The Great War chocolate bar reigns supreme

The Great War Bar (Wellington Chocolate Factory)
The Great War Bar (Wellington Chocolate Factory)

The winner of Cuisine magazine's Artisan Awards 2016 is a Kiwi classic with a bit of a twist.

The Wellington Chocolate Factory (WCF) was named supreme winner for its Great War Bar described as a "coconutty, Anzac-biscuity treat" to honour the centenary of World War I.

They paired up with The Great War Exhibition in Wellington early last year to investigate how chocolate and war can mix.

The bar is based off of an energy boosting ration bar the soldiers ate during the war. This was made out of oatmeal, which led to oats being thrown in the mix for the Great War bar, literally.

The outcome is a coconut milk chocolate with Anzac biscuit crunch sprinkled on top.

The WCF's treat was chosen for the top spot over more than 60 entries.

The sustainable chocolate company is no stranger to winning awards as they were the runner-ups last year with their salted brittle caramel.

Head chocolatier Rochelle Harrison says they weren't going to stop until they won it.

The company has a real focus on sustainability and an ethical approach when it comes to what goes into each product.

Their beans are sourced from selected plantations around the world and they collaborate with local artists for the wrapper design.

The Great War Bar features artist Misery, who Miss Harrison says captured what is a touchy subject -- the war -- in an imaginative and accessible way.

The Wellington Chocolate Factory celebrating their supreme win

The supreme award is no mean feat for the WCF considering it opened its factory doors just over two years ago on Kickstarter.

A certain amount of money from each Great War bar bought goes towards keeping The Great War Exhibition running so the story of New Zealand's part in the First World War can continue.

"The partnership with The Wellington Chocolate Factory is an opportunity to voice out a nationwide appeal and stress the importance of learning from our past," The Great War Exhibition's  Lydia Randall says.

"We hope this campaign promotes greater significance and sends a meaningful message to the public as well as a feel good factor of purchasing this very special commemorative chocolate bar."

This is the eighth annual Cuisine Artisan Awards and editor Kelli Brett says it's a chance to support and highlight these producers.

"Now more than ever people are wanting to know the stories behind the food that they eat and drink," she says.

"Innovation and dedication are essential ingredients in the evolving food culture of New Zealand. It is inspiring and exciting to see and taste the diversity of entries received from across the country."

Head judge Fiona Smith says deciding the winners is always a tough task.

"We've had some incredibly interesting entries, with the most surprising being Duck Island's Roasted White Chocolate and Miso Ice Cream," she says.

The Wellington Chocolate Factory products are stocked in over 140 places around New Zealand.

Cuisine Artisan Awards 2016 Winners

Supreme Winner:  Wellington Chocolate Factory Great War Bar (Wellington), RRP $13.50

Supreme Runner-Up: The People's Bread Multigrain Sourdough (Wanaka) RRP $13

Pembroke Patisserie Gingerbread Biscuits (Wanaka)  RRP $8.50

Duck Island Roasted White Chocolate and Miso Ice Cream (Waikato)  RRP $13

The Headless Kombucha (Christchurch) RRP $5.50

Bonnie Canterbury Linseed Oatcakes (Auckland), RRP $8

Kapiti Artisan Bakehouse Ghost Chilli Ciabatta (Kapiti Coast) RRP $5.49

Alderson's Kawa Kawa Salsa Verde (Auckland)  RRP $8

Ludbrook House Merlot Grape Jelly (Northland) RRP $9

Frank's Sausages Frankfurters (Waikato) RRP $8.99