Hotel Chocolat sells out to Mars

By the way only brits are fooled (and perhaps americans) that these are quality chocolates. This is mostly sugar (30+%) and milk sold at a very high premia. Hotel Chocolat created the illusion that this was a premium product sold to the (lower) middle class. The brand name is the giveaway (why use the French word for chocolate?). The income squeeze made people realise that this was just ordinary cadbury type chocolate in a fancy packaging.

Last easter, went in to ceck out the easter eggs, left abruptly because of an exrtremely pushy shop assistant. 

Far too expensive anyway

Bought Mrs C an advent calendar from there last year. Was expensive but she'd accused me of never buying her one so I made a point of getting an enormous one. No idea if the stuff was any good although it wasn't all chocolate.

They are really good at slightly novelty festive chocolates and some unusual flavours and I look forward to the box that one work contact buys me every Christmas.

The Velvetiser is amazing, but I don't put any nasty HC chocolate in mine (despite the BS warning that it is "specially engineered" for HC products) <eyeroll>

I did try some Cadburys drinking chocolate to the Velvetiser machine which produced sugary milk. It only works with the specially engineered chocolate I'm afraid. 

As long as you use the flaky stuff (i.e. the real grated chocolate) and not powder it's fine. Charbonnel & Walker or F&M 70% both work well. 

You stick warm milk and chocolate - proper chocolate - in a shaker and shake for 10-15 seconds. It emulsifies properly and makes really smooth hot chocolate. And, unlike with the Velvetiser you can pretty much throw anything in - flakes , chips, bars etc... A few Terry's chocolate orange segments is amazing.

Respect for these guys.

They created a household name brand in twenty or so years, selling very ordinary chocolate to people who could buy Milk Tray, Quality Street or something similarly bland, but choose HC instead, because it's perceived as a slightly more elegant gift. 

If you have loadsamoney you buy flashier glasses/handbags/gladrags and the like because of the packaging or the perception.

I've never heard any dirt on them, doubt they've conned anyone, or acted on behalf of a slimy client knowing full well he's a slimy client, and have achieved what they have with vision and grit. 


"few Terry's chocolate orange segments is amazing"

I imagine it's take a bit longer than 15 seconds of shaking to emulsify a wedge of TCO?

Is the Montezumas in spitalfields still going? That was always decent.

A wealthy friend introduced me to laderach which is amazing but unjustifiably expensive for my whole nut tastes. 

Laderach is indeed amazing, and for chocolate that is more accessible, Lindt is lush. Venchi is also a solid 8/10. The best chocolate I ever had was aged ten somewhere in Belgium- it was some almond praline thing from one of their very many chocolatiers and omg.

Whittard’s do some nice hot chocolate, pretty rich.


If you can find Simón Coll Chocolat a la tasse bars, it makes fantastic hot chocolate. Grate it and blend into warmed milk. Best I've ever had.