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  • Azize Ozyurek-Baer


Close your eyes and imagine the most perfect cup of hot chocolate you could drink. Feel the warmth of the cup on your hands and smell the chocolate as you take a sip. For some, that may be a sweeter milk chocolate with whipped cream on top, for others, it may be a darker, flavoured drink. Knoops has all of these and more.

If you’re near the Waterstones in Richmond on a weekend and you see a long line in front of a shop across the road, on George Street, you’ve found Knoops: a newly opened chocolate drinks café from Rye, right on time as the weather gets colder and we start wanting a warming cup of hot chocolate. Don’t let the long queue put you off, for what is inside is worth it.

Inside, the menu is on the wall, with different categories for milkshakes, iced drinks and, of course, hot chocolate.

For each chocolate drink on the menu, there is a cocoa percentage and the flavoured drinks are temptingly described. The cocoa percentages are strongly varied, from white chocolate to very dark chocolate, even 100% cocoa. If the percentages tell you nothing and you’re unsure how much per cent your ideal chocolate is, there are posters on the walls telling you which percentages are what kind of chocolate.

You have your own choice of milk, including vegan alternatives like oat milk and coconut milk.

I chose the only ruby chocolate drink, a ruby hot chocolate. It came in a cup that was like a coffee cup, complete with coffee-cup lid if you are taking the drink to go. It had froth on top and in a rather pale pink shade. It was creamy and sweet, less like chocolate and more like white chocolate with a fruity undertone.

You leave Knoops warmer and happier than you were when you came in. A cup of Knoops hot chocolate is the perfect way to ease into winter.

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