November 29th: Hotel Chocolat Christmas Range 2013

In the run up to Christmas we are going to be showcasing a wide range of all the great, good and new featuring in the Hotel Chocolat line up this year. We've been lucky enough to be sampling these since mid-September so the @ChocMission team have had something of an elongated Christmas :-) We hope you enjoy the reviews remember all ChocolateMission readers can get 10% off at Hotel Chocolat by using the discount code CMISSIONHCWIN10

Hotel Chocolat Milk Chocolate Ultimate Advent Calendar

To be 100% honest with you guys we haven't opened this yet :-) It's sat on Jim's desk at ChocolateMission HQ waiting for December 1st - not even we could bring ourselves to open it before the advent countdown begins. Suffice to say we have every confidence it's going to be great. It features 24 solid milk chocolate shapes of their 40% house recipe - we are fully expectant of it being it's usual sweet cocoa rich, cream laden self. As you would expect the presentation is fantastic - folding open like a large book with the numbered doors temptingly decorated with shiny silver fonts. We can't wait for December to begin!

Our rating for this is impending of course - what advent calendars have you guys got??

Hotel Chocolat Coffee Buche

Guess who laid claim to this when the samples came through ... yes Mr Chocolate-coffee lover himself Jim! For those who haven't come across Hotel Chocolat's 'Buches' before they are solid chocolate praline logs and they come in a wide variety of different flavours. Down the years we have lauded over their Fruit & Nut and Pistachio Buches though Jim has thrown it out there that this Coffee one is 'their best yet'. He said the rich, roasted coffee bean flavours shone through in the aftertaste of the wonderful 50% milk chocolate and woody hazelnut flavours. He added that the textural mouth feel was incredible - melting like butter and delivering the taste with an unmatched smoothness. Chocolate-coffee fans needn't hesitate to get involved - Jim recommended!

9.0 out of 10

Hotel Chocolat Milk Chocolate Caramelised Hazelnuts

Someone answer us this - why are nuts so popular at Christmas!??? Who knows!? What we do know here @ChocMission is that Hotel Chocolat always deliver the goods when it comes to their chocolate nut offerings. Here things were no different with this 250.0g collection of 'premium Italian hazelnuts'. Frankly to us it doesn't matter where the nuts come from - for a Christmas product we just want them to be nicely presented and taste great. Well luckily these ticked both boxes. The silver tin and inner nuts were both aesthetically pleasing and maintained all the qualities you would expect from a Hotel Chocolat product. Just as importantly the 40% milk chocolate and plump hazelnuts were equally as great with the thick, sweet creamy chocolate coatings as masterful match for the crunchy, fresh tasting woody nut centres. The entire tin lasted no longer than a day in the office shared amongst us all. Chocolate coated hazelnuts are going to be ten a penny in the supermarkets but are they going to be as high quality as these!? I think we all know the answer to that!

7.8 out of 10