If you’re looking for an honest, unbiased Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser review, you’re in the right place! Can you use other chocolate? Is it easy to clean? Is it really worth the hefty price tag? Find the answers to all your burning questions right here in this Velvetiser review.
Please note that all prices and information were correct at the time of publishing.
How can I be sure this is really an honest Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser review?
This review is not sponsored. I have not received a free product in exchange for a review and I am not being paid to write this post. I bought the machine with my own money and have concluded my own unbiased and honest opinion about it.
What does a Velvetiser do?
A Velvetiser, in essence, is a hot chocolate making machine. It heats up the milk and melts the chocolate at the same time as whisking it all together. We’re lead to believe that this creates a smooth, velvety, barista grade hot chocolate drink… but is the hype really true?
Is a milk frother the same as a Velvetiser?
It’s only natural to look for cheaper alternatives when contemplating a big purchase. However, in this case, the answer is no. A milk frother (whether it’s a wand or an automatic machine) is only designed to froth and sometimes heat up milk. It’s not designed for making hot chocolate in.
What does the Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser come with?
In the Velvetiser box, you will currently find the Velvetiser machine itself, plus 2 of their white pod cups. (It’s worth noting that, when your hot chocolate is made to their instructions, it fits perfectly into those cups.)
I personally felt a little bit cheated that it didn’t come with any chocolate to try, you have to purchase this separately. Although, they do currently soften the blow a little, in offering certain products at a discount rate when bought together with a Velvetiser.
How many cups does a Velvetiser make?
The Velvetiser makes 1 cup of hot chocolate at a time. This may seem a little annoying to some, however, I personally didn’t think it mattered all that much. When I switched the machine on, everyone wanted to try different flavours, so it actually helped to minimise waste and electricity.
How long does it take to make a hot chocolate in the Velvetiser?
It only takes about 2 and a half minutes to make a hot chocolate in the Velvetiser. Considering a good homemade hot chocolate would take you at least 10 minutes to make, I don’t think that’s very long to wait for the perfect hot chocolate, do you?
In that time, you’ll also notice that the machine is satisfyingly quiet. You only really hear a faint noise of the chocolate clinking against the sides of the machine, which dissipates as the chocolate slowly melts anyway.
Is the Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser easy to clean?
This was something that I was keen to learn myself. I was pleasantly surprised that, yes, the Velvetiser IS very easy to clean!
All you need to do is fill it with cold water to the max line, add a couple of drops of washing up liquid and switch it on as if you were making a hot chocolate. Once the cycle is finished, simply rinse out the soap suds with cold water and dry. Easy peasy!
Testing the Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser
In order to write you a thorough review, there were a number of things I felt needed testing out. Here’s what I learned…
Can you put any hot chocolate in the Velvetiser?
Officially, Hotel Chocolat say no to this question on their website. Claiming that their hot chocolate flakes have been manufactured to the ideal size and weight for creating perfect hot chocolate in their Velvetiser machine.
However, I found the answer to be very different… I chopped several different bars of chocolate as finely as I could and tried them all in the Velvetiser with milk. They worked absolutely fine, without any negative effects on the machine whatsoever. I even managed to create a stunning Christmas hot chocolate too!
You really do need to make sure you chop that chocolate as finely as you possibly can though. Otherwise it may not fully melt and could have consequences on your machine long term.
I also discovered that you can use hot chocolate drinking powders instead of real chocolate. You can use different liquids too – cows milk, plant based milk and even water. They still taste great!
