Despite the recent truffle kerfuffle, we like Hotel Chocolat. Not only do they make some of the finest cocoa products known to mankind, but they like to send them to us here at Chocablog so we can tell you just how good they really are.
Liquid Chocolat is the name of Hotel Chocolat’s new drinking chocolate. It comes packaged in a plastic bottle with a snazzy looking front label with gold highlights (matching the lid) which not only tone in very well with the brown hues of the contents but also give the whole thing that touch of ‘posh’.￼
Now when I was but a mere slip of a lad, one of life’s great pleasures was a 10p cup of hot chocolate from the machine at the swimming baths on a Saturday afternoon. These days I reckon the same beverage wouldn’t be as welcome. Indeed, I rarely partake of a cup of drinking chocolate these days, as I find the added sugar makes the whole thing too sickly, so when I saw that this stuff promises to be ‘not too sweet’ my curiosity was well and truly aroused.
Unscrewing the lid and removing the seal revealed the contents – different coloured flakes of pure chocolate which gave off a wonderful cocoa aroma. Definitely not your average choccy drink.
The ‘recipe’ is hidden under the back label, which peels away to tell you how to get the best from your purchase (or sample, as the case may be). I’m not sure about this idea, because unless you’re very careful to replace the label you’re likely to lose half of the instructions. having said that, making cocoa is not rocket science. There’s also a link to a web page which offers an interesting variety of alternative uses for this stuff, from chocolate soup (?) to chocolate paint (kinky!) and winter warmers (rum, whisky, brandy choc).
So, down to business. Five (yes, five) spoonfuls of choccy flakes were added to a mugful of milk in a saucepan and the whole lot was gently brought to the boil, then allowed to simmer for a minute while I whisked it. It wasn’t too long before the milk turned a satisfyingly chocolately brown and the smells of cooking cocoa wafted skywards. It smells delicious.
As it was my first taste I decided against adding any alcohol (tempting as it was) so as soon as my minute was up, I turned it out into my mug and gave it a stir. The first taste confirmed that Hotel Chocolat were (of course) correct. It isn’t that sweet at all. Instead what you get is a subtle yet rich chocolate taste without any of the cloyingly sweet aftertastes other drinking chocolates can have. I’m now looking forward to trying out some of the variations suggested on the HC web site.
As you’d expect, this stuff isn’t cheap. Hotel Chocolat produces premium quality goods, and as with all good things there’s a price to pay. Having said that, it is exceptional. A great treat for yourself or for your chocolate-addicted loved ones.
- Buy it online from: