“ Brand: Hotel Chocolat „
Shopping with my mum yesterday, we had a quick browse rounf the Hotel Chocolat shop in Nottingham, where we were offered a free sample of the Mojito Cocktail chocolate . My mum declined as she is tee-total, but I, ever happy at the prospect of free chocolate, happily guzzled mine down . It's safe to assume that I liked it, as I then spent 6.50 on a little box of eight cocktail chocolates.
There are four flavours in this box : Margarita, Mojito, Cosmopolitan and Chocolate Martini , and with two of each flavour you can, if you're a generous sort, share and compare with a friend . I'm NOT the generous sort however, and with the reasoning that I would certainly need to eat both chocolates of a flavour in order to write an accurate review, happily kept the lot to myself.
The box recommends chilling these chocolates in the fridge for an hour or so before eating, so thats what I did, before taking them upstairs to bed with a good book!
A margarita is traditionally made with Tequila, Triple Sec (an orange flavour liquer), and Lime Juice . It's served in a martini glass , the rim of which is dipped in lime juice and then in salt.
The Margarita chocolate is enrobed in a silky coating of milk chocolate, criss crossed with accents in green and orange. The green naturally represents the lime aspect of the drink, although I'm not too sure what the orange accents are intended to represent. Taking a sniff, the main smell of this chocolate is certainly lime.
Taking a bite, I can see that the chocolate coating is rich and thick and there is a pale yellow cream filling. Having barely scraped the chocolate off with my teeth, I'm already getting that telling sensation that this chocolate is planning to pack a punch, and a real bite confirms this. There is a real alcohol kick to this chocolate - I get that burn at the back of my throat I often get when downing shots.
The lime flavour is clear and tangy, contrasting with the sweet milk chocolate and delivering a real kick of flavour, ably assisted by a subtle but still very present orange tang. There is also an ever so slight hint of saltiness here .
Without a doubt one of my favourite cocktails to drink, a mojito is a drink with strong flavours of lime and mint, a little sugar and ome white rum, served iced with a lime wedge, and is a wonderful refreshing summer drink.
The chocolate version is encased in a white shell, criss crossed with lime coloured chocolate and dark chocolate accents. Taking a bite into the thick white chocolate shell, the initial flavour is simply the sweetness of the white chocolate, and then my tastebuds are assaulted with a strong lime and mint flavour, while my throat yet again burns from the powerful alcohol kick of the run. The inside of the the chocolate is a smooth creamy paste speckled with mint leaves.
My word, this chocolate is powerful - delicious, and certainly an accurate interpretation of the mojito flavour, but the alcohol burn with this one lasted quite a while, and I would say this particular chocolate is not for the faint of heart.
I imagine this cocktail is probably one of the best known, being the staple diet of the SATC girls. Vodka, Cointreau, Cranberry Juice and a dash of lime juice are added to a mixer, given a good shake, and served over cracked ice in a martini glass .
This is another white chocolate coated one, with light and dark pink accents along the top. Again, the white chocolate shell is thick, leading to a smooth cream filling, which tastes fruity, although I detect more orange flavour, with the cranberry being a lot more subtle. There is still a hefty kick to this , but nothing near as powerful as that of the Mojito or Margarite flavours, and I found this one much easier to enjoy as it didn't leave me with the burning throat sensation . The sweet white choclate also remains a strong flavour, whereas in the others the chocolate has tended to be quickly eclipsed by the alcohol content .
Last but not least :
This is a cocktail I'm actually not too familiar with, and I haven't been able to find any conclusive recipe on the internet, so I'm going into this blind. I do know from a quick scan of the ingredients listing on the box that this contains vodka though, as the other spirits listed on the box have all already been accounted for in the previous three chocolates.
This chocolate has a thick dark chocolate shell, with white and red lined accents on the top of the chocolate shell, which is again satisfyingly thick- in fact it seems thicker than in the other three varieties, and had a strong bitter taste to it . The filling of this chocolate is a rich velvety chocolate colour, and the main flavour of this is simply good quality dark chocolate with a powerful vodka kick . This is the simplest of the assortment flavour wise
I really enjoyed this little chocolate selection. The chocolates themselves were attractively decorated, and laid out in the box in such a way as to leave the flavours clearly identifiable .
I think my favourite flavour was actually the chocolate martini flavour - I loved the simplicity of it . I did enjoy all the flavours immensely, althoug I would say that people who dislike strong alcohol flavours would probably not enjoy these chocolates. At £6.50 these are quite expensive, but I do think they are of good quality.
These chocolates are not fair trade, as Hotel Chocolat in fact own their own cocoa farms, and only smallholdings are eligible for fair trade status on their produce .However, Hotel Chocolat do prvide funding and resources for the areas around their Cocoa farms in Ghana - providing education equipment and school uniforms, repairing properties, and providing tools for the farmers to use on their own smallholdings.
I heartily recommend this chocolate box - the perfect size for a self indulgent treat, or to share with a good friend over a glass of wine . They are chocolates to be enjoyed slowly and savoured, rather than just guzzled down .
4 stars out of 5 - one off for that strong alcohol burn!