Excuse me if I slobber while I write this… I just can’t contain myself.
What you see above is genuine “hot chocolate” – a drinkable concoction consisting mostly of melted pieces of finely chopped chocolate. Forget that cocoa swill that comes in a pouch – we’re talking the real deal here.
If I remember my chocolate history correctly (and I may not), chocolate was originally consumed in a liquid form, not a solid. It was not until later that chefs would remove this “drinking chocolate” from the cup, and introduce the world to the chocolate pastries and candy bars we all know and love today. In my opinion, however, they got it right the first time.
The above delicacy comes from Philly’s Naked Chocolate Cafe, a niche emporium of all things chocolate. It also functions as quite a cute little hang-out, serving coffee and all manner of chocolate and other desserts, including classics like the delectable lemon square below.
The Naked Chocolate Cafe may be exactly the kind of shop I’ve always dreamed of starting, but never really attempted. I’m not surprised that someone had the same idea, but for it to be so well executed the first time out makes me more than a little bit jealous. But I digress.
My first drinking chocolate experience was at a little shop down by the Brooklyn Bridge, called Jacques Torres. It, combined with the ridiculously amazing pizza from Grimaldi’s in the same area, put me into a food daze from which I’ve never quite recovered.
In fact, I’ve run out of words just thinking about it.