The days of mixing an overly sweet, processed hot chocolate powder into boiling milk are long gone when it comes to wanting a cup of hot chocolate. And now there is a strong uprising in the number of companies making real chocolate available for us all to make at home.
Sir Hans Sloane was a chocolate pioneer. In the late 17th century, after tasting drinking chocolate in Jamaica he came up with the idea of combining it with milk to make it more palatable. He brought his recipe back to England, initially as a medicine, but it soon became the way people consumed hot chocolate in Europe.
Four centuries later, the name Hans Sloane continues to be synonymous with innovation. Hans Sloane Drinking Chocolate is the only hot chocolate product to be made from pure chocolate beads. Their company mission is to bring the taste of chocolate back to drinking chocolate and their beads melt perfectly in hot milk or water to create a richer chocolate drink.
Available in 270g packs, Hans Sloane Drinking Chocolate comes in five varieties, including the Great Taste Award-winning Smooth Milk, Rich Dark, Madagascar 67% and Ecuador 70%, as well as their unique Natural Honey.
This autumn sees the launch of the perfect stocking filler for Christmas - Hans Sloane's handmade single-serve Christmas Bauble and Cocoa Pod, each filled with chocolate beads. Simply shake to hear the chocolate beads inside before popping the bauble/pod into a cup and adding hot milk or water.
Hans Sloane. Chocolate Made For Drinking!
We were delighted when we received a package containing two Pods and a box of Smooth Milk, Rich Dark, Ecuador 70% and Natural Honey beads. In all honesty, what else would we feel but delight with so many chocolate options to taste test?
And test we did! We tried all four varieties with hot milk, rice milk and water, so we could be sure of the tastes regardless of what was in the mix.
We have to admit we are not keen on the full bodied flavour of the Natural Honey but out all the mixes, with milk it came out tops on colour and consistency. Not too thick, light and creamy and the perfect shade we would expect from a milky hot chocolate. With a smooth consistency and strong honey flavour, if you are a fan of the nectar you will love this option.
Second to reach an impressive consistency and colour was the Rich Dark beads. When added to milk they made a thick, dark chocolate mix. Even with water alone the mix, although a little thinner, was a strong dark colour and well blended. For dark chocolate lovers this will hit the right spot because it is not overly sweet in any way - just full on rich the way hot chocolate should taste.
Smooth Milk worked wonders with hot, full fat milk, although the colour and consistency were not quite what we expected. It struggled to mix well with rice milk and water but retained its milky smooth flavour. This really did taste like a bar of milk chocolate, melted into a cup. For us 'dark' lovers a little too much on the sweet side but ideally suited to those already partial to creamy milk chocolate.
The least favourite all-round seemed to be the Ecuador - "a rich dark chocolate with hints of licorice and banana". It didn't quite get deep enough to match the dark, resisted the mixing and sat middle ground on overall taste.
The use of chocolate beads ensures that melting is made easy, if you can resist the urge to eat them before you make your drinks. And we absolutely loved the chocolate pods, again resisting the urge to break them open and eat them like a novelty egg. Perfect for gift ideas and ideal to pop into a single serve cup, they make a cute addition to the range.
If you are looking for a hot chocolate to make at home then Hans Sloane brings the taste of real chocolate into your mug.
For more information visit www.sirhanssloane.com