Otekomachi Readers’ Choice of Chocolate – This Year’s Highly Recommended!
There are 2 events in Japan where we eat a lot of chocolates. The first one is Salon du Chocolat. This is organized by Paris every year and we have a Japanese version of this French event. The other one is Valentine’s day, however, we celebrate Valentine’s day here in Japan a little differently. Is it an occasion when girls express their love for boys but Japan has developed its own unique take on this day. On February 14th, young girls and adults buying chocolates for boys has been a trend. They give it to their friends, superior authorities at work and all of the people that they care about. This is called “Giri Choco” and it has nothing to do with love. However, the kind of chocolates that they give to who their main target has to be of high quality.
The market for this Valentine’s event is now said to be 15 billion yen, and famous patissiers are participating not only from Japan but from all over the world.
An Otekomachi Reader, which is issued by Yomiuri Newspaper (Most published newpaper in Japan), who loves chocolates dropped by Matsuya Ginza to have a taste of their Valentine’s chocolates, where they selected which products to recommend.
12 people chosen by Rieko Seto and one Otekomachi reader participated in this event. They evaluated 18 kinds of chocolates sold at “GINZA Valentine World” (January 30th – February 14th) held at Matsuya Ginza from various viewpoints such as the taste, appearance, packaging, etc. They based their choices on 7 themes, such as “This Year’s Highly Recommended!” “Chocolates You Should Gift Yourself” “This Is Insta-Worthy! A Very Visual Delight”, etc.
Thus, Diego Lozano’s Belem was chosen as “This Year’s Highly Recommended!”
A cake based on white chocolate and vegetable cream that is filled with Brazilian fruits such as Cupuacu. “The sweetness of the white chocolate and the citrusy-sweet flavour of the fruits goes really well!”, says Yuka Iketani. Makino also mentioned that Diego Lozano is a very popular patissier in Brazil. This time, Belem disembarks its journey here in Japan. Mami Mitsumoto stated, “The cake is really delicious! The patissier himself seems to also have great character, which made me decide to focus on him from now on.”