Diamine Chocolate Brown: Ink Review

Hi there fountain pen friends! Madigan here. I was so excited to use Diamine Chocolate Brown in this week’s Monday Matchup and for this ink review. There are a variety of fantastic brown inks out there but this is such a rich hue! It feels like writing with a melted chocolate bar. It’s also great because it comes in a variety of sizes (and prices!). You can get a 80ml bottle for $14.95, a 30ml bottle for $7.50, ink samples for $8.50, or a 2ml ink sample for $1.25. Here is what I thought about this beautiful brown ink.

Supplies Used:

Smear Test (Dry Time):

  • Slow– This ink has a very very long dry time. When I used it on non-absorbent TomoΓ© River paper, it took incredibly long. You might want to go with a more absorbent paper to cut the dry time.

Drip Test (Water Resistance):

  • Low-You can still tell that there was ink there, but it spreads out and lines virtually disappear.


  • High– Basically not difference between the first swipe and the third! This ink is highly saturated and isn’t going to give you much shading.

Ease of Cleaning:

  • Easy– It may take slightly longer than an ink with a lighter hue, but it will clean up quickly.


  • Low-This is a dark ink, so it is harder to see shading. There is a small amount but when compared to others, the shading is low.


  • Medium– While wet, it flows nicely from the pen.

Packaging and Aesthetics:

  • 80ml glass bottle with box, 30ml plastic bottle, ink cartridges, and ink samples available!
  • The bottle has a skinnier opening than others, but it’s still easy to fill a pen. If ink was low, it could be problematic. 
  • Pleasing design but not necessarily a desk piece.

I love Diamine Chocolate Brown! It was really fun to work with and is serious enough for workplace writing. The only problem I had with it was the dry time, but nib size and paper adjustment could make that less of an issue. It was fun to write with and to do art with! 
Do you have a favorite brown ink? 
Write on,

2017-10-11T14:37:59+00:00 September 11th, 2015|Ink Reviews|17 Comments
  • Tom Johnson

    Madigan, I too love the deep, rich color of this ink. Thanks for the review, this will be going on my want list. Diamine has so many wonderful shades of ink. My Diamine inks are wonderful and behave so well, even if they take a little longer to dry on quality paper.

    • Madigan

      Hi Tom! I think it’s worth the wait for Diamine. I particularly liked this shade- like you said, so rich! πŸ™‚

  • Rob

    Beautiful color and review. The ink has a surprising amount of grey in it.

    • Madigan

      Hi Rob! I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed it. It’s a great ink. πŸ™‚

  • Lovely review. Almost makes me consider brown inks. Its interesting that you said there's no shading because your pictures show a lot of shading. Is there less than your pictures show?

  • pepperpath

    great review! haven’t tried Diamine Chocolate Brown yet. I love brown inks and have many, De A: JSBach, J Herbin: de Bresil, Iro: yama guri and Stipula: Sepia are my favourites right now.

    • Madigan

      Hey Pepperpath! I’ve tried a few of those but not all! I’ll have to ink up some of my pens… πŸ™‚

  • Jared

    You already have my favorites above. i have pens inked with both Noodler’s Walnut, & PR Chocolat (and/or its “fast dry” sibling)

    • Madigan

      Hi Jared! Ha! Great minds think alike. Maybe the PR Chocolat fast dry would have worked better for this work. Something to think over for next time… πŸ™‚

  • Bob Cochran

    Your review is persuading me to buy a sample of the Chocolate Brown. I enjoyed your Monday Matchup and this review of the ink.

    • Madigan

      Hi Bob! Yay!! I think you are really going to enjoy it. πŸ™‚

  • Kenneth

    Favourite Brown – Diamine Golden Brown – gorgeous.

    • Madigan

      Ooooh! I’ll have to give that a try, Kenneth. Thanks for the suggestion. πŸ™‚

  • Otter

    I have this ink and it’s so like chocolate it makes my mouth water! πŸ™‚ Lovely deep shade and very saturated. Diamine Golden Brown is also beautiful and gives Iroshizuku Ina-ho a run for its money.

    • Madigan

      Hey Otter! A second vote for Diamine Golden Brown. I will be checking that ink out shortly. Glad you enjoyed the review. πŸ™‚

  • Mike

    Nice review, Madigan. I don’t have any Diamine Chocolate Brown ink, but my favorite brown is Private Reserve Chocolat. It’s rich, shades beautifully, and dries reasonably fast. I often use it to writie critiques of student work. (When I want a darker brown – to look more formal or “professional” – I used Noodler’s Brown or Noodler’s Walnut.)

    • Madigan

      Hi Mike! A quick drying ink would have definitely helped in this work. If I ever do something like this again, I’ll us that one instead. πŸ™‚