It’s officially hot chocolate season. And when it comes to creamy, indulgent hot chocolates at home, there’s one product that’s been making a serious splash online.
Introducing the Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser, a multiuse milk frother that claims to make caféworthy drinks that will have you cancelling your plans so you can stay in and get cosy with a cup of cocoa. But is it worth investing in this hot chocolate pro?
We decided to put it to the test to see if it meets our Good Housekeeping Institute standards. Let’s take a closer look at the milky drink maker of the moment to find out if it’s really a kitchen musthave (and worth adding to your Christmas wishlist).
What’s so special about the Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser?
Well, if you’ve always wondered why your homemade hot chocolate never tastes quite as indulgent as your favourite cafébought version, it’s probably because you’re missing a milk frother or using hot chocolate with a lower cocoa percentage. The Velvetiser takes care of both, with the frother providing the perfect silky texture and the high quality sachets bringing the flavour.
The Velvetiser isn’t a onetrick pony either. Outside of comforting hot cocoa, it can also be used to make creamy coffees, luxury milkshakes and indulgent cocktails. You can find a whole host of dinner partyready recipes on the Hotel Chocolat website.
How do you use the Velvetiser?
It’s really as easy as 1, 2, 3. Or rather, milk, sprinkle, whisk.
Grab your favourite mug or one of the ceramic ‘Podcups’ that come with the machine and pick your sachet of choice. Pour 220ml of milk (or water or a milkalternative) into the machine, then sprinkle in the hot chocolate flakes and press the button to start.
And tadah! In just twoandahalf minutes, you’ll have a rich, luxurious hot chocolate ready to drink.
Can I put any hot chocolate in a Velvetiser?
Sincere apologies to Whittard’s and Cadbury’s Instant, but the only hot chocolate that’s compatible with the Velvetiser is Hotel Chocolat’s ownbrand sachets. You can buy them from the brand’s online shop, Amazon and John Lewis. Unfortunately, they don’t come cheap – 10 sachets will set you back a minimum of £13.50. Note that it can work out cheaper to buy them in bulk.
It’s an expense you’ll need to factor in as other brands of chocolate flakes can clog the Velvetiser’s whisk and may even break the motor – so it’s a definite nono!
But the good news is that there are a whole host of exciting Hotel Chocolat flavours to choose from. As well as your quintessential 100% cocoa options, there’s hazelnut praline, black forest gateau and vanilla white chocolate. There’s even a Velvetiser advent calendar for true aficionados this Christmas, and there are vegan options too.
For ultimate convenience – and free delivery – you can opt for Hotel Chocolat’s Velvetiser subscription, starting at £14.50.
Can it be used for coffee?
Caffeine enthusiasts rejoice – yes it can. Simply add two shots of espresso to frothed milk or opt for one of Hotel Chocolat’s latte sachets. There’s caramel, hazelnut, and, of course, chocolate to choose from. We also like the look of this Velvetised Pumpkin Spice Chocolate Latte recipe for cosy autumn moments.
Can you use oat milk?
Yes! In fact, it’s compatible with all milk alternatives, including almond, soy and coconut. No milk in the fridge? Plot twist: the machine can also be used milkfree. Just use 220ml of water with your hot chocolate sachet instead.
Can I put it in the dishwasher?
Unfortunately, it’s a no. In case you’re still tempted, the brand is unequivocal, saying you should “never put your Velvetiser in the dishwasher.” That also includes the removable whisk.
Rest assured, though, it does have a nonstick coating for fussfree scrubbing and it’s borderline selfcleaning.
Once you’ve finished making your hot chocolate of choice, Hotel Chocolat recommends filling the Velvetiser with warm water and two drops of washing up liquid. Use a soft brush to gently wipe away any excess hot chocolate, then pop the lid back on and press the power button. Patience please while the Velvetiser does its thing, then simply drain the liquid into the sink, rinse the inside of the jug and leave it to air dry.
How we test
We put the Velvetiser through its paces by making lots and lots of hot chocolate. We made it with plant milk, cow’s milk and water. We also tried the Hotel Chocolat latte sachets to check its coffee credentials. We took note of texture, flavour, temperature and design features such as how easy it is to setup and use. Finally, we checked to see if there were any chocolate shards left at the bottom of the jug and how easy it is to clean after use.
