food brought indoors.

Chocolate Stall

Tastings are popular!

For many years we’ve been going to Seri Center, which is now renamed Paradise Park, in Eastern Bangkok. Here’s the address: Srinakarin Rd., Nong Bon, Prawet, Bangkok 10250 Thailand. They have always had an excellent food center and interesting stalls; this is where Kasma goes to get her moringa oil. (See her blog Moringa (“Marum”).)

On our recent trip to Thailand we made an excursion to Paradise Park to buy some moringa oil and have lunch. We were heading to one of our favorite stalls, which sells passion fruit juice. As we were walking down the aisle I spied an interesting sign: Melt Me. We walked over and were offered tastings of three different chocolate products: a chocolate called Hokkaido dark, chocolate covered macadamia nuts and a green-tea/chocolate confection called Hokkaido Matcha). Update Note, March 2013: Unfortunately, Melt Me no longer has an outlet in Paradise Park. Please see our new blog on Melt Me Chocolate, Revisited. The rest of this blog is still accurate.

Hokkaido Dark Chocolate

Hokkaido Dark chocolate

Tasting the Hokkaido dark chocolate, it was obvious where the name “Melt Me” comes from. The dark chocolate is rich, creamy and bittersweet, almost like a truffle in its consistency; it does, literally, melt in your mouth. It’s a luxurious confection: rich and tasty. It reminds me of a house truffle that a (now gone) store called Cocolat in Berkeley used to make: I could never get enough of those truffles. We immediately bought a box of 15. It wasn’t cheap: 270 baht (about $9.00 at the time), so 18 baht (60 cents) a piece.

One nice thing about this dark chocolate is that it is very satisfying in small quantities: after one or two pieces, I was satisfied for the time. They are very rich.

Chocolate Covered Macadamia Nuts

Chocolate covered macadamia nuts

The chocolate-covered macadamia nuts were another treat. They use lightly roasted macadamia nuts and have wisely used partial nuts rather than whole nuts: the balance between chocolate and nut is great – neither one overwhelms the other. A box cost 350 baht, about $12.00 at 30 baht to the dollar.

I found the Hokkaido Matcha, chocolate and green tea, not very interesting.

One reason their chocolates are so good is because they are kept at a low temperature. Instructions say to keep them at 1 to 4 degrees centigrade, so they need to be refrigerated. When you purchase them, they are put in an elegant carry bag complete with a package of dry ice, to keep them cool until you get home.

The name “Hokkaido chocolate” refers to a Japanese-type of chocolate: the company is Thai-owned and operated.

Chocolate To Go

Melt Me

I highly recommend their Hokkaido dark chocolate and the chocolate covered macadamia nuts. If you can get to Paradise Park, plan on having lunch there: the food center has lots of delicious options.

It might be easier to go to the Melt Me shop on Thong Lo Soi 10. They also have gelato there, which would certainly be worth a try. Here’s the address: 1st floor, @ Arena 10 Thong Lor 10, 225/11 Soi Thong Lor 10, Sukhumvit Rd., Khlong Tan Nuea, Watthana, Bangkok 10110 Thailand. It’s not a very long walk from the Thong Lo skytrain stop.

According to the Bangkok Post, they have outlets at Siam Center and Central World.

Here’s a blog from Hungry in Bangkok on the restaurant: Melt Me. And here’s one from A Girl in Asia: Melt Me, Bangkok.

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Written by Michael Babcock, February 2011

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2 Responses to “Great Chocolate; in Thailand!”

  1. […] previously blogged on Melt Me in a March 2011 blog, Great Chocolate; in Thailand! which highlighted the Melt Me Chocolate outlet at Paradise Park Mall. Unfortunately, this outlet is […]

  2. […] blog posts about Bangkok, one link lead to another and I started reading about coconuts. Then chocolate. Desserts. Moringa Oil. Turns out everything I was reading about stemmed from the same […]