Every December, for as far back as we can remember, Mimi reserves tickets for all of us girls and kids to go see The Nutcracker ballet live in town. It’s a holiday tradition we always look forward to where we get to forget all about our worries and stresses and enjoy each other’s company. While we have a deep love for this classic holiday production, one of our favorite aspects of the night is heading to the concession during intermission and sharing a cup of hot chocolate while we pick out a Nutcracker ornament to add to our collection. And since things are going to be different this year and we don’t want to forgo making these special memories, we partnered with Cotier Brand to create a Gourmet Hot Chocolate Bar we can enjoy while connecting with our families and watching The Nutcracker movie from home.
This post is sponsored by Cotier Brand, but the content and opinions expressed here are our own.
If you’re looking for a fun way to spend time with your family this holiday season, we know this Gourmet Hot Chocolate Bar will provide memories for years to come. The best part is that it won’t just help you get into the spirit this year, it will also help spark conversations and deepen meaningful relationships with much thanks to Cotier Brand’s Convokins (see Step 3 below). Furthermore, everything you need is easily accessible and simple to assemble. Below we are sharing 5 easy steps on how to host a Gourmet Hot Chocolate Bar your family will love! And don’t be surprised if they’ll want to make this part of your annual holiday traditions.
How to Host a Gourmet Hot Chocolate Bar Your Family Will Love
1. Pick Your Setting
Whether you decide to set your hot chocolate bar indoors or out, in the living or dining room, or anywhere in between, your family will love the end result just the same. However, we do recommend being mindful of a few details that may make a world of a difference when picking your setting.
For instance, we recommend setting your hot chocolate bar on flooring that can be easily wiped should any hot chocolate spill during the preparation process. We also recommend keeping it near where you will be spending time together so refills and extra toppings are easily accessible. Also, consider placing your hot chocolate bar near a decorated tree or mantle or under a holiday wreath for some added cheer.
2. Choose a Foundation
The best way to set up your hot chocolate bar is to think of it as a small vignette which is a grouping of several objects to create a pleasing focal point. Utilize a small cabinet, console table, sideboard, or dresser as your base to build your bar on top. Do not be afraid to move furniture around in order to create a thoughtful display. We’ve been known to bring dressers in from other rooms in order to create something unique. Your family will love the opportunity to enjoy familiar spaces showcased in new ways where they can share meaningful moments.
3. Incorporate Conversations Starters
Spark spirited discussions, warm interactions, and deeper connections with your family by incorporating Cotier Brand’s Convokins, a collection of thought-provoking conversation starters printed on high-quality napkins. Simply set them on the bar for easy access and give everyone an opportunity to share the icebreaker on their napkin. Then, be prepared to share some good laughs and “I didn’t know that!” kind of moments!
4. Select Your Hot Chocolate Mix and Gourmet Toppings
You can never go wrong with a classic, rich milk chocolate hot cocoa mix. The smooth and delicious flavors will only be enhanced by the toppings each family member chooses to add to their cup. If you want to kick things up a notch, don’t be afraid to incorporate various hot cocoa flavors to add a variety of different flavor profiles.
As far as toppings go, the sky is your limit here! This year we chose:
- Butterscotch morsels
- Coconut covered marshmallows
- Cookie frosting filled candy canes
- Crushed peppermint
- Holiday mini sugar cookies
- Milk chocolate chips
- Milk chocolate English toffee bits
- Toffee crunch chocolate dipped pretzel rods
Some additional options include:
- Caramel bits
- Caramel sauce
- Chocolate syrup
- Finely chopped nuts
- Flavored marshmallows
- Holiday cookies
- Mini marshmallows
- Peanut butter chocolate chips
- Whipped cream
- White chocolate chips
5. Display Hot Chocolate Essentials in Decorative Serveware
Add visual interest to your Gourmet Hot Chocolate Bar by displaying all of your hot cocoa essentials in decorative serveware. Fill ceramic ramekins with gourmet toppings and layer them on a tiered serving tray to add height and dimension to your display. Fill glass jars with hot cocoa mix, stir sticks, candy canes, and/or chocolate pretzel rods. Don’t forget to include a kettle filled with hot water, scoops for toppings, and mugs for mixing and serving it all up! Remember, leading with a spirit of purpose and intentionality will serve you well here just like you would when decorating a lovely holiday tablescape.
How to Get the Conversation Started and Why It Matters
This year it feels more important than ever to connect with our families and the best way we know how is through the conversations we carry. We often assume we know everything about the people we love only to be surprised to learn something new about them when we ask thought-provoking questions. Oftentimes, those questions don’t come easily to mind which is why we love Convokins and recommend making them a part of your Gourmet Hot Chocolate Bar. We can serve all the hot chocolate and gourmet toppings in the world, but at the end of the day, it’s the connections we foster that are vital to building strong relationships with those who matter most. This holiday we encourage you to spark spirited conversations and warm interactions with these innovative napkins that you can grab online at Target or Amazon.
How to Ensure Your Hot Chocolate Bar is Family-Friendly
If you are serving little ones this season and want to ensure your Gourmet Hot Chocolate Bar is family-friendly, here are a few of our best recommendations:
- Use disposable coffee cups with cozies to prevent breakage and to protect little hands.
- Place a stool near the bar so little ones can reach all of the hot chocolate essentials with ease.
- Instead of metal spoons, try wood ones.
- Pre-pour the hot chocolate into the mugs or disposable cups and allow little ones to choose their toppings.
- Use a single-serve coffee maker to dispense hot water instead of using a kettle. Just be sure to allow the water to cool down a bit before serving as it tends to be VERY HOT!!
So tell us, are you planning a Gourmet Hot Chocolate bar this year with your family? If so, please share what you have planned in the comments below! We can’t wait to hear all about it!!
Hap-Bee Hosting, Busy Bee!