Read our Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser review to discover why you really should spoil yourself with this little miracle machine. Scroll down to the bottom of the page for our ‘one year on’ update.
Do you love hot chocolate? Enjoy a little self-indulgence? Want barista quality hot chocolate at home? You need the Velvetiser.
What is the Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser?
Hotel Chocolat call their little marvel an ‘in-home drinking hot chocolate system.’ Which is possibly the clumsiest strapline I’ve ever seen. In plain English the Velvetiser is more or less a milk frother. Though that’s selling it woefully short. But the basic premise is the same.
The jug heats up and whisks milk and chocolate flakes to make a frothy hot chocolate. If all that sounds a little underwhelming please do read on. Because the Velvetiser is no ordinary kitchen gadget and the hot chocolate it makes tastes out of this world.
Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser review: From ordering to tasting
After ordering from the Hotel Chocolat website, which for such a great brand is surprisingly naff, the Velvetiser arrived after 48 hours. Everything was securely packed and even the packaging reflected the luxury you expect from Hotel Chocolat. In fact, everything to do with the Velvetiser is touched with luxury. It’s all beautifully presented. Which is all well and good. But does it do the job? Can the Velvetiser really make the ultimate cup of hot chocolate? There was only one way to find out.
Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser review: The road test
The proofs in the pudding. Or in this case the drinking. Is their hot chocolate all that Hotel Chocolat claim?
I do hate modern ‘text speak’ so forgive me but…. OMG. This is the chocolate drink of your dreams. And who doesn’t dream of chocolate?
I do consider myself a hot chocolate connoisseur. And the hot chocolate you can make in the Velvetiser is right up there with the best. Actually, I’ll go further and say you can’t make a better hot chocolate at home. Not out of a packet at least.
But let’s start at the beginning.
What’s in the box?
Hotel Chocolat know the value of getting the ‘opening the box’ excitement just right. Open the outer box and the goodies are neatly stored in Hotel Chocolat wrapping paper. Rip the paper off with all the urgency and excitement of a kid on Christmas morning and you’ll find the Velvetiser itself, two ‘pod’ cups and your selection box of chocolate flakes. All individually boxed and packaged. There are also instructions, the inevitable upsell (one free box of chocolate flakes if you order at least one other) and a nicely produced booklet all about hot chocolate.
Summary of contents
- 1 x Velvetiser.
- 2 x cups.
- 1 x Selection box of chocolate flakes – two each of salted caramel, milky chocolate, hazelnut, 70% cocoa and 100% cocoa. Each packet makes one cup of hot chocolate.
Making your hot chocolate
The Velvetiser is really easy to use. The brief summary is:
- Make sure the whisk is in the Velvetiser.
- Pour your choice of milk up to the level marked.
- Empty a packet of chocolate flakes directly into the Velvetiser.
- Replace the lid of the Velvetiser and switch on. The ‘on’ button lights up.
- After approximately two and a half minutes the ‘on’ button will go off. This means your drink is ready.
- Decant your hot chocolate into your cup.
And that’s it. But if you’re making more than one cup you do have to rinse the Velvetiser out with cold water to return it to the right temperature before making a second cup. Which is annoying. But it doesn’t take long and it’s well worth doing to make sure every cup of hot chocolate is perfect.
Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser review: The good and the bad
For a hot chocolate maker the Velvetiser isn’t cheap. In fact, it’s very expensive. Around £100 expensive. Considering you could buy a milk frother for less than half that price why would you consider the Velvetiser?
Well, the great thing about the Velvetiser is…
Everything about it is top-quality. From its eye-catching design to the high-quality manufacturing. The Velvetiser is a top-notch gadget.
Hotel Chocolat partnered with Dualit to make their device. And you can certainly tell that from the high-quality finish, reliability and efficiency of the Velvetiser. You can choose between charcoal, white and copper finishes. I went for copper but in retrospect should probably have got for neutral white. Ah well….
Whichever colour you choose the Velvetiser is really easy to use. It’s a little ungainly at first when you pour the hot chocolate out but you’ll quickly get used to it.
It only takes a couple of minutes to make a cup of hot chocolate and I must admit the whole process is fun. But of course, no matter how nice it looks the important thing is how good the hot chocolate tastes. And I have to say it’s off the scale.
It’s absolutely delicious. And I’ve tried every flavour. The hot chocolate is very, very rich, ultra-smooth and tastes divine. It’s a chocoholics dream.
And the not so great thing about the Velvetiser is…
The cost. That’s more or less it. The Velvetiser itself will only leave you with a few pence change from £110. And it doesn’t stop there. The price per drink is £1.20. The equivalent drink in a Hotel Chocolat cafe is £3.50. But…. The instant hot chocolate I usually drink works out at 10-20p per cup. That’s a huge difference. You do need to be aware of the ongoing expense before you buy the Velvetiser.
