There are some redeeming factors to the colder months, like cosy nights curled up on the sofa, snuggled up in an oversized blanket, watching a festive film and drinking a warming cup of hot chocolate.
If you're thinking of upping your hot cocoa game this year, there is one gadget you need to know about. Hotel Chocolat's Velvetiser has racked up thousands of five-star reviews, with customers saying it takes the warming drink 'to another level'.
The one downside? It's fairly pricey, usually retailing for £99.95. However, we've spotted a great value QVC bundle that not only includes the popular hot chocolate maker, but also comes complete with 12 sachets of hot chocolate and two expertly designed mugs — all for the same price as the usual device.
If you or someone you know has been itching to get their hands on this popular hot chocolate maker, then now's the perfect time to snap it up in time for winter.
Why we rate it
First off, it makes deliciously creamy hot chocolate at the touch of a button. Equally as good as shop-bought hot choc, it uses grated flakes of chocolate that seamlessly blend into your drink to create the perfect consistency of hot chocolate, providing what Hotel Chocolat describes as the "ultimate barista experience in the comfort of your own home".
It also couldn't be easier to use — all you have to do is plug it in, add your chocolate flakes and a dash of your chosen milk, then wait while the flakes are melted before being whisked and folded into the milk, perfectly velvetising your drink.
As for the actual hot chocolate, there are numerous flavours to choose from. Included in this bundle, you'll get to try everything from Blood Orange to Black Forest, White & Vanilla to Salted Caramel. Plus, the Classic and Milky variations, too.
The Velvetiser is fitted with a removable whisk and the interior has a non-stick coating, which also makes it super easy to clean.
It's not just hot chocolates it's perfected, either. Many customers have shared that they also use their machine to make indulgent frothy coffees like lattes and cappuccinos.
Available now over on QVC for a reduced price of £99.95, we recommend adding this bundle to your shopping basket as soon as you can ready for the upcoming festive season.
What's inside the Hotel Chocolat bundle?
2 x Pod Cups
1 x Milky sachet (35g)
1 x Classic sachet (35g)
1 x Salted Caramel sachet (35g)
1 x Hazelnut sachet (35g)
1 x Intense 85% Ghana sachet (35g)
1 x Supermilk Blood Orange sachet (35g)
1 x Dark with Chilli sachet (35g)
1 x Dark with Peppermint sachet (35g)
1 x White & Vanilla sachet (35g)
1 x Nutmilk sachet (35g)
1 x Black Forest sachet (35g)
1 x Latte sachet (35g)
What the reviews say
Fairly new to QVC, the bundle only has 10 reviews with an average 4.2 star rating. Even so, shoppers haven't been shy to comment on how happy they are with their purchases.
"Decided to treat myself after seeing the Velvetiser last year. I tried it out for the first time today and I am so happy with it! I'm looking forward to trying out all the different flavours. It makes the drink to the perfect temperature and was lovely and comforting after a dog walk in the rain!"
"Comforting, creamy, quick. The choice of chocolate sachets is great and I will buy more to replenish the beautiful tin they come in. The hot chocolate is on another level!"
"The hot chocolate is second to none, better than anything I have tasted. I have used the flakes that came with it and have also bought the mixed boxed of different flavours which are scrumptious. Even my husband likes it, which is saying something. My daughter now wants one so will be getting her one for Christmas. It did come with a voucher for the dunking biscuits which are lovely, different flavours. If we go on a picnic I do myself hot chocolate to take with me and put it in my lock and lock flask."
"It's a real treat. Quite indulgent, really. It's perfect to drink, just the right temperature. The only thing I found is half a sachet is enough. One criticism is the lead could be longer. But yes, it won't be going back. MY treat."
This is one of the best items I have got in a long time. Also got one for my daughter and partner for Christmas, which I know they will love."
Shop now: Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser with 12 Assorted Sachets in Tin | £99.95 (Was £113) from QVC
Shop now: The Velvetiser | £99.95 from Hotel Chocolat
If you're a hot chocolate aficionado, this year Hotel Chocolat launched its first ever Velvetiser Drinking Chocolate Advent Calendar, filled with 24 festive sachets to try including mince pie and salted caramel.