Attention Chocoholics: 2015 Vancouver Hot Chocolate Festival Starts Jan 17

Photo credit: Nonie | Wikimedia Commons

Photo credit: Nonie | Wikimedia Commons

There’s nothing like a hot chocolate to warm up on a damp winter day in Vancouver.

But how about a dark hot chocolate made with caramelized bananas and spiced rum? Or a kalamansi lime hot chocolate? Or a hot white chocolate blended with black sesame seeds? Or a Baileys-infused warm white chocolate served in a large syringe?

No, I’m not making these up.  These are just a few of the offerings at the fifth Vancouver Hot Chocolate Festival, Jan. 17-Feb. 14.  Two dozen local cafes, bakeries and chocolate shops are offering up 57 crazy variations on hot chocolate over the 29 day festival. (In case you’re curious, the drinks mentioned above are – in order – Bella Gelateria’s “Erin Gone Bananas,” Chocolate Arts’ “Put De Lime in De Coconut,” Gem Chocolates’ “Cocoa Lily,” and Mink Chocolates’ “Flu Shot.”)

Photo credit: Rick Chung | Flickr

Photo credit: Rick Chung | Flickr

Participants range from venerable Vancouver cafes like 49th Parallel and East Van Roasters to fine chocolateries like Thomas Haas and Schokolade, bakeries and patisseries like Terra Bread and Thierry and even cocktail bars like Uva. With each passing year, the festival’s “chocstars” outdo themselves with increasingly elaborate and zany takes on hot chocolate, incorporating off-the-wall ingredients, unexpected flavour combinations and even booze. Each drink is served with a small specialty from the particular establishment, from a doughnut at 49th Parallel to a gelato cookie bar at Bella or a chocolate caramel from Thierry.

Photo credit: christopher cornelius | Flickr

Photo credit: christopher cornelius | Flickr

Offerings vary from location to location and also change according to date. A complete list of participants and their drinks and a handy walking map are available on the official festival website. But to get you in the mood for sipping, here are a few more unique hot chocolates on offer this year:

  • Balsamic Desiderato at Terra Breads: Hot chocolate prepared with Cacao Barry Extra Brute cocoa powder and Acetaia Reale Balsamic Vinegar of Modena topped with whipped cream and cocoa balsamic glaze. Served with a chocolate Maldon salt truffle cookie.
  • Black Widow at Uva Wine Bar: Uva’s hot-chocolate-inspired cocktail: reposado tequila influenced with cacao beans and coffee, Cherry Heering liqueur, Amaro averna, Bittered Sling plum and root beer bitters. Served with zeppoli (Italian doughnuts).
  • Homemade Oreo Hot Chocolate at Butter Baked Goods: A dark chocolate hot chocolate with vanilla bean, whipped cream and homemade Oreo cookie crumbs on top. Paired with a homemade Oreo cookie.
  • Sizzling Spice at Diva at the Met: A spicy herbal tea mixed with Barry Callebaut cocoa and Valrhona chocolate then topped with crushed rose hips.
    Served with a raspberry tea cake.
  • Po-tay-to Po-tah-to at Soriette Macarons & Tea: Sage, cinnamon and purple potato hot chocolate in Michel Cluizel mokaya. Served with a toasted yam marshmallow.

Follow me on Twitter @RemyScalza

Tagged: , , ,

Comments are closed for this post

One Response to Attention Chocoholics: 2015 Vancouver Hot Chocolate Festival Starts Jan 17

  1. Pingback: How to Get a Good Night’s Sleep! | Future.Life.Happiness