What’s Up With Dudes and Hot Chocolate?

posted in: Day In The Life 21
Delicious hot chocolate. Photo: Wikipedia.
Mmm. Chocolate-y and hot and vanilla-y. Photo: Wikipedia.


WARNING: This post is full of admittedly lame stereotypes (e.g., women love chocolate) and also conclusions drawn from non-scientific data. Enjoy!

You will often find me enjoying a hot beverage in the afternoon. Sometimes, I drink alone. Sometimes, I will have female company, such as a sister or girlfriend. Other times, it’s a fella I’ve got with me as we order drinks and then try not to burn our mouths on our drinks.

Maybe I’m at a rehearsal and a male colleague and I pop over to Starbucks for a quick break. Maybe a hot beverage occurs because a gentleman and I are on a date in the afternoon and we decide to do something cute, like walk, and a warm drink sounds like a good addition to the moment.

Yesterday, because I was with a dude and we got hot drinks, I realized something:

Dudes like hot chocolate. It’s a thing.

I’m making this claim because I have a ton of anecdotal evidence to support it. (Please add your own evidence in the comments and let’s see if we can really give this silly, useless-but-still-interesting-slash-endearing observation some legs.) Here are four examples of guys liking hot chocolate. I’d like to call them Choco Case Studies.

Choco Case Study No. 1
Technically, my first date with Claus was when he saw me performing onstage at the Green Mill and we stayed up talking until the wee hours. But our first official “Do you want to go with me to _____?” date was at a restaurant on Michigan Avenue the following afternoon. I, being hungover and a lady, ordered a kir royale — and Claus ordered a hot chocolate. This struck me as adorable, especially after my second kir royale. Over the course of the next 18 months, I would see Claus order many hot chocolates.

Choco Case Study No. 2
My friend John? Hot chocolate-holic! He’s always drinking them, even in warmer weather.

Choco Case Study No. 3
Juan Carlos, a new friend I’ve made at school, suggested the other day that I could come hang out at his photography studio and work on my big project for my Design For Writers class while he finished preparing his critique. “We could get a lot done,” he said, then: “We could have hot chocolate.”

Choco Case Study No. 4
Why, just yesterday I had a bite to eat with Brian, another new school friend who also works at the newspaper. When the waiter put down our mugs — it was the brunch hour — mine was full of coffee. “What did you order?” I asked, eyeing his cup’s foamy top. “Hot chocolate,” he replied, and took a swig. This is when I realized a pattern was emerging.

What is it with dudes and hot chocolate? I don’t know any woman who orders hot chocolate unless she’s ice skating or carolling.

Personally, I don’t order hot chocolate because I usually have some kind of chocolate in my purse, which means I’ve probably recently had some chocolate and I’m good. This always-at-hand chocolate leads me to order a black coffee, for example, when making my hot beverage selection. Do men order hot chocolate more than women because they have low blood-chocolate levels? If this is the case, we need to fully support these hot chocolate orders.

Perhaps men like drinking hot chocolate because it’s an historically manly thing to do. I did some research (e.g., googling “what’s the deal with guys and hot chocolate?”) and it turns out, history is full of stories of conquistadors and explorers drinking great quantities of hot chocolate on their travels and pillages. Robert Falcon Scott trekked through Antarctica in 1912 and survived (at least for awhile) on stew and hot chocolate. Before that, Aztec heavy Montezuma drank something like 50 goblets of it a day. Even if a goblet is not that big, that’s a lot of cocoa.

Maybe “guys” don’t drink a lot of hot chocolate at all; maybe I just happen to know a bunch of guys who do. Maybe I’m dealing with grave confirmation bias.

Or… Oh, dear. Maybe all the Choco Case Studies I cited are flipped around entirely and I’ve really got this whole thing wrong. Maybe Claus, John, Juan Carlos, and Brian have all thought at one time or another, “Why is it that when I’m around Mary Fons I want to drink hot chocolate?”

Science is hard.