Buzz Café at 101 High Street, Lower Hutt took out the title for the best hot chocolate with their ‘Hot and All that Jazz’ entry – featuringa slow simmered hot chocolate and a lolly bar to create your own personalised drink.Over the period of the promotion, Buzz served around 900 hot chocolates.
The ‘Sweet As’ Hutt’s Hot Chocolate Challenge, now in its third year, saw thousands of hot chocolates consumed. 13 businesses participated in the challenge, from cafes to restaurants and bakeries.
Council’s CBD Development Manager Cyndi Christensen says the challenge is an opportunity to raise the profile of hospitality in Lower Hutt by attracting people to the CBD, one hot chocolate at a time.
“The challenge has been a fantastic success and a great way to warm up the CBD during winter. We collected more than 2100 official challenge entries and numbers reported by the cafés suggested we had three times that number take part,” says Cyndi.
For one café, it was their first time participating in the challenge.
“They had only just taken over as new owners a few weeks before. They realised that participating in the challenge would showcase their business in a way traditional advertising could not.
“All reported an increase in customers and in new customers with participating businesses reporting increases in business of 10% to nearly 40%.”
It’s estimated that between 6000-7000 hot chocolates were sold during the challenge. There were 62% more public votes submitted and twice as many selfies posted to the Facebook page.
Introduced this year was the ‘Sweet As’ Passport, sponsored by helloworld Lower Hutt, with a prize of a $1000 travel voucher. To be eligible, the passport needed to be stamped by each participating business. The winner was drawn yesterday by Mayor Ray Wallace and helloworld owners, Paul and Christine Borrie.