FAIRFIELD COUNTY, Conn. --- Drink up, Fairfield County. Sunday, Jan. 31 is National Hot Chocolate Day. Celebrate at one of the following cafes, or make your own at home.
Bethel: Molten Java takes its name seriously when it comes to hot chocolate. There are eight volcanic concoctions of interesting cocoa flavors including The Krakatoa (hot chocolate, caramel and cinnamon with coconut whipped cream) and The Vesuvius (black licorice cocoa with marshmallow fluff). Then there's regular hot chocolate made with steamed milk. No hot water or mixes here! Grab a Spoon: 213 Greenwood Ave., (203) 739-0313.
Bridgeport: A high quality Ghirardelli powder along with steamed milk is used to make the hot chocolate at Source . Topped with a dusting of cocoa powder and optional whipped cream, its artful presentation and taste are as important to the staff as its coffee. Grab a Spoon: 2889 Fairfield Ave., (203) 522-5662, www.sourcecoffeehouse.com/ .
Darien: Neat is more than just good coffee. It also has amazing artisanal hot chocolate using a 77 percent dark chocolate from the Phillipines. Topped with housemade whipped cream and you're good to go. Grab a Spoon: 20 Grove St, (203) 202-7215, www.neatcoffee.com/ .
New Canaan: Your sweet tooth will be more than satisfied at Connecticut Muffin where yummy muffins and other baked goods are paired perfectly with hot chocolate, made with steamed milk. Grab a Spoon: 108 Main St., (203) 972-7557, www.connecticutmuffin.com/ .
Norwalk: There is no way you can walk into Chocopologie and not throw your diet out the door. Here, hot chocolate comes with a host of choices: whipped cream or marshmallows? Salted caramel or a Spicy, infused with cinnamon and chipotle? Then there's the Chocopologie, a half-espresso, half-dark chocolate drink, topped with lavender foam. Grab a Spoon :12 S. Main St., (203) 854-4754, www.chocopologie.com/ .
Old Greenwich: Get your chocolate fix at Sweet Pea's Baking Company where the choices include a version made with Brazilian hot chocolate powder for a richer, sweeter concoction, or opt for hot cocoa made with chocolate tablets in milk and dark varieties. Grab a Straw: 212 Sound Beach Ave, (203) 990-0008, www.sweetpeasct.com/ .
Riverside: "Choco Loco Hot Chocolate,” is a popular winter warmer at J House Coffee Shop . The drink uses a high quality cocoa blend from Blue Tulip Chocolates in Rye, ensuring a perfectly decadent indulgence. Grab a Spoon: 1114 E Putnam Ave., (203) 698-6980, www.jhousegreenwich.com/ .
Stamford: Pastry Chef Tracy Assue, City Limit's dessert queen, is known for her coveted Valrhona Hot Chocolate, a combination of heavy cream, milk, sugar, Valrhona chocolate, a cinnamon stick, and vanilla bean... just the thing to warm you up on a winter's day. Grab a Spoon: 135 Harvard Ave., :(203) 348-7000, www.citylimitsdiner.com/ .
Westport: Sip the cold away with a steaming mug of hot chocolate at The Granola Bar . This favorite childhood drink is topped with an army of marshmallows and an overflowing amount of chocolate deliciousness. Grab a Spoon : 275 Post Road E., (203) 349-5202, www.thegranolabarct.com /.
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