Satisfy your sweet tooth at these cocoa meccas.
Thu Jul 29 2010
RECOMMENDED: Chocolatiers in NYC: The ten best chocolate shops 2013
The artisanal chocolate shop from Rachel Zoe Insler (Union Square Cafe) is tucked into an East Village alley. Her signature item is a pretzel-and-sea-salt caramel truffle. 6 Extra Pl off of E 1st St between Bowery and Second Ave (212-260-7103). Average piece of chocolate: $2.25.
Think of this unassuming midtown shop as a chocolate ambassador: Borne carries only exclusive European imports, making it the sole place in the U.S. to sell the coveted creations of Barcelona's Oriol Balaguer. The pod-shaped chocolates house some truly unexpected flavors, from white chocolate ganache with olive oil to hazelnut dark chocolate with Pop Rocks. 485 Park Ave between 58th and 59th Sts (212-755-5150, borneconfections.com). Average chocolate: $2.45.
Native New Yorker Joan Coukos has studied the best of Old World chocolate and created something for the contemporary sweet tooth. Look for unusual and eclectic flavors like shiso-lime, chipotle and ouzo. 27 W 20th St between Fifth and Sixth Aves (212-229-4797, chocolatmoderne.com). Average chocolate bar: $7.50.
Jacques Torres Chocolate
The only thing that beats a decadent piece of chocolate is one that comes fresh off the conveyor belt. Indulge in choc-master Jacques Torres’s otherworldly delights at his chocolate factories and shops. If you’d rather sip your chocolate than munch on it, enjoy the famously suave, rich hot chocolate. 285 Amsterdam Ave between 73rd and 74th Sts * Chelsea Market, 75 Ninth Ave between 15th and 16th Sts * 350 Hudson St between Charlton and King Sts * (212-414-2462, mrchocolate.com). Piece of chocolate: $1.50.
This chocolate shop sells many varieties, though we are partial to the chili-sesame truffle: After you bite into its crunchy, smoky coating, the heat spreads across your tongue. 452 Fifth Ave at 40th St (212-525-6099, keeschocolates.com). Piece of chocolate: $2.45.
The 2009 opening of this Gramercy chocolate caf was a homecoming of sorts for Larry and Paula Burdick, who started a wholesale business in Red Hook in 1987 (their top customer was David Bouley) before moving the factory to New Hampshire. The excellence of Burdick’s hand-formed bonbons—such as the signature mice, available in dark, milk and white chocolate and filled with a sophisticated ganache that’s whipped with orange juice, espresso, and cinnamon with port wine, respectively—seduced us years ago. Also available at the caf: Viennese-style desserts and velvety hot chocolate. 5 E 20th St between Fifth Ave and Broadway (212-796-0143, burdickchocolate.com)
La Maison du Chocolat
Don't expect to find any trendy flavors or froufrou fillings here. At La Maison, the focus is smooth-as-silk chocolate ganache crafted in the French tradition. Savor simplicity with dark chocolate bonbons, ganache-filled macarons and ultrarich hot chocolate. 30 Rockefeller Plaza at 49th St (212-265-9404) * 1018 Madison Ave between 78th and 79th Sts (212-744-7117) * 63 Wall St between Hanover and Pearl Sts (212-952-1123) * (lamaisonduchocolat.com). Average bonbon: $2.
A West Village institution since 1923, this lavender-bedecked shop continues to be a bountiful garden of treats (you can also pick them up at the Grand Central Terminal location). Selections venture far beyond truffles, from chocolate-covered pretzels to toffee butter-crunch to Li-Lac’s legendary fudge. 40 Eighth Ave at Jane St (212-924-2280) * Grand Central Terminal, E 43rd St at Lexington Ave (212-370-4866) * (li-lacchocolates.com). Average chocolate: $2.50.
Mast Brothers Chocolate
Brothers Michael and Rick Mast's weekend-only retail store sells their entire line of specialty chocolates, crafted directly from the bean in Brooklyn. Bars include an 81 percent dark chocolate brightened with fleur de sel, while a rotating selection of new creations are available exclusively at the shop. 105 North 3rd St between Berry St and Wythe Ave, Williamsburg, Brooklyn (718-388-2625, mastbrotherschocolate.com). Average chocolate bar: $7.
Vosges Haut Chocolate
Having charmed Soho, chocolatier Katrina Markoff is expanding her avant-cocoa venture to the Upper East Side. Uptown-only features like an ice-cream station and cheese-and-chocolate pairings join her lineup of inspired truffles. 1100 Madison Ave at 83rd St (212-717-2929) * 132 Spring St between Greene and Wooster Sts (212-625-2929) * (vosgeschocolate.com). Average truffle: $2.75.
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