Indulge in your sweet tooth with Victoria’s best chocolate as Yarra Valley Chocolaterie’s annual Hot Chocolate Festival takes the classic combination of chocolate and milk to hot new heights with 31 different flavours over 31 days in August.

From 1 to 31 August, the Chocolaterie’s very own Belgian and French chocolatiers have created a line up of hot concoctions to keep the winter blues at bay inspired by premium couverture chocolate, seasonal ingredients, items from their kitchen garden and enticing flavour combinations.

An exciting menu of eight different flavours will be introduced each week of August, with the return of crowd pleasers from past Festivals such as Nutella, Strawberry High Tea, The Slam Dunk and last year’s best-selling Chocolate Brownie while this year’s new showstopper flavours are set to get temperatures rising when chocolate and milk combinations get adventurous.

A crowd pleaser is The Wagon Wheel Look out for The Wagon Wheel with its dunk-ready marshmallow and jam chocolate-coated biscuit skewered with a straw for extra delicious slurping. French Kiss puts a layer of creamy white chocolate over a steaming hot chocolate, requiring an extra hot choc kiss to melt the top deck while kids will love the little mint frogs swimming in Frogs in a Pond and the freckled chocolate rim of Freckle Fun.

The Yarra Valley Chocolaterie’s Hot Chocolate Festival is free entry and offers free chocolate tastings. Hot chocolate connoisseurs can enroll in special Tasting Sessions that are so popular that bookings are essential. Visitors can sip and savour eight different hot chocolate flavours plus pick up a tip or two on the art of hot chocolate making during a 45 minute hosted tasting session.

For those that can take their minds off the Hot Chocolate creations, the Yarra Valley Chocolaterie is nestled amongst 40 acres of landscaped grounds, orchard and wetlands with picturesque Valley views and plenty of room for kids to play and explore. There’s free chocolate tastings, a showroom filled with over 250 different handcrafted chocolate products and house made ice creams plus giant viewing windows to watch European chocolatiers at work.

If hot chocolate isn’t your cup of tea, there are plenty of activities to keep every type of traveller satisfied. The Yarra Valley and Dandenong Ranges is known for its numerous U-Pick farms and offer the fun experience of picking and enjoying a ripe cherry or peach right off the tree. The more adventurous traveller can take a morning hot air balloon flight with Global Ballooning to view the Yarra Valley in a different light. From high up in the sky, spectacular views over the valley’s vineyards, farmland and surrounding mountains can be enjoyed as the balloon is ushered along by the gentle breeze. Former pro-golfer Greg Norman also recently redesigned and launched The Eastern Golf Club, a soon-to-be 27 hole course set against the backdrop of rolling vineyards.

The Yarra Valley and Dandenong Ranges is located only a 50 minute drive from Melbourne’s city centre, but its vast rows of grapevines, towering mountain ash forests and irresistible culinary delights makes it feel like a magical getaway.

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