The thing that happens when you write a blog about hot chocolate, unsurprisingly, is that hot chocolate becomes the present of choice. Birthdays, Christmas, thank you gifts often involve something hot chocolate themed…and generally don’t disappoint! Case in point; a gift card to the Ministry of Coffee from my brother and his wife for Christmas. Now, as you have heard me say many many times before, coffee shops and hot chocolate are often not the best of friends. Where one goes, the other very rarely follows. This creates a lot of friction in my marriage since my husband is a lover of very good coffee, and we rarely find places where we can both enjoy a good version of our respective drinks of choice.
Ministry of Coffee has now been added to this very short list of places that have both a good coffee (Rich said the espresso was excellent), and a good hot chocolate. The thing to have is the Nutella hot chocolate which I would generally not go for. Yes I will admit there was a time where I would eat Nutella by the spoonful, finishing off whole containers within days. But then, one day, Nutella was just too sweet. So the thought of adding Nutella to an already overly sweetened hot chocolate, no thank you. But not Ministry of Coffee. The Nutella hot chocolate here tastes like a better version of Nutella, the Nutella that I could perhaps consider eating again one spoonful at a time, but I would rather drink it here, one mug at a time. It was hazelnutty and smooth, not too sweet, not too bitter…just right.
Add to that their selection of healthy looking but still very tempting muffins and toasted sandwiches (highly recommended), this is a Ministry that needs to spread across the city….and beyond. Ministry of Coffee has two locations but we visited the one on Elgin. If you are visiting Ottawa this is a short walk from the Parliament buildings and the Rideau Center and Byward Market. It is just around the corner from City Hall and, in the winter, a great stop if you have been skating on the Rideau Canal, the longest outdoor skating rink in the world (7 km). You’ll be needed a Nutella hot chocolate or two after that!
Verdict: Be sure to visit my brother’s amazing blog www.ottawaexplorer.ca to learn more about the beautiful city of Ottawa. Thanks for the gift card! The Ministry of Coffee, 279 Elgin Street, Ottawa, Canada.