Hot Chocolate Festival: Secret Location

Sitji and I got to try all three hot chocolates, by minor mishap. Originally I ordered the “Blond Mystique” and he ordered “Aphrodite”. It was quite impressive  – they pour through a piece of weaved chocolate ontop of the cup for the Aphrodite. From what I tasted from his Aphrodite and also from his feedback, the hot chocolate had a lower viscosity than the previous chocolate we had at Terra Breads. Perhaps there was less foam as it was closer to water. Though that does not sound flattering, the cocoa picks it up with its woven texture in the drink. The parsnip gave it a full body, that gave this hot chocolate a savoury quality. The English breakfast gelato served with the Aphrodite too had a bit of a saltier undertone. I forgot to ask Sitji if he felt funky later, but maybe I don’t want to know!

So, the Blond Mystique was too sweet for me. Within it was roasted white chocolate, candy cap, and cognac hot chocolate. The few sips I had were extremely delicious though. I used to have something similiar in the winter at Thierry, called the Winter Rose. If you are a fan of that, you will be a fan of this. Only that because it is white chocolate, it is going to be sweeter than the Winter Rose. Perhaps the drink is meant to be sweet to mask the cognac, but the full shot is still unveiled to me. Despite the strength of the liquor and the sweetness, this drink will be delicious to those who especially love liquor-filled bon bons.

I guess Sitji and I were there for a while and I hadn’t touched my drink. We were talking about our nights last night, Facebook and its political and emotional sociology and new films on the horizon. I kept nibbling on the brown butter Caramelia financier served with the Blond Mystique. It is a small, light, fluffy cake that I think was meant to clean the palate from the sweet sugary Blond Mystique.

Our waiter came over and asked me if something was wrong. I explained that the Blond Mystique was a little too sweet for me, but that it was alright because I should have guessed it from the mix listed in the menu. However, they were nice enough to let me get another hot chocolate instead. I tried the third option: the Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.

Smoked cinnamon mocha? Chocolate marshmallows? Caramel powder? I should have gotten this to begin with. Cinnamon mocha is nice because the cinnamon gives this tiny bite of extra sweetness, but the mocha keeps the sweetness and bitterness of chocolate balanced. The caramel helped the cinnamon pick up the darker chocolate as well and I remember drinking this a lot faster than my other hot chocolate! It was smooth, spicy and bold. The chocolate marshmallows were soft, not-sticky and not chewy! Sitji and I tried to identify what these marshmallows were comprised of. The surface area was smooth, so I thought it was a truffle but it did not melt, nor stick in your mouth. At one point, Sitji wondered if there was agar in it, but we are not one hundred percent sure. Perhaps the marshmallows should be left deliciously mysterious.

I wasn’t able to snap a picture for the lock, stock and two smoking barrels as we were in a hurry to go. But Secret Location was quite cordial, polite and well-mannered in their service, and the hot chocolates were definitely memorable.

4.5/5
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Nathalie

About Nathalie

Nathalie is a producer, photographer, videographer and writer based in Vancouver. Between travelling to Toronto and LA for film festivals, she enjoys cooking and dining around Vancouver's vibrant restaurant scene. She enjoys delicious, affordable eats in and around the city.
  • Secret Location

    Hi Nathalie. Thanks for your vivid review and those beautiful photos! We had fun with the Hot Chocolate Festival and have kept Aphrodite on our menu moving forward. It was favourite. Hope to see you again soon!

    - Secret Location

    • http://www.facebook.com/natadecoca Nathalie De Los Santos

      Yes! The Aphrodite was delicious. I’ll come back in the future to have some more! :)