Our Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser review
Scoring a bestinclass 92/100 overall, here’s how the Velvetiser performed during testing.
It makes excellent hot drinks
Our expert was impressed with the quality of the Velvetiser’s hot chocolate, describing the finished product as “creamy and velvety in texture.” They were pleasantly surprised to find it offers indulgent, frothy results even when plain hot water is used with the sachets instead of milk. When it comes to coffee, they loved the smooth chocolatemeetslatte results.
It’s easy to use (and consistent!)
Our expert found the the machine an absolute doddle to use and it was nice and quiet. It also performed consistently, crafting creamy drinks time and time again. This makes it ideal for dinner parties or family treats. In fact, a round of the salted caramel hot chocolate would make the perfect finale for any cold weather gathering.
There’s a wide variety of options
From vegan sachets to its compatibility with plantbased milk, there really is something for everyone when it comes to flavour options.
Caramel lattes, milkshakes and frothy cocktails are all on the menu. To make cold drinks, simply pour them over ice once the Velvetiser has finished whisking.
It isn’t dishwashersafe
It would be ideal if the Velvetiser could be popped straight into the dishwasher, although the fact you can fill it with water and soap, turn it on and leave it to do the hard work for you definitely lessens the blow.
It’s quite expensive
At just under £100 (or £110 for an included pack of starter sachets), it isn’t markedly pricier than a Nespresso milk frother, but it’s still quite a lot of money if you’re only going to use it once or twice a year. If you’re more of a fickle hot chocolate fan, you may prefer to stick to your kettle or saucepan and hob.
Plus, as it’s only compatible with the Hot Chocolat sachets, you need to factor in that extra cost. Working out at over £1 per hot chocolate, the spend can add up – especially if you’re planning to use it regularly or as your primary coffee machine.
The verdict: is the Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser worth buying?
If it’s a quick answer you’re looking for then it’s a “yes” from us. Attractive and consistent, it delivers when it comes to fancy and foamy hot drinks. We found the chocolate shavings seamlessly melted in with the milk for rich, delicious results.
Although it’s pricey, our expert found it an adaptable piece of kit that can do so much more than hot chocolate (although it’s undoubtedly the headliner here). You can use it for impressive lattes, milkshakes and cold beverages, while the plantbased options mean no family members or guests are left out. It’s also delightfully easy to use and clean.
All in all, this is a hot drink delight that’s perfect for serious hot chocolate fans or anyone looking to add a touch of cosy finesse to a winter dinner party. In the market for a Christmas present for a loved one? The Velvetiser would be at the very top of our list for sweet tooths. Anyone for a hot cocoa?
The Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser is available to buy from Amazon, Hotel Chocolat and Very.
Heidi Lauth Beasley is one of former homes writers, specialising in product reviews for everything from smoothie makers and coffee machines to barbecues and bedding.
Originally from Dorset, Heidi’s simple pleasures include finding new and unique ways to rid her life of stray pet hairs and telling anyone who’ll listen that tea tree oil is a natural disinfectant.
Heidi has an MA in Creative Writing for Brunel University and was previously a restaurant critic for The Infatuation London. Her specialist subjects included natural wine bars, handmade pasta spots and restaurant accessibility. She has also written for The Sunday Times Style and OpenTable. She is currently working on her debut novel.
Heidi lives in Tottenham with an exceptionally sassy house rabbit called Gatsby. At the weekend, you’ll usually find her reading on her terrace or attempting to convert her friends to sparkling red wine.
Blossom is our Senior Homes Tester. Passionate about finding the best home products and appliances for our readers, she has tested everything from blenders to pizza ovens. Blossom enjoys delving into the intricacies of products and refining testing protocols for hundreds of items. Innovative items like robot vacuum cleaners and wine coolers are among her favourite tests to date, and her most notable accomplishment is toasting 360 slices of bread in a determined bid to find the best toaster. In her free time, Blossom openly admits to being a music geek and indulges her creative side through crocheting, baking, singing and writing.