A friend of mine who I believe holds a black belt in New York City food knowledge recently introduced me to L.A. Burdick in Flatiron. This small, chocolate-centric pastry café is a great alternative to Manhattan’s axis of popular hot chocolate evil of City Bakery, Jacques Torres and Grom.
What I really like about L.A. Burdick’s dark hot chocolate, and what sets it apart from it’s peers is the quality of the chocolate and the level of sweetness. It’s got just the right amount of sweet, which to me, means very little. The house blend is about 68-70% cacao and is very flavorful. It felt like drinking my favorite 72% Dagoba chocolate bar. They also make their hot chocolate standard with 1% milk (you can ask for whole) which means the hot chocolate itself is very “drinkable” rather than sludge-like, as it is at City Bakery or Jacques Torres. People who really like their hot chocolate super thick and heavy, essentially, a cup melted dark chocolate with sugar, might like this hot chocolate less.
Another difference with their standard hot chocolate is that they don’t cut it with anything, such as peanut butter or hot peppers, to alter the flavor, it’s just straight up high-end dark chocolate.
For people who like their hot chocolate a little more sweet and a little less bitter they offer hot milk chocolate (which I didn’t try) but my host, who is a regular, says is quite popular. I didn’t get to try any of their pastries or individual chocolates but I did get to try a fresh-out-of-the-oven chocolate Madeline which was excellent. All of their pastries are made in-house. Look for more coverage of L.A Burdick soon.
Recommended: The daily special dark hot chocolate, special, one-of-a-kind chocolate gifts