It’s National Hot Chocolate Day – Take These Hot Chocolate Mixes Home With You

As if you need an excuse to drink hot chocolate.

by | Jan 31, 2021 | Food + Drink

Bottle of Saus surrounded by chicken wings and cauliflower.

Photo | Abby Wiseman

We are deep into the Hot Chocolate Festival season here in Vancouver. People are lining up around the block to get their mittens on the multitude of fun flavoured and insanely decorated hot chocolate concoctions local businesses have poured a lot of energy and love into perfected. We support that and hope you are getting out there. However, we hate lining up (COVID has broken us down on this slightly), so we decided to skip the queue and hunt down some hot chocolates you can take home.

Gem Chocolates – Can U Yuzu?

Photo Credit | Abby Wiseman 

Gem Chocolates is a Kerrisdale, well, gem that specializes in beautifully designed chocolates made with all-natural ingredients. For Hot Chocolate Fest, they’ve created a yuzu hot chocolate made with yuzu, cocoa butter, and cane sugar. It comes with a dash of cardamom and a cardamom and yuzu chocolate-dipped cookie. There is no white chocolate in the Can U Yuzu. However, the colour of the hot chocolate is deceiving – white, with a touch of yellow.  The texture is divinely creamy, and the flavour is a gorgeous balance between citrus and sweet. It does take a little finesse to make at home because the yuzu curdles when heated above 60° celsius (140°F). However, the extra attention to detail is worth it because the Can U Yuzu? is a joy to drink.

$9 per serving – Order Online

Melt Confectionary – Hot Chocolate Bombs

Photo Credit | Abby Wiseman 

Hot chocolate bombs are taking over social media, and, luckily for us, Kate Mathewson of Melt Confectionary has jumped on the trend  – releasing two prismatic heart bombs. The danger with any trend is that it could be all gimmick and no flavour. Mathewson, who came up through Thomas Haas, has built a reputation for making high-quality chocolate in nostalgic flavours, and she continues to please with these bombs. We tried the milk chocolate bomb filled with chai spices and the dark chocolate bomb with cinnamon and a kick of chile. The spice takes over often with spiced hot chocolates, but Mathewson did an excellent job of balancing the flavours. Plus, adults and kids alike will love the anticipation of waiting for a bomb to explode, revealing the contents inside.

$7.75 per serving – Order Online

Beta 5 x DL Chicken Shack – Hot Chocolate

A mug of Beta 5 and DL Chicken hot chocolate on a tray surrounding by the bag of mix and marshmallows

Photo Credit | Abby Wiseman 

For Hot Chocolate Festival, Beta 5 is teaming up with local favourites such as DL Chicken Shack and Superbaba. They are doing a collab a week for the festival – offering each collab by the cup for one week, then selling it by the bag the following week. We happened to be there when DL Chicken was available by the bag, so we picked up a bag of the spicy hot chocolate made with 60% dark chocolate and DL’s chile blend. It’s super savoury, spicy, slightly smokey, and totally delicious. They just announced this week’s hot chocolate collab by the glass – a caramelized white hot chocolate infused with pandan and coconut in collaboration with Miss Chen Kaya. The DL collab and Superbaba collab hot chocolate are now both available by the bag. 

$20 per bag – Order Online

East Van Roasters – The Licorice Parlor Hot Chocolate

A mug of Beta 5 and DL Chicken hot chocolate on a tray surrounding by the bag of mix and marshmallows

Photo Credit | Abby Wiseman 

East Van Roasters created a black licorice hot chocolate that will have licorice-heads out there swooning. Not everyone is into black licorice, but East Van Roasters has done a nice job of balancing out the flavours. The licorice is not overpowering and really complements the  70% dark chocolate. East Van Roasters is also a social enterprise run by the PHS Community Services Society. Every purchase goes towards providing training and work opportunities to women living in the Downtown Eastside.

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Excellent work. Well done you. Bravo.

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