Chocolates which knock your socks off- Hotel Chocolat review.

It had been a hectic day. Well, most days are when you have seven children but this one turned out to be particularly mad. So when my friend suggested a girly evening I knew it was a great time to bring out the luxury chocolates I had been sent by Hotel Chocolat.

You might have seen their beautiful, boutique-style chocolate shops but did you know Hotel Chocolat send chocolate by post? Yes, thankfully, for people who love divine chocolate you can buy their chocolate online and have it sent straight to your home or place of work!

I had been invited to peruse a selection of their chocolates online and after much drooling consideration I chose the Classic Christmas Selection. My box arrived well packaged in rigid cardboard with a gift card inside. I can't remember the last time I was quite so excited to open a parcel!

I hid the box away for a while, wondering when it was best to open it. Having a totally selfish moment I didn't particularly want to share my posh chocolate with the children or even my Dear Husband who, frankly, would eat dog chocolate.

We have been invited to dinner with friends at the weekend - I debated taking it along there but panicked- what if my hostess smiled, took the box and stashed the chocolates away for eating herself later? What if she did open them after dinner but I was too full to truly appreciate them? What if I got to sample one or maybe two and then the box was taken away? No, selfishly, I wanted the option of enjoying the chocolate slowly, browsing the menu and picking out my favourite chocolates one by one.
Which brings me to the girly night.

The scene was set. My friend had the fire blazing. The Christmas tree lights lit up the room enough to be able to see the chocolate box menu. We had some Christmassy TV to tune in and out of in between gossiping  chatting and cackling. We had alcohol and access to copious amounts of tea should we require it for palate cleansing purposes in between chocolates.

We opened the box with reverence. These are not just chocolates you understand, they are Hotel Chocolat chocolates. There were Oohs and Ahhs as the beautifully crafted treats were unveiled. The guide was studied carefully as we made our first selection.

Christmas Mess - Fabulously Fruity cranberry ganache and strawberry mousse with meringue sprinkles.  A gorgeous little white chocolate cup with a dainty pink middle peeking and tiny white meringue pieces topping the whole thing. Now. To bite or pop in whole? I went for the latter and enjoyed the explosion of flavour with all the elements combined in one glorious mouthful!

The good news is that this was possibly the best chocolate I had ever eaten. The bad news is I think I now know what my friends sound like during their most intimate moments with their husbands!

And like the best romance films I think we should pan away from the scene as we ate another, and another and another of these fine chocolates. I particularly enjoyed Caramel Supernova - a star of oozingly soft (but not too sickly) caramel paired with 70% dark chocolate. And the Chambord Royale - a real Champagne truffle blended with black raspberry liqueur enrobed in white chocolate. Mmmmmmm!

The menu has clear pictures of each chocolate with a fulsome description plus information as to which chocolates contain gluten and/or egg. And I loved the guide as to how boozy each chocolate might be starting with no alcohol in recipe up to "Could blow your socks off" which is an apt description of the whole selection actually.

The fantastic news is if you are reading this before 6pm on Monday December 23 it's not too late to order some of these chocolates online for guaranteed delivery before Christmas. And even if you have missed this deadline I heartily recommend you keep the firm in mind for future presents for people you really like or who you want to really like you! Or just for yourself as a relaxing reward at the end of a hectic day.

Disclaimer: I was sent a box of Hotel Choclat chocolates for the purposes of this review. Views and opinions remain my own.

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