This week I reached out for a cup of Chantico drinkable chocolate -- gulp! -- at Starbucks.
And by gulpable chocolate, I don't mean a chocolate shake, hot chocolate, chocolate milk or even Yoo-hoo.
Starbucks has introduced a creamy, dark-chocolate dessert that you sip elegantly while discussing great literature ... or "Hey, buddy, can I borrow the sports section?"
Imagine melted Godiva bars covered with hot fudge and Hershey's syrup. Or my old trick of putting a pint of Ben & Jerry's Brownie Batter in the microwave and then chugging it straight. Even though this is Starbucks, there's no coffee beans about Chantico.
Drinking chocolate isn't really such a weird idea. For 90 percent of chocolate's history, it was consumed mostly in liquid form. Making chocolate bars was a relatively recent European brainstorm, taken to ridiculous heights by a small town in Pennsylvania.
A cup of Chantico is as chocolate as you can get without conking over, unconscious. Fortunately, at Starbucks, with the way people hang around reading and seemingly doing nothing, nobody will notice.
Here's the blueprint: cocoa butter, cocoa powder, sugar and steamed whole milk, whipped to a frenzy, served hot.
Total calories: 390. Fat grams: 20. Dietary fiber: 0 grams. Carbs: 50 grams. Manufacturer's suggested retail price: $2.85 (will vary).
Chantico is not a kid's drink that you slurp down and then wipe your mouth with your sleeve. When you're done with Chantico, you won't leave fingerprints everywhere you go.
Chantico is a nonalcoholic, terribly adult, very continental chocolate beverage that you sip with pinkie extended. However, dunking a butter cookie is permitted.
Plain old hot chocolate will stay on the menu for children. The dessert list continues to feature brownies, tiramisu and crazy carrot cake with cream-cheese frosting. I'll take two slices of that.
The name Chantico comes from the Aztec goddess of hearth and fertility. The creamy texture is pure cocoa butter. The rich flavor is pure cocoa powder. The hefty price is pure Starbucks.
Starbucks is so certain its chocolate drink will fly that the coffee chain has created specially crafted ceramic mugs for Chantico. If you want it to go, a brown paper cup will do. nCopyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times