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Koko Black

Founder of Koko Black Shane HillsLeading chocolatier Koko Black will launch its largest Australian salon at 140 Perth in late March, just in time for Easter.

Easter – it’s that time of year when chocolate gets the better of us. As a child, you’ll remember there’s nothing more satisfying than biting the ears off a rabbit – followed, of course, by as many bright foil covered eggs as you can fit in your mouth. But as an adult, it’s the pursuit of quality, rather than quantity, which motivates that sugar rush.

This Easter, chocolate lovers of Perth will be able to indulge in something really special – and certainly beyond the everyday blocks that line the supermarket shelves – with a new Koko Black salon set to feed the sweet tooth of the inner-city fold.

Renowned for selling sophisticated selections of thoughtful, handmade creations crafted from quality blended chocolate, Koko Black has already won over hoards of chocolate fans on the west coast thanks to its existing Claremont salon. But the opening of the new Perth salon in the inner-city 140 precinct is about to showcase their confectionary creations to a whole new group of cocoa aficionados.

Koko Black’s second WA space is set to be its biggest in Australia, stretching across 200sqm on the corner of William Street and Mitchell Lane, and will boast a dramatic design by Melbourne-based architecture and design company Russell and George.
As Koko Black founder and managing director Shane Hills attests, the chocolatier’s ethos and strength is a natural result of the combination of things they love doing.

“In a very considered way we bring together a passion for our product and service, striving to create an experience beyond the everyday, to really treat the imagination of our customers,” he says. “It’s very simple but rare in chocolate and confectionery.”

Mr Hills said the impetus behind opening the new salon was the realisation that although Perth had developed “incredibly” in recent years, the central business district was still underserviced for quality food.

“[We] are very excited about the launch and what it will bring to the city,” he said. “We offer a quality non-alcohol environment, which is perfect for post-dinner enjoyment and to try our extensive lounge dessert menu. It is still Koko Black but like nothing we have done before.”

Though Mr Hills was tight lipped regarding any new chocolates available exclusively to customers at the 140 salon, if the selection of local-inspired delights available at the Claremont store are anything to go by – they include a malt caramel using Little Creatures stout and a ‘truffle truffle’ using the fungal variety from The Wine and Truffle Co in Manjimup – sugar-addicts are in for a treat.

As for Mr Hills’ own picks from Koko Black’s extensive menu? “You must try our hot chocolate! It is made using a double brewing technique that takes one and a half hours. It is a dark chocolate blend that requires no added sugar and is super velvety and round,” he says. “My other favourite at the moment is our salted caramel pralines in dark and milk. The recipe has added cocoa butter, a technique going right back in time. The result is an intense caramel flavour that lingers, and lingers.”

Feast your eyes on the new store at 140 from late March – it’ll be open from daytime until late into the evening – and then, by all means, eat your way into a chocolate stupor in the name of Easter.

JENNIFER PETERSON-WARD

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