Warm yummy drinks during the holidays are a must, and hot cocoa is a perennial favorite. It’s been atypically chilly here in So-Cal, so today I’m sharing some of the best spots in Los Angeles to get a cup of hot cocoa, as well as a few cute ideas for a gourmet hot cocoa bar in your own home.
1. Huckleberry Cafe – Food and Wine Magazine says Huckleberry Cafe has some of the best hot chocolate in the country. Pastry chef and owner Zoe Nathan makes Valrhona syrup, a very high end chocolate. Enjoy this rich, delicious cocoa with some of Huckleberry’s freshly made baked goods. (1014 Wilshire Boulevard in Santa Monica.)
2. Demitasse` – Famous for their lavender hot chocolate. The chocolate-lavender blend is made with cocoa powder mixed with Tahitian vanilla and a splash of lavender oil. The wild floral finish is the perfect balance for the thick, rich chocolate. A fluffed and crisped marshmallow, blow-torched to order, comes with the drink. (135 S. San Pedro Street in Los Angeles and 1149 Third Street in Santa Monica)
3. Short Cake – This bakery-café serves up cocoa, using the same chocolatey chunks made from their Chocolate Chip cookies to create a delectable, rich ganache. The ganache is stirred up with creamy milk from Straus Family Creamery. These impressive ingredients make for an unbelievably indulgent cup of cocoa. (6333 W. Third Street; Stall 316 in Los Angeles)
4. Chocolate Box Cafe – This cute cafe serves at least 15 variations of traditional hot chocolate, including jasmine hot chocolate, mint hot chocolate and sizzling chili hot chocolate, but the most requested cocoa at is the cinnamon hot chocolate. Each cup is made using high-quality Belgian chocolate shavings, steamed to your desired consistency and sweetness. (3939 Cross Creek Road, Suite C100 in Malibu)
5. Jin Patisserie – Singaporean chocolatier Kristy Choo has made this hip Abbott-Kinney culinary destination THE place to be for all things chocolate. The hot cocoa is no exception, which is prepared by combining 72% bittersweet chocolate with steamed milk. This delicious cup of hot chocolate comes served to your table in a pitcher with two delectable floral Earl Grey macaroon cookies.
Yummy, right? But what if you aren’t in the Los Angeles area? Create some holiday fun by setting up a hot cocoa bar at home. These fun hot beverage stations are popping up all over Pinterest and some of my favorite home blogs. I thought I’d share a few. (Click on the name of any site to get more holiday ideas and inspiration.
Are you in the mood for a rich cup of hot chocolate yet? I am! This delicious looking Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate from the Taste & Tell Blog looks divine.
Cheers and happy holidays!