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Amano Artisan Chocolate
Amano Artisan Chocolate's Raspberry Rose bar won a gold award in the International Chocolate Awards, Americas Competition 2017. Amano opened in 2007 in Orem and is "America's Most Highly Awarded Chocolate Maker," according to its packaging.

The International Chocolate Awards, Americas 2017 competition, announced on June 27 that Utah artisan chocolate makers Amano Artisan Chocolate and Solstice Chocolate have won a total of 10 awards across a number of categories.

Amano took gold for their Raspberry Rose bar in the "Dark chocolate bars with inclusions or pieces" category. The company also won a silver award in the same category for its Cardamom Black Pepper bar, as well as winning two additional silver awards, one for its Mango Chili bar in the "Dark chocolate with flavoring" category and one for their Dos Rios bar in the "Plain/origin dark chocolate bars" category, and a bronze award for its Cuyagua bar in the "Plain/origin dark chocolate bars" category. The new awards add to the company's already impressive list, supporting their "America's Most Highly Awarded Chocolate Maker" packaging claim. Each of these bars are available on the Amano website.

Solstice took home a gold award in the "Flavored white chocolate bars" category for its Brown Butter White Chocolate bar. The company was also given a silver award in the "Plain/origin dark chocolate bars" category for its 70 percent Kilombero Tanzani bar. Use the store locator on the Solstice website to find where the chocolate is sold nearest you.

Both companies won national gold awards in the "Plain/origin dark chocolate bars" category, Amano for its Dos Rios bar and Solstice for its 70 percent Kilombero Tanzani bar, and Amano also won an additional national silver award in the same category for its Cuyagua bar. National awards are given to Grand Jury finalists when there are 10 or more entries from one country in each category.

Amano and Solstice aren't the only great local chocolate makers — Utah is home to nine artisan chocolate makers and boasts an impressive availability of artisan chocolate thanks to local chocolate expert Matt Caputo.

According to its website, the International Chocolate Awards were held between March 29 and April 4 in Hoboken in the New York Metropolitan Region. The Americas Competition 2017 was judged alongside the Asia-Pacific Competition 2017, and judges came from the U.S., Europe, Japan and South America, as well as from the competition's international Grand Jury. Combined with the Asia-Pacific competition, there were more than 1,000 products registered for the event, including more than 650 chocolate bars. The entire competition currently hosts a number of regions around the world from Britain to the Italian/Mediterranean area, and this year's regional winners will eventually have the chance to compete in the World Final competition.

For a full list of winners and more information about the International Chocolate Awards, visit the organization's website at internationalchocolateawards.com.