With Easter just around the corner, there’s only one thing on my mind – chocolate. While I won’t be traipsing around London tasting some of the world’s finest chocolate anytime soon, I hope to live vicariously through my fellow chocoholics who find the time to do so.
For the Easter holiday, the four-star Mandeville Hotel is pulling out all the stops. You’re welcomed with a chocolate gift, and the one-night stay for two includes a traditional English breakfast (sans chocolate), chocolate tea in the afternoon, and a chocolate martini in the Mandeville’s bar.
If you haven’t had enough chocolate by the time you check out, head over to Fortnum & Mason, a 300-year-old shop located a mile from the hotel. The store is famous for its Easter egg collection, especially the Ultimate Easter Egg. The outermost milk chocolate shell opens to reveal three more shells of different types of chocolate. And, at the center of this three-pound treat is a 100-percent dark chocolate egg.
For those of you who can’t make it to London for Easter, don’t worry.
The city offers some of the world’s best chocolate year round. If you’re not sure where to begin, sign up for a Chocolate Ecstasy Tour.
Your guide will take you off the beaten path to some of the city’s most sought-after chocolate shops. The Original tour is a four-hour-plus affair, but you can opt for the shorter Mayfair or Chelsea tours.
For a different spin on the traditional afternoon English tea, stop by the Baglioni Hotel for sweet treats – chocolate scones, truffles, and chocolate-dipped strawberries – accompanied by a cup of hot chocolate.
If you’re feeling especially creative, try one of the workshops at My Chocolate
and make your own chocolates to bring back home as a souvenir. Master chocolatiers are on hand to assist you as you cut, dip, and decorate sweets — truffles, fudge, and Italian pralines, perhaps — to eat later.
Photo from Anna Brones, via IT’s Flickr pool