Warming Up to Winter – Boston’s Hot Cocoa Hot Spots
You’ve been donning the down and turning up your collar against the wind for about a month now. At this point, the chilly winds have probably driven you to the brink of craziness. No joke. It’s cold out. There’s a rumor that winter’s coming. But not in a Game of Thrones way. Instead it’s in a way that involves piping hot cocoa (tons of marshmallows, please), naughty-or-nice lists and fluffy flannels.
It’s time to unhunch your shoulders from around your ears, unwrap your itchy scarf and let your hat head out for all to see. Grab a big mug of hot chocolate and cozy up to this Boston wintertime treat at one (or all) of our favorite downtown Boston places.
Revere Hotel Boston Common (200 Stuart Street Boston, 617-482-1800): This favorite hotel hot spot is bringing back its holiday pop-up cafe. Pop it Like it’s Hot, a gourmet hot chocolate pop-up shop, lights up the lobby every Friday through December 26 from 3pm to 6pm. Bader Ali, Executive Chef at the Rveere, specializes in unique hot chocolate of the exotic variety. Ali uses hot cocoa mix from Boston’s bean-to-bar chocolate maker, Taza, so you can expect one-of-a-kind flavors like banana coconut hot chocolate with macadamia nut, salted caramel crunch, s’mores and cinnamon mocha peanut butter cup. Because ‘tis the season for giving, you“pay-what-you-want” for your treat and your donation benefits local nonprofits The Home for Little Wanderers and the Boston Chapter of the Animal Rescue League. That’s pretty sweet, pun 100 percent intended.
Caffe Nero (560 Washington Street, 617-936-3432): This Millennium Place café offers hot solutions to the effects of the blustery New England winter weather. How can you argue with comfy seating, a book nook, cozy fireplace and giant windows to gaze safely out at the swirling snow? This family-run coffee house has taken ages to perfect its Italian espresso (think dark notes of toasted bread and intense dark chocolate, with chocolate powder sprinkles). Now they’re upping the sweet tooth ante with the perfect cup of hot cocoa. Their Peppermint Hot Chocolate has a touch of peppermint finished with whipped cream and candy cane sprinkles, bringing a flurry of fun to the art of cocoa drinking.
Cafe Fleuri (The Langham Hotel, Boston, 250 Franklin Street, 617-451-1900): A seasonal institution, Boston’s famous Chocolate Bar returns for its 26th season with more than 100 dessert combinations. Get your sweet teeth ready, because this is serious business. Every Saturday afternoon, Executive Chef Mark Sapienza and Executive Pastry Chef Ryan Pike share their sweet traditions of lavish confections. Your chocolate cravings are tempted at this chocolate wonderland with an all-you-can-enjoy buffet of an array of scrumptious desserts, including chocolate fountains, crepes, Whoopie Pies and more. They have a dark chocolate hot chocolate, as well as an adult chocolate cocktail menu featuring cocoa-infused martinis like Mint Saturday (crème de menthe, Southern Comfort, vodka and hot cocoa). Beginning January 3, Chef Pike will add a milk chocolate hot chocolate to the menu as well.
It’s hot cocoa time. You deserve it. And we’re pretty sure warming up to this idea won’t take you long.