General English


  • A bitter dark brown solid mixture of cocoa butter and cocoa bean solids, made from the fermented pods of the cacao tree from which the seeds are removed, and which are dehusked, roasted and shelled, then ground into a paste which is worked between rollers until the correct smooth physical form is achieved. This chocolate is then further processed to make cocoa solids, cocoa butter, cocoa powder, chocolates (confectionery), cooking chocolate, couverture, etc.
  • A confectionery item made by mixing chocolate and cocoa butter to give about 35 per cent fat content then flavouring with almond, vanilla and/or other spices and sweetening to taste. In the UK, chocolates are adulterated with vegetable fat, butter fat and milk solids.


  • noun a popular sweet food made from the cocoa bean
  • noun a small sweet made from chocolate


  • an aroma associated particularly with red wines made from Cabernet Sauvignon grapes

Origin & History of “chocolate”

Chocolate is one of the contributions made to English by the Nahuatl language of the Aztec people. their xocolatl was a compound noun formed from xococ ‘bitter’ and atl ‘water’, and therefore when first adopted by European languages (via Spanish) it was used for the drink ‘chocolate’. this was its original sense in English, and it was not for half a century or more that it came to be applied to solid, edible ‘chocolate’.