Winter is the perfect time to grab a cup of hot chocolate that goes beyond the everyday from a Seattle cafe
Nothing says winter in Seattle like gliding down a slick chute on a snow tube, taking the kids for spin around an ice skating rink, or heading out on a winter hike. And nothing warms you up after a day of winter play in the Seattle’s nearby mountains than a cup of hot chocolate, Seattle families. So the next time you and the kids need a mug of rich and creamy hot cocoa, don’t reach for a mix. Pile in the car and head to a local cozy cafe where they’re getting creative with their hot chocolate choices. We’re talking real European drinking chocolate, homemade marshmallows, and secret spices that add a bite to your cup. But don’t take our word for it, check out our favorite hot chocolate Seattle shops while it’s still cold outside.
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Hot Cakes Molten Chocolate Cakery
It's hard to go wrong at a shop that prides itself on serving warm chocolate lava cakes for a living. So the next time you've got a craving for a rich cup of hot chocolate, we're here to tell you there's nothing wrong with pairing it with cake. Turn up the heat with a spicy hot chocolate for parents (hint: they can also spike it if you wish) or keep it calm and creamy for the kids.
5427 Ballard Ave. N.W.
1650 E. Olive Way
Among their four boutiques, the Fran’s U-Village locale displays chocolate like a jewelry store displays diamonds; but don’t let the fancy interior intimidate you. The chocolate displays are a testament to the love put into these delectable treats. If you can manage to pry yourselves away from the selection of truffles, place your order for Dark Hot Sipping Chocolate. With a 3 oz. and 5 oz. option, your petite connoisseurs are sure to enjoy a belly full of chocolate-y goodness. Each cup comes with a perfect mound of whipped cream and an additional chocolate square for the road.
Locations in Downtown Seattle, University Village, Georgetown & Bellevue.
If you're looking for a cup of hot chocolate that is thick and creamy and oh-so delicious, look no further than Chocolati. This popular cafe, with locations in Greenwood, Wallingford and Green Lake as well as the Downtown Library, doesn't serve hot cocoa made with water or milk. Nope. They serve what is technically known as "drinking chocolate." In addition to house faves like the Dark House Hot Chocolate with dark chocolate marshmallows, the cafe offers a robust menu of specialty hot chocolates. Get your chocolate-y cup infused with lavender, raspberry, Irish cream, peanut butter, peppermint, cayenne...the list goes on. Psst...be sure to save room for one of their delish truffles or add a slice of quiche or a croissant to your order to balance out all the sweetness.
Locations in Greenwood, Green Lake, Wallingford & Downtown Seattle
Sip scrumptious cocoa and support a great cause while you're at it at Bellevue’s Bellden Café. Located in the heart of Old Bellevue on Main Street, this café was a Reader’s Digest 2020 Finalist for Nicest Place in America. Serving tasty breakfast and lunch items, coffee, pastries, and of course, cocoa, this café has a unique mission. Bellden Café partners with non-profit organizations, creating signature drinks to highlight different organizations and donating a portion of the profits from the sale of the drink. It also operates as a community hub, especially during the pandemic, collecting donations and goods to support its neighbors in need. When you order from Bellden Café, you get wholesome, delicious food and drinks while giving back to the community. Definitely a win-win.
10527 Main St.
After tasting Chocolat Vitale’s traditional European drinking chocolate, you’ll never look elsewhere for cocoa. This Ballard café features traditional European hot chocolate that always receives rave reviews. The sinfully rich drinking chocolate is concocted from a blend of pure Swiss and Belgian chocolate. This decadent drink contains no cocoa powder–it’s made from 100 percent pure chocolate. The café serves hand-crafted drinks using its chocolate and Velton’s Coffee. You can also enjoy other eclectic food and beverages while shopping its thoughtfully curated selection of art and collectibles.
6257 3rd Ave. N.W.
Nestled within the busy corridors of Pike Place Market you’ll find a chocolate paradise! Indi Chocolate offers a wide range of cacao-based products including teas, spice rubs, mixology kits and body care products, all created using small batch, single origin dark chocolate directly sourced from international farmers and cooperatives. Tantalize your taste buds with a cup of their single origin drinking chocolate. Or, for the ultimate chocolate-y experience, order the ultra-rich sipping chocolate. This beverage has an entire bar’s worth of chocolate in it and offers a thicker texture than traditional hot chocolate. All of their products originate from beans sourced from around the world, giving unique flavors and textures for every chocolate connoisseur.
Pike Place Market
1901 Western Ave., Ste. D
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Bakery Nouveau knows chocolate—and just about every other treat under the sun. World renowned baker, William Leaman, opened the first Bakery Nouveau in West Seattle and has expanded to two other Seattle area locations. You might be in the mood for a delicious hot cocoa, but don’t forget to bring your appetite. The bakery’s expansive menu is filled with baked goods, sandwiches, pastries and of course, chocolate. Take home some of Bakery Nouveau’s handcrafted bars or chocolates, made fresh, in-house with its signature chocolates. Choose from a rotating selection of mouthwatering morsels, including favorites like salted caramel or coconut ganache. The bakery’s chocolates are truly works of art.
Locations in West Seattle, Capitol Hill & Burien
Located in Madison Park, Arosa Cafe has been serving up delish cups of espresso and hot cocoa to families for over 21 years. This warm and friendly neighborhood cafe uses a proprietary, microroasted blend from Fonte Coffee in their handcrafted cups of Joe, imported Swiss chocolate in their mochas and hot chocolate and organic milk (including soy, rice, and almond).
Good to Know: Arosa Cafe mixes fresh shaved chocolate into each steaming cup of cocoa and serves world famous Belgian Liege snack waffles that are so naturally sweet, you won't even miss the syrup. Don't forget about their grilled panini sandwiches, made with a tangy olive oil blend and only the freshest ingredients.
3121 E. Madison St., Ste. 101
Dilettante Mocha Cafe
Chocolate can be very personal; a debate between whether dark or milk chocolate is better can polarize a conversation. This is why Dilettante made our list for best places to grab hot chocolate; you get to choose your favorite. With six (very difficult) choices; extra dark, Mexicano, dark, ephemere dark, milk and white, every visit to Dilettante is different. With melting pots behind the counter, each cup of hot chocolate is melted down to liquid perfection. This is the perfect place to bring your mini-chocolate lover to determine where their chocolate loyalties lay (nudge nudge – white chocolate).
Good to Know: The Kent Station Dilettante location has an enormous brick fireplace located directly outside the store that is a delightful place to cozy up with a cup of hot chocolate on a cool evening.
Locations in Seattle, Bellevue, Kent & SeaTac Airport
With four locations open in Seattle, Caffè Umbria offers the Italian take on hot chocolate. It’s a thicker, spoonable chocolate that’s served with whipped cream. In addition to a “moka bar,” drip coffees and number of traditional espresso-based Italian drinks served in colorful Italian ceramics, Umbria’s Ballard location offers baked goods from Le Panier and Macrina, light lunch offerings from Volterra, a Tuscan-inspired restaurant next door and a good selection of Italian wine and beer.
Locations in Pioneer Square, Westlake, Olive Way & Ballard
Take a trip a little off the beaten path and find your way to the Greenbridge neighborhood nestled in White Center. Dubsea Coffee is well worth the trek, and is settled comfortably among bright and colorful housing and the vibrant local community center. A cup of hot chocolate is filled with rich, deep flavors and is topped with a hazelnut whipped cream.
9910 8th Ave. S.W.