Since opening its first shop in 2004, Hotel Chocolat now has over 90 locations and is the only company in the United Kingdom to grow cocoa on its own plantation. The news Worcestershire had been hoping for, arrived back in August 2016, Hotel Chocolat was coming to Worcester. The new high street, luxury chocolate boutique also has a café (one of only a handful of Hotel Chocolat’s cafes in the country) serving its trademark real hot chocolate, teaolat, iced frappes, tea, coffee, ice cream, cold drinks and snacks.
I was invited for a tasting session at Hotel Chocolat, Worcester via Cathedral Square to sample a selection of chocolates from the brand new Spirit of Summer collection. Mr R came along with me just in case a second opinion was needed. As it was over 30 degrees outside, the offer to try an iced frappe on our arrival was very much welcomed indeed. I chose the classic Chocolat and Mr R went for the slightly more adventurous Salted Caramel Brownie.
The iced frappes are served in large plastic cups, with removable dome lids and a thick paper straw. I took the lid off mine, exposing the light, whipped chocolate mousse topping and I couldn’t resist dipping my finger in for a taste. Pushing the straw to the bottom to give it a good stir, I took a long sip of the cold, chocolatey drink. Although the frappe was absolutely divine, there was also a lot of it, so only managed just over half of it. Mr R on the other hand didn’t have a problem finishing all of his. At £3.95 each, they are great value for a drink of this size and quality, and a perfectly indulgent way to cool down.
The first chocolate we tried was the pink lemonade (from the chocs-to-chill box), a new summer flavour which the Worcester shop are sampling for the next 3 weeks in store, so go and check it out! Inside the dark chocolate shell is a sharp raspberry, lemon and white chocolate ganache. Enjoy them cold and straight from the fridge, just as you would with a refreshing lemonade. Our tongues even got a surprise tingle of fizz as we took a bite.
To follow, a tray of 3 brightly coloured chocolates were presented to us. The first being the strawberry milkshake (also from the new chocs-to-chill box), made from real strawberry and a whipping cream ganache, and again had been chilled to enhance the flavours. Although I’m not usually so keen on white chocolate, I could easily imagine indulging in one or two more of these along with a cold glass of prosecco.
Next we sampled the passion fruit cheesecake, a fruity and tangy chocolate from the new Summer Dessert box, encased in a milk chocolate cup. My favourite though was the blueberry cheesecake, and when I took my first bite the inside reminded me of the purple Liquorice Allsorts. Everything about this selection, from the vibrant colours to the refreshing, yet contrasting sweet and tart flavours screamed ‘Summer is here’! These would be ideal to offer guests at a Summer party or BBQ as an alternative dessert option.
After the tasting we were handed a goody bag to take away with us, which we are yet to enjoy at home. A perfect way to spend an afternoon.
All of the chocolates mentioned are available in the Worcester store and online from the new Spirit of Summer range, so next time you’re passing pop into the store and give yourself a treat.
*Although we were invited by Hotel Chocolat and did not pay for the samples and iced frappes mentioned above, I have written this blog post entirely truthfully based on the experience we had at the event. Thank you to Amy and the team at Worcester for hosting us.
Worcester, Worcestershire, United Kingdom – last visited in June 2017