Not exactly a coffee shop, Chocolate Bar is my next stop on the Lower Manhattan Coffee Crawl. Located on 8th Avenue between 12th and Jane Streets, it’s only a short hop skip and a jump from my apartment. With the bitter and cold New York City air that’s blown in this week, this coffee crawler didn’t want to crawl too far.
With a thick and heavy wooden door and window frames, your first impression of this shop is that it’s a very cute and antique-y place. When you walk in you are drenched in an amazing and delicious smell of chocolate. The light colored hardwood flooring complements the dark chocolate-colored tables, chair and shelving units. There are only 3 tables here but they are the perfect size for sitting down and doing work (or in my case, blogging). The cherry walnut benches for sitting are surprisingly comfortable. The back of the benches are decorated with the phrase “A Place To Sit.” I just thought this was cute and funny and it gave even more personality to the Chocolate Bar. I probably wouldn’t come here to hang out or to socialize as the seating area feels constrained and small. I personally like to have a more open and comfortable seating area when I’m in the mood for chatting with friends.
On the opposite side of the seating area, probably no more than 20 feet away, is a glorious wall of chocolate. Flavored chocolate bars and squares, truffles, bricks, candies, mugs and even t-shirts adorn this wall. The t-shirts read “chocolate boy” and “chocolate girl,” again, more cute personality for the shop. When you finally make it through all of the chocolate goodness to the front counter to place an order, you are greeted with (besides very nice employees) displays of baked goods. They have chocolate-covered oreos, brownies, chocolate-covered rice krispy treats, scones, and my personal favorite the peanut butter chocolate chip cookie. Although I didn’t get this today I have definitely indulged in the past. Incredibly decadent, moist, fresh and full of chocolate peanut buttery goodness, this cookie is beyond amazing. It will definitely require a full glass of milk as an accompaniment. However, if you’re feeling daring and you really don’t mind the calories and sugar, you really have to dive in to the hot chocolate. This drink is absolutely THE MOST rich cup of melted chocolate I have ever tasted in my entire life. So. Good.
I was actually able to resist the sweets and goodies of Chocolate Bar so that I could focus on their coffee alone. They feature only one drip coffee and one type of espresso bean. Since this isn’t a coffee bar, that part of the business is kept simple yet good. My coffee today was a medium drip. Simple, light, not bitter or burnt at all, this cup of coffee just may be one of my favorites on the crawl so far. To further streamline the business and keep utility costs down, they only serve their drinks in to-go cups. There aren’t any cute coffee mugs with which to sip. However, similar to the rest of the vibe of the shop, the coffee cups feature a simple yet clever phrase, “drink more chocolate!” I definitely want to.
I honestly cannot say enough good things about Chocolate Bar. I thank them for having free and easy-t0-access WiFi. I also want to thank them for having a well-designed site which also features e-Commerce so that the customer may order anything that they see in the store right from the website. Well done Chocolate Bar!