Frequently Asked Questions
When I unwrapped my bar, there were some areas that seemed discolored. Does this mean it has gone bad?
Not at all. It is common for chocolate exposed to warmer temperatures to "bloom". This is the cocoa butter coming to the surface, and in the case of our bar, it is bringing cocoa powder along with it; hence the light brown coloration. Blooming will have no impact on the quality of the drinking chocolate.
Can I make just one serving of the drinking chocolate?
Our recommendation is to make the whole bar, and re-heat what you do not use. Once made, it will keep for days in the fridge, and re-heats easily on the stovetop, or in the microwave.
Do I have to use whole milk, or can the chocolate be added to milk substitutes, or water?
Our preference is to use whole milk, and it works well with 2%, skim, and non-fat milk. Soy and rice milk also work, although we think the flavor using rice milk is not quite as good. We do not recommend using just water, as it tastes quite sweet.
Will it work to make the drinking chocolate in the microwave?
We have found that making it on the stovetop works better, and is actually easier. Make the whole bar, and save what you do not drink for later. It keeps for days in the fridge, and can be reheated in the microwave.
I made drinking chocolate just like the directions said and there is milk skin on top of my hot drinking chocolate. Is this normal?
We've found that if you make sure to only heat the milk enough to melt the chocolate, and then once it is completely melted bring it to a quick boil stirring constantly, the milk skin doesn't happen. Remember to remove the pan from the stove as soon as it comes to a boil. The milk skin is a result of the milk getting too hot before all the chocolate melts. Continual stirring makes a big difference.
Where does your chocolate come from?
Click here to go to our drinking chocolate page.
Is your chocolate fair-traded and/or organic?
Click here to go to our drinking chocolate page.
Where are your drinking chocolate bars made?
We are proud to say that our bars are "Made in Oregon". Sipping Dreams co-founder Tom Zell developed the recipe, and the Candy Basket in Portland, OR manufactures them. They are a family-run company, and they make, cut and wrap the bars by hand. This explains why the bars are not all the exact same shape.
What is the calorie content of your drinking chocolate?
Good question! A 3-ounce serving of our drinking chocolate, prepared with whole milk, has only 130 calories and 8 grams of fat (12%). Compare that with the same size portion of Haagen-Dazs Chocolate Peanut Butter ice cream, which has 270 calories, and 18 grams of fat (37%) — more than twice the calories and fat. And if you make our drinking chocolate with 2% or non-fat milk, there are even few calories and grams of fat.
Do you have any suggestions of other ways for me to enjoy your drinking chocolate?
We sure do!
- Add some to your coffee
- Use it as a dip for strawberries
- Serve it on top of ice-cream
- Add a little cinnamon, vanilla; or even a pinch of cayenne pepper
- Mix it with a little Crème-de-menthe, peppermint schnapps, or dark rum to create an adult version of the drink!
We would love to add to our list, so please let us know your good ideas as you discover them.
Is Sipping Dreams drinking chocolate appropriate for kids?
We have served our drinking chocolate to kids ages 5 to 16, and in almost every case, they loved it. There have been a few who found it to be a bit too much. We recommend adding more milk to make the drink a little less rich.
What is the difference between Dutch cocoa and Natural process cocoa?
According to Paul Albright of Guittard Chocolate Co., Natural process cocoa is made from roasted beans, ground to chocolate liquor then pressed to remove cocoa butter to the desired amount of fat you want in the cocoa powder itself. This yields a more acidic cocoa, generally lighter in color and a more "chocolatey" flavor. Dutch process cocoa (so called because the process was invented in the Netherlands) is processed essentially the same way with one additional step. In that step the nibs of the bean or the liquor is brought into contact with a base (there are different ways of doing this but in the end the cocoas are "Dutched"). The usual base used in this process is potassium carbonate although other bases could be used. The net result is that the base neutralizes acids in the cocoa beans and moves the ph more toward the neutral ph of 7. From a flavor standpoint Dutched cocoa has a more mellow taste. The Dutching process also changes the color of the cocoa making it darker. The higher the degree of Dutching the darker the finished cocoa in general terms.
Do you have a mailing list?
We do, and we are exploring what our options are for staying in touch with people interested in our gourmet drinking chocolate. If you would like to be added to our list, call Clover at 541-232-3229, or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.