The Chocolate Room in Jawalakhel, Lalitpur is Charlie and the Chocolate Factory come alive. With its ceilings modeled like chocolate dripping and blocks of chocolate and their enormous display of chocolates, it is a marvelous place to visit if you have dreamt of seeing a chocolate castle at least once in your life.
The Chocolate Room is a franchise based in India and Australia with over 300 outlets all over the world. The one in Nepal, that opened in June this year, is its 299th store. Saurav Basnet is the man behind The Chocolate Room in Nepal. A foodie through and through, Saurav sought to bring The Chocolate Room here in Nepal to promote the desert culture that is largely missing here in our country. “What The Chocolate Room does with chocolate is remarkable so I just had to bring this to Nepal,” he says.
Although The Chocolate Room follows a fixed menu just like the rest of its outlets, Saurav and his team have played around with the decor on their own. There’s a rustic-suburban vibe to the eatery, what with its brick walls and Nepali aluminum kettles painted in vibrant shades. The walls and the ceilings are imitations of chocolate sauce flowing and dripping. I almost reached out thinking it was real (which, of course and sadly, it wasn’t). There is also a huge display of bouquets and wine bottles filled with chocolates for gifting purposes.
There are two different menus, one with The Chocolate Room’s signature chocolate creations and the other with savory dishes that are a mix of Mexican, continental and Italian cuisine. Mexican hotpot pesto is a crowd favorite. The chocolate sundaes, chocoizza (chocolate pizza), chocolate waffles – all The Chocolate Room originals – have a unique spin to them.
Cuddle cups and warming cups are another notable mentions. The cuddle cup in fact happens to be the mascot of The Chocolate Room brand. The cup is made so as to fit between two hands. “We drink our tea in the same way. Holding it that way gives you warmth and makes the drink much better,” claims Saurav. Cuddle cups are often used with hot chocolate and other warmer drinks. The warming cup, on the other hand, uses a burning candle that is fitted inside the cup. The idea is to keep your drink warm for long periods of time while you’re busy working or spending a lazy day at the cafe.
Saurav says that people often come to the cafe after dinner for desserts. And it’s a great thing because if there was something Kathmandu residents were missing, it was a place that exclusively served desserts, chocolate at that too. The Chocolate Room more than fills this void and I really couldn’t be happier about it.
Kit Kat Shake
Price: Rs 465
You will forget all the Kit Kat shakes you have ever tried after drinking this one. I sure did. Thick, rich, and creamy, there isn’t just the occasional hint of Kit Kat in this one. Everything is Kit Kat. In hindsight, this drink is actually equal to a meal. Wholesome and delightful, a thousand yeses to this shake.
Price: Rs 495
A note of caution – this thing is huge. Stay clear of Chocolate Avalanche if you’re ordering alone. You need at least a couple of friends to help you through this. This dish comes in a boat shaped bowl and it’s overflowing with chocolate (thus the avalanche). There’s a sea of white chocolate mousse, cream and melted chocolate along with bits and chunks of chocolate brownie. There is more chocolate in this bowl than you could imagine.
Price: Rs 345
This was such a delightful break. Considering the sheer amount of sugar I was consuming (not that I’m complaining), the bitterness of this coffee was a pleasant change. The coffee is chilled and unmistakably bitter. I absolutely recommend this drink if you’re picking one of the large items from the Coffee and Desert menu. You’ll need it.
Mexican Hot Pot
Price: Rs 515
Five full stars to this and one extra for good measure. This one is under the savory menu of The Chocolate Room and is essentially rice with a Mexican curry, some salsa sauce and nachos. The sauce is an assortment of beans, chicken, baby corn and some vegetables. So it comes off as a sweet and sour dish. This dish is what you can call soul food because it warms you from right within. A fantastic take on rice and curry!