Food La La: Making chocolate at Kokoa Bar

Feb. 7, 2013 | 0 Comments

BY LINDSEY MURAOKA / Special to the Star-Advertiser

Since Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, I thought it would be appropriate to write a blog post about chocolate!

This week I checked out Kokoa Bar, a chocolate and dessert shop located in the Queen Kapiolani Hotel in Waikiki.

Ricard Muszynski is the owner and chocolatier of Kokoa Bar. He has a very impressive background, which includes training at the French Culinary Institute of America as well as awards and features on the Travel Channel, CNN, Forbes, and more.

Muszynski’s chocolates are beautiful and delectable with flavors made from local ingredients such as Hawaiian chili peppers, passion fruit, and coffee beans from the North Shore.

My favorite is the chocolate with wasabi peas. The mix of salty, spicy, and sweet flavors went nicely with the contrasting crunchy and smooth texture.

The chocolate is elegantly boxed and wrapped, which makes for a great gift.

The bonbons are named after streets or places in Hawaii.

These chocolates were custom made for Versace. Muszynski can create any type of customized chocolates for events or weddings.

Kokoa Bar also sells a variety of homemade ice cream served either in a waffle cone or as the filling in a cookie sandwich.

A selection of flavored almonds.

Chocolate fondue fountains can be rented for parties or events. You can also share a chocolate fondue pot with your friends at the shop (there are tables outside) for $8. It comes with cookies, pineapple and mango for dipping.

Waffles are made to order and are topped with chocolate (of course!) and creamy organic honey butter for $8. This one is a specialty waffle topped with ice cream and strawberries for $10.50.

Muszynski holds weekly chocolate making classes. I went to one of his classes this past weekend to learn how to make bonbons. Here’s video I took of the class:

This is what the chocolate looks like before it is melted down to be put into the molds.

We learned how to use a silk screen to transfer the designs onto the bonbons. These were all the different types of designs we could choose form.

Then the fun part was pouring the chocolate into the mold!

Then we decorated our chocolate using wasabi peas (my favorite!), oreos, dried pineapple and papaya.

With my friend Aya Nishihara and our decorated bonbons.

With my friend Aya Nishihara and our decorated bonbons

While we were waiting for our chocolate to set in the freezer, Muszynski’s explained to us all about the process of making chocolate. We also got a try a bunch of samples like chocolate covered papaya.

The finished product!

The chocolate making class costs $50 and includes 14 bonbons and lots of chocolate samples to enjoy. Check out Kokoa Bar’s websitefor more information and to sign up for a class, or call 922-3140.
Lindsey Muraoka blogs about food and drink for the Pulse. Contact her on Twitter or via email at

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