Explore USA – When in Virginia: Uncle Julio Chocolate Piñata Experience

This Chocolate Piñata is so far the highlight of my food trip in Virginia. I cannot recall how many restaurants we tried in this trip, almost every single day we are eating out and trying different restaurants, but Uncle Julio Mexican Restaurant in Reston, Virginia is one especial place for me, just because of the Chocolate Piñata.

Chocolate Piñata

Note: The photo above is not my own, this was taken online.

Their Chocolate Piñata is handmade and stuffed with seasonally fresh fruit and homemade mini churros, accompanied by freshly made raspberry, chocolate and caramel sauces and house made whipped cream. This desert is for sharing and a big hit for larger group.

Chocolate Piñata at Uncle Julio Mexican Restaurant

Note: The photo above is not my own, this was taken online.

I cannot remember the last time I feel this excited like kid again. Eating the Chocolate Piñata is not what excited me, it’s the thought of breaking the fragile and beautifully molded chocolate ball and taking photo of it. This desert is not something you eat alone, don’t even try! But then who am I to judge you if you want to order this for yourself alone, as I always say, “whatever makes you happy”.

To take the photo or to break the Pinata? It was a tough call for me, either I sit and take the photo while someone else breaks it, or be the one to do the honor of breaking it. I choose the latter one. So, I guess it is only proper to give credits to my teammates Joaquim and John whose photos I used for this blog.

Be gentle please ..


Note: The photo above is not my own, this was taken online.

Once served in your table, the waiter will give you a stainless fondue stick for each one to use. The waiter will hand out something that looks like a wood rolling-pin to break the Chocolate Pinata. The waiter will then give instructions on how to properly break it. What you do is you lightly tap both sides of the ball until it breaks. The chocolate is not too thick, one or two slight tap will break it. Don’t just smash it one time, you want to savor the breaking moment and of course, to give your friends time to snap some photos. Also, this will avoid the goodies inside from scattering all over your table. Once the sides are broken, tap the top to release the remaining chocolate from the hook. Last and most important part, dig in and enjoy the feast of fruits and chocolate treats!

The big question …

The presentation of this desert is hands down gorgeous and a real scene stealer. People from other table cannot help themselves from staring and admiring it.  I did the same,  I watched the other tables while waiting for our turn to have it. It feels like forever!


Anyway, I guess the big question is, “Is it as good as it looks”?  Yes and No. Let me explain that. I will start with the filling  and sauces and save the main part for the last. As I mentioned above, the inside is stuffed with fresh fruits and churros. They used good quality fruits, it is very fresh, sweet, juicy and quite huge in sizes. The mini churros are soft in the inside and crunchy from the outside. The caramel, chocolate and raspberry sauce are ok,  same goes with the house made whipped cream. I don’t find  anything especial about it, but it does make a good combination and dips for fresh fruits and churros.


Lets check the chocolate ball, the center of attraction of this desert. For someone who like milk chocolate , you might like it. I said might because, even for milk chocolate , I find it sweet and sugary, rather than smooth and creamy. If sweet is your preference, then this  big ball is for you. In my opinion, I think dark chocolate will be better for this Chocolate Piñata. The bittersweet taste of dark chocolate will allow you to eat more and it will blend well with fresh fruits and churros. But then again, it all depends in your preference.


As I was eating it, it occurred to me that this is not just the issue between using milk chocolate or dark chocolate, but most importantly the quality of the chocolate. I may be wrong, but it doesn’t taste like a good quality chocolate to me. I am thinking maybe using a good quality chocolate could be an issue for price. The ball is quite big, and the coating slightly thick, so using a good quality chocolate will be too expensive. The desert cost only $25.00, which I think is reasonable for a group to share. Although I wouldn’t mind paying for more if it will make the overall experience better and enjoyable.


Being a chocolate lover person, this is what slightly disappointed me. I wished to eat more of the chocolate, but it’s just on the sweeter side for me. If you ask me if I will still recommend it, YES, I will. You can buy fresh fruits, or even make your own sauces and whipped cream, but the fun experience of breaking the Chocolate Piñata while your friends eagerly wait to take the photo is a great experience is worth the price.


Next time, I will pass the honor of breaking this to someone, and I will be  the one sitting and taking photos while someone else breaks it. The fact the I get to share this with my teammates is something that I will remember  when I think of the excitement that I had with this Chocolate Piñata. Thanks to them, they made this possible. So, when you visit Virginia, stop by at Uncle Julio Mexican Restaurant and break it. They have lots of other food options to enjoy too, not just this desert. Just a teaser, they also have fresh warm house made tortilla and chips to start your meal, and a guacamole that they make in front of you when you order it. Really cool!

Enjoy! If you make this, share and tag me in Instagram #SweetNSpicyLiving. I would like to see your creations too.

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