Last Sunday the Man Who Cooks and I wanted a nice warm drink after driving back from the country. Mr Tulk's, the state library's own excellent cafe, was not open (and why not?), so we went next door to the Queen Victoria complex, expecting to have a choice of cafes. Not so, it seems, only a very busy chocolate cafe, so we thought "great". This would fulfill two requirements: warm drink and rich dessert-type sugar hit in one.
After a bit of a wait, and getting close to the time when I'd have to leave for the talk at the library, our "hot" chocolate drinks arrived. Well, they were not so much chocolate drinks, definitely not hot, but more do-it-yourself chocolate drinks, similar to if you ordered a salad and the waiter brought the lettuce, tomatoes and other ingredients, along with a knife and chopping board, as well as bottles of vinegar and oil, etc. and then you proceeded to make your own salad.
What arrived at our table was a cutsy-poo ceramic structure with a candle at the bottom to keep the thimble full of milk above it warm. And this is essential because you need that "heat" to - wait for it! - melt the chocolate chips which were supplied separately on a plate! These you are meant to gradually add to the thimble of milk and stir and sip it with a very clever metal device that was a "straw" with a round bit at one end for stirring. If you're wondering what that would look like, just think of the little mirror-thingie your dentist uses to see into your mouth. Oh, and when you run low on milk, the tiniest of ceramic jugs, which wouldn't be out of place in a doll's tea set, was there for you to generously add to the little "warming tower". To make this an even more interactive experience, the candle kept going out and we needed to flag down a busy staff person to reignite the drink warming flame.
By this time, I did not have time to fiddle around waiting for my chocolate chips to melt. Yes, I know it's special chocolate but it's only a hot chocolate drink, folks - get over it! So I scooped up the remaining chips, popped them in my mouth, and left the MWC to ponder where the value was in the $6 per drink. And it wasn't even warm.
P.S. Susie's comment gave me an idea. I didn't have a camera with me, but I could certainly find a photo on the internet. Here tis! The jug here is bigger than the one we had, and there weren't as many chocolate chips. But you see what I mean about the dentist's mirror thingie?!