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The weather might be the opposite of frightful, but hot chocolate is still pretty damn delightful. Nothing says you can’t sip a cup of sweet, rich liquid while enjoying warm air and sunshine. (Right, California?) Plus, we drink hot coffee year-round, so unseasonable temps are really no reason to skip one of the best treats of the holiday season — especially when it gets dressed up all fancy.
Here’s 10 spots around Philadelphia where you can get your hot cocoa on in style.
At this market-cafe in the ground floor of the gorgeous Ayer Building on Washington Square, hot chocolate comes topped with housemade vanilla-caramel marshmallows ($4). Or, if you want an extra jolt, ask for yours with a shot of La Colombe Different Drum rum, with fresh whipped cream on top ($12).
208 W. Washington Sq., 215-592-6555
This olde time soda fountain manages to be totally throwback without any kitsch. Go for a hot chocolate float, with steamed-to-order Wilbur’s cocoa and a scoop of housemade ice cream ($7). (There’s also something called a “hot milkshake” — just putting it out there.)
116 Market St., 215-627-1899
Ants Pants Cafe
Solid buds of Australian chocolate are mixed with cocoa powder before being steamed with milk and topped with unsweetened Ghirardelli cocoa at this South Street West BYO ($3.50). Bonus: awesome candy bars and cookies from down under.
2212 South St., 215-875-8002
Mexican spiced chocolate gets melted into the cup at this Washington Avenue BYO, where it’s then frothed, steamed and topped with fresh whipped cream ($3.50). Perfect after a taco or plate of chilaquiles.
2025 Washington Ave., 215-278-7579
You might be familiar with the cold treats at these four gelaterias around town (five, if you count sister shop Capofitto), but they’ve also got something special on the hot side: Italian drinking chocolate. Hard to get more decadent than this thick, rich cup ($4).
At this sprawling Parisian bistro on 18th Street (aka the best place for Rittenhouse Square people watching), the hot cocoa comes direct from the pastry kitchen, where they melt down chunks of chocolate and blend them with milk and rich cream ($4.50).
227 S. 18th St., 215-545-2262
It’s a global chain, yes, but it’s one that really, really knows chocolate. If it’s too early for a chocolate martini, pick one of eight cocoa options to fill a heated “hug mug” — there’s even one with peanut butter ($5.95).
1500 Walnut St., 215-344-8150
The eccentric and amusing owner of Italian Market’s Rim Cafe has branched out across the street with this cannoli-focused shop, which also has a dedicated hot chocolate bar. Pick your own slab of chocolate and watch staff melt it into a drink with your choices of flavors ($5 and up).
1205 S. 9th St., 267-928-4501
This South Street West bakeshop is all about pies, but just wait until you try the hot chocolate, which tops steamed Ghirardelli cocoa with chocolate shavings, housemade marshmallows and an (optional) dash of pink peppercorn ($6).
1622 South St., 267-519-2904
Cafe y Chocolate
This Mexican cafe at the south edge of Point Breeze (formerly known as Cafe Con Chocolate) is the place to go if you like a kick in your cocoa. The “chocolate Oaxaca” is steamed with with chile spice and topped with fresh-grated cinnamon ($4.50).
2100 S. Norwood St., 267-639-4506