9 of the best hot chocolates in Norfolk
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What better way to banish the winter chills than to warm up with an indulgent hot chocolate with all the trimmings – from fluffy clouds of whipped cream and marshmallows to macarons, brownie pieces or even a cheeky tot of something boozy? Here are some of our favourites.
1. Alchemista Coffee Co, St Gregory's Alley, Norwich
Currently the number one ranked coffee and tea shop in Norwich on Tripadvisor, steampunk-inspired Alchemista Coffee Co in St Gregory's Alley made headlines earlier this year with its Easter egg hot chocolate. Served in a chocolate egg in one of their signature skull glasses, cacao hot chocolate was poured into the egg until it melted and filled the glass, then garnished with whipped cream and a dusting of chocolate. Alchemista's regular hot chocolate is pretty fine at any time of year - and look out for other seasonal specials and coffee cocktails by following them on Instagram. The Emperor (vodka, Kahlua, Baileys, double espresso and a crown of whipped cream and chocolate dusting) is this year's ultimate Christmas treat.
2. The Kitchen at St George's, St George's Distillery, Roudham
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Based at St George's whisky distillery at Roudham, The Kitchen at St George's has recently revealed its festive drinks menu, offering the classic seasonal pairings of gingerbread latte, hazelnut mocha and orange hot chocolate. For even more of a winter warmer, try their hot chocolate with a tot of Norfolk Nog single malt whisky cream liqueur. Cheers!
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3. Benji's, first floor at Jarrold, Norwich
The Hot Chocolate Temptation at Benji's at Jarrold could not be more aptly named. Hot liquid chocolate, served with marshmallows and cream - resistance is futile. Full fat, skimmed and soya milk options are available.
4. Macarons and More, Royal Arcade, Norwich
Run by MasterChef finalist Tim Kinnaird, city patisserie Macarons and More unveiling its indulgent winter hot chocolate flavours on Instagram has turned into a real event. Head to its shop on the corner of the Royal Arcade and warm yourself up with a maple spice or s'mores flavour - the latter, inspired by the American campfire favourite, is a confection of chocolate cookie flavoured syrup and topped with cream, cookies, chocolate sauce and a giant toasted marshmallow. Also on the menu is the signature macaron flavoured hot chocolate topped with cream, chocolate sauce, macaron crunch and a macaron of your choice - or let your imagination run free and create your own combination.
5. Grey Seal Coffee Co, High Street, Sheringham
Speciality roasters Grey Seal Coffee Co, who have a roastery at Glandford, take their coffee very seriously - and the same ethos is applied to their hot chocolate. Conoisseurs love that you can choose the strength of your chocolate, meaning that whether you prefer sweet or bitter there is something for every palate.
6. The Lookout, Lady Anne's Drive, Holkham
The Lookout Cafe at Holkham is the perfect place for a pitstop and a warm-up after a bracing winter beach walk to blow away the cobwebs. And it's getting into the Christmas spirit by offering customers one of the ultimate