Cocoa as a crop was so precious in ancient cultures that it was used as a currency for trade. And its value remains as a currency for saying something special; for celebration, for indulgence or for the simple appreciation of its flavour and origins. A chocolate hamper is a modern way of sharing something truly special as a gift.
BBC Good Food’s patisserie expert Liberty Mendez and senior food editor Cassie Best put a selection of the very best luxury chocolate hampers to the test from a broad selection of brands to bring you our definitive guide.
Those tested sit at the luxury end of the price spectrum for chocolate hampers, but for something a bit different, our guide to the best gifts for chocolate lovers includes everything from the unusual to the delicious for some different inspiration. We’ve also selected our picks of the best Valentines Day chocolate gifts to give your loved ones this year.
For even more gifts for foodies, we’ve also rounded up the best prosecco gifts, brilliant baking gifts, as well as our ideas for cheese gifts that are sure to be a hit. Discover over 400 buyer’s guides in our reviews section on everything from the best stand mixers to drinks, tested and rated by BBC Good Food experts.
The best chocolate hampers to buy in 2021
Willie’s Cacao The Gateway hamper, £44.99
This hamper is perfect for someone who is interested in the origins of chocolate and keen to train their taste buds to new and exciting varieties of chocolate. It includes different chocolates from single estate cacaos from around the world. It would be perfect to do as a chocolate tasting at home. It’s a real showstopper and stand out present, with the big beautiful box and minimal plastic packaging and contents that’s seemingly never-ending.
Inside you’ll find a selection of deliciously creamy praline truffles, hot chocolate powder, hazelnut chocolate spread and a variety of chocolate bars. The real stand out was the unbelievably smooth and rich dark hot chocolate, made with cacao from Colombia. It’s brilliant value for money, as the quality of each of the chocolates is unrivalled and you get to learn about the variation of chocolates and flavour profiles available from cacao around the world.
Available from Willie’s Cacao (£44.99)
Fortnum and Mason A Chocolate Adventure Hamper, £60
Anything which arrives in one of Fortnum & Mason’s iconic wicker baskets is bound to impress, and this didn’t disappoint. Within the miniature picnic hamper you’ll find three flavoured chocolate bars; Dark Chocolate Filled with Mitcham Mint, Milk Chocolate and Salted Almond and Dark Chocolate Filled with Rose and Violet Ganache.
What’s more, the hamper includes two selection boxes; Chocolate Pralines & Ganache Selection Box and Chocolate Caramels Selection Box, each containing six ingeniously flavoured chocolates, the Milk Chocolate Muscovado Sugar Salted caramel was a particular favourite. This top of the range selection box is the perfect gift for a special friend, or a lovely treat for yourself.
Available from Fortnum & Mason (£60)
Monty Bojangles Truffle Trunk, £40
There’s something magical about this truffle trunk. It takes the magic of wanderlust in a suitcase but filled with boxes of your favourite chocolate flavours, in truffle form. What makes this so perfect is that, when ordering direct from Monty Bojangles, you can actually pick which flavours to have in the suitcase, any it’s only £40 for nine boxes and over 100 truffles, which is great value.
Despite the heavy cocoa coating (make sure you have a wet wipe on hand), the flavours are delicious. We highly recommend the ‘pistachio macaooned’ ones as they have a delicious nutty flavour and crunchy texture amongst the silky truffle. The names of each flavour are quirky, the packaging is colourful and you can even use the trunk for storage when you’ve finished the truffles.
Charbonnel et Walker The Ultimate Celebration Hamper £285
At the top end of the chocolate hampers we’ve tested, Charbonnel et Walker’s decadent Celebration Hamper is a chocoholic’s dream. Filled to bursting with two large selection boxes, four different truffle selection boxes (their illustrious pink Marc du Champagne truffles were a favourite) dark chocolate mint thins, two miniature heart selection boxes, drinking chocolate, sea salt almonds, two chocolate bars and a bottle of Moet Champagne.
Charbonnel et Walker are world renowned as one of Britain’s best chocolatiers, untying the inky blue ribbon on one of their selection boxes feels like a very special moment. This really is the Lamborghini of the chocolate hampers we’ve tested, but with its hefty price tag it’s unlikely to be something you’ll treat yourself to. It would make a wonderful competition prize or a very special wedding gift.
Available from Charbonnel (£285)
The London Chocolate Co. Wonderful vegan chocolate hamper, £50
It can be tricky to find a well-made, beautifully designed vegan chocolate hamper – but The London Chocolate Co. have done a stellar job. The truffle designs are stunning and with classic flavours such as orange, coconut, salted caramel and raspberry – you can’t go wrong!
This hamper feels luxurious and sophisticated, a perfect gift, you also get a chocolate bar with a perfect blend of rich dark chocolate and sea salt and a luxurious dark hot chocolate. It’s on the pricey side at £50, as you only get three products, but for how lavish it is and how great quality the chocolate is, it’s worth the money.
Available from The London Chocolate Co (£50)
Coco Chocolate Isolation Kit, £45
The aim for this kit was to isolate in style and Coco has achieved that. Their packaging is beautiful, colourful and modern with bright bold colours – making it an eye-catching gift, or a treat for yourself. For the amount of chocolate you receive, it’s quite expensive, but if you’re after a stylish gift for a chocolate lover, this is perfect.
In the hamper you’ll find four 80g bars, packets of dark chocolate raisins, and caramel hazelnuts and a deliciously smooth salted caramel hot chocolate. The flavours are unusual but not outrageous with a combination of classics like hazelnut and caramel complimented by bolder ones like passionfruit and dark chocolate. In particular, the rhubarb and ginger chocolate bar with milk chocolate was delicious. The silky-smooth sweet chocolate balanced out the heat the comes from the ginger and floral notes from the rhubarb perfectly.
Available from Coco (£45)
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This review was last updated in February 2021. If you have any questions, suggestions for future reviews or spot anything that has changed in price or availability, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.