However, that said, comparing the hot chocolate the Velvetiser makes to that from a jar of instant is like saying cubic zirconia is the same as a diamond.
So, the hot chocolate the Velvetiser makes is delicious. But I do have a slight issue with the Velvetiser. And I admit this is a personal bugbear of mine. But you may share my chagrin.
The temperature of the drink when it’s made isn’t hot. In fact, it’s more warm than hot chocolate. It’s the kind of drinkable temperature that you’ll be familiar with if you visit a coffee shop like Costa.
This may not bother you. It probably won’t. And my daughter always rolls her eyes when I complain about it in Costa. But I prefer my hot chocolate…hot. The clue’s in the name after all.
To be fair Hotel Chocolat do say to warm your cup first if you prefer a hotter temperature. But my personal preference would be for a hotter drink without having to go through additional prep.
If you want your chocolate hot warm your cup beforehand. But be careful the cup doesn’t become too hot to handle.
Finally, and this is a minor irritant but you do have to rinse the Velvetiser out between drinks if you’re making more than one at a time. Which is a bit of a pain. Though that’s probably me being picky.
Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser review: In a nutshell
- High-quality product.
- Looks great with a choice of three colours.
- Makes wonderful hot chocolate.
- Range of different flavours available.
- Easy to use.
- Quick and easy to clean.
- It’s expensive.
- Temperature of the drink may not be hot enough for you.
- Only makes one drink at a time.
- Did I mention it’s expensive?
Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser review: Should you buy it?
There’s no doubt the Velvetiser delivers a lovely cup of hot chocolate. And it’s easy and fun to use. It’s also very simple to keep clean. But as we’ve said above it’s expensive. Not only the initial purchase of the Velvetiser but at £1.20 for every drink you make it costs so much more than the alternatives.
But you get what you pay for. The Velvetiser itself is a very high-quality product and the hot chocolate is super tasty and very indulgent. And that’s the key. The Velvetiser is an indulgence – it’s probably not something you’ll use every day. But as a treat on a weekend or as a pick-me-up on a winter evening it really hits the mark.
The bottom line is that if you like hot chocolate, you’ll love the Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser. I’m a chocoholic and use mine two or three times a week. I wouldn’t be without it. So, it’s a thumbs up from me and a highly recommended purchase.
Where can I buy the Velvetiser?
The great news is that you can but the Velvetiser directly from Amazon. You’ll find the best prices at Amazon, you have more choice and they have an excellent returns policy. And they can deliver it to you in 24 hours. But you can buy the Velvetiser from the Hotel Chocolat website.
It’s not the best website in the world but it at least allows you to checkout as a guest so you don’t have to go through the rigmarole of opening an account for a one-off purchase. Ordering is a quick process and they have different delivery options. I chose standard delivery and received my Velvetiser within 48 hours. Though I did slightly begrudge paying an extra £4 for delivery after spending over a hundred quid with them.
However, if you buy direct from Amazon you can get free delivery and they have a great returns policy. Though I’ve no idea why you’d want to return the Velvetiser once you’ve tasted the hot chocolate.
My Velvetiser review update – one year on
Yep, I’ve been the been the proud owner of my Velvetiser for well over a year now. So, I thought it’s a perfect time to update this review.
Are we still friends? Am I still as enthused with the little choccy marvel as I was a year ago? Or has our relationship hit the skids? Even more importantly, is the Velvetiser still working well or has it gone the way of many electrical items – either banished to the back of the kitchen cupboard or rehomed in the skip?
First of all, you’ll be delighted to know my Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser is still working perfectly. It’s never given any trouble and works as well now as it did when I first took it out the box. Which isn’t a surprise. As I mentioned in the review the build quality of this device is exceptional. It is really well made and still looks brand new. And, of course, it’s still turning out high-quality barista style hot chocolate. And believe me it’s worked overtime during lockdown.
What has changed is the different flavours of chocolate flakes available for the machine. It really does do my head in when manufacturers produce flavours for a limited time. Hotel Chocolat do this sometimes. So, the flavours available at any one time can vary.
One flavour I won’t be trying again is the dark chocolate. It really is incredibly bitter. Though I’m sure there are plenty of lovers of this drink out there. Top of my list though is the mint. I love it. Orange isn’t far behind. And I’m rather partial to the ginger too.
That said I have also been buying plenty of the milky flavour and using syrups to create a whole range of different beverages. I’ve also been making my own flakes.
Read more: Is a Velvetiser worth it?
Grate down a 30g bar of chocolate and you can have any flavour you like. I use this handy little grater to grind Caramac and other choccy bars. As Jonathan says in the comments below you can also buy chocolate chips from vendors to make your own flakes at a far cheaper price that Hotel Chocolat charge for their own branded flakes.
To cut a long story short then. I still heartily recommend the Velvetiser. You can see it in all its glory on Amazon. You could even buy today and get it delivered to you tomorrow. You’re only 24 hours away from stunning hot chocolate. Click here to shop now.
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