How to use other chocolate in the Velvetiser
The basic formula is: 35g (or 6 heaped teaspoons) of very finely chopped chocolate + 220ml of milk (or water)
Here’s a list of the chocolates I tested using the above formula (with semi skimmed milk), and their results…
- Galaxy – This was awful! It tasted cheap and was WAY too sweet and milky. The chocolate flavour didn’t come through at all. Rating: 1/5
- Cadbury’s Dark Milk – If you love Dairy Milk then you’ll love Dark Milk teamed up with semi skimmed milk! Pretty much tastes just like Dairy Milk but with a little added richness. Rating: 5/5
- Terry’s Chocolate Orange – This was a little on the sweet side but tasted very much of Terry’s Chocolate Orange! It was also incredibly smooth and creamy. I’d be interested to try this with the dark chocolate version. Rating: 4/5
- Green and Blacks 37% Milk – This was delicious. You really get the Green and Blacks flavour coming through! It wasn’t too sweet and the texture was smooth and creamy. Rating: 5/5
- Lindt Extra Creamy Milk Chocolate – This was smooth and creamy but really quite sweet. You do get the Lindt flavour coming through but it’s very subtle. Rating: 2/5
- Asda Extra Special Orange Dark Chocolate (52%) – This was beautiful! A lovely in-between from Hotel Chocolat’s rich 65% chocolate orange and the overly sweet Terry’s Chocolate Orange. Not too sweet, not too rich – a perfect balance. Rating: 5/5
- Tony’s Chocolonely – The flavour of the chocolate really comes through with this one. It’s quite rich yet very milky. A lovely hot chocolate! Rating: 4/5
- Galaxy Fusions Dark Chocolate with 70% Cocoa – This one is very rich and bitter with a lovely smooth texture. Perfect for those who don’t like their hot chocolate too sweet! Rating: 4/5
- Creme Egg – Just don’t do it. I nearly broke my machine and it tasted like liquid sugar. Bad idea! Rating: 0/5
In summary, the best results came from the chocolates with a higher cocoa content. The Green and Blacks 37% milk was genuinely delicious whereas Galaxy was truly awful. (This wasn’t all that surprising to me as it’s the same for homemade hot chocolate sticks.)
I would recommend using the Hotel Chocolat hot chocolate flakes first, just so you get an idea of how finely the chocolate needs to be chopped. A must before venturing on your own hot chocolate flavour quest!
Does Velvetiser hot chocolate taste better than traditional methods?
This was something I was super curious about! To test this, I tried the following comparisons:
- Galaxy hot chocolate powder with water. Kettle method vs Velvetiser.
- Lindt hot chocolate powder with milk. Microwave method vs Velvetiser.
- 59% dark chocolate with milk. Saucepan method vs Velvetiser.
In every experiment, the Velvetiser came out on top. By a country mile! I was expecting the texture to be better but, the really surprising thing, was that it actually improved the flavour!
For example, the Galaxy hot chocolate kettle method made a less flavourful and more watery drink. The same drink made in the Velvetiser, was much smoother and thicker but also had a more rich and well rounded flavour.
The Lindt hot chocolate made with microwave heated milk, was almost chalky and had a slightly bitter taste. The Velvetiser version had a beautifully well balanced flavour and was much smoother.
Lastly, the 59% dark chocolate with milk using the saucepan method, took quite a long time to melt gently and immediately began to form an unsightly skin on top once made. The Velvetiser version harboured a smooth and mellow flavour which was thicker, more frothy and, overall, tasted more premium.
You’ve read all about my experiments and testing, now it’s time to reach a verdict! Have you made up your mind yet?
How much does the Hotel Chocolate Velvetiser cost?
Currently, the Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser costs £99.95 to buy outright or you can get £50 off when you buy their Velvetiser and Refill subscription (which is then either £13 a month for 12 months or £26 a month for 6 months). Every now and then they release discount codes and have sales, so it’s worth keeping an eye out for those.
Are Velvetisers worth it?
In terms of getting the best possible hot chocolate in your very own home, I would say yes. It’s worth it. After reading ample mixed reviews of cheaper alternatives, it would seem that the Hotel Chocolate Velvetiser is the original and the best.
The product itself delivers in every aspect. Flavour and texture wise, it wipes the floor with traditional methods. It’s easy to clean, you can get premium flavours from Hotel Chocolat and even make your own (see How to use other chocolate in the Velvetiser above). I’m not sure you could ask for more from a hot chocolate making machine!
Should I buy a Velvetiser?
If you’re a big fan of hot chocolate and make it all the time at home, I would say yes, absolutely buy yourself a Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser! It makes stunning hot chocolate in a mere two and a half minutes, that’s guaranteed to delight your taste buds.
It is a hefty price tag I admit, but if you’re going to use it all the time and it brings you joy on a regular basis, I say why the hell not?!
However, if hot chocolate is only a once in a while treat for you – I probably wouldn’t bother. It’s just going to be yet another piece of kitchen equipment that clutters up your kitchen side or cupboards. Stick to an occasional Costa trip instead and save yourself the pennies.
Where can I buy a Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser?
Here’s where you can get your very own Velvetiser machine. At the time of writing this article, it was possible to sign up to their vip.me service and receive a 15% off discount code plus other benefits. Hopefully this should soften the blow of the hefty price tag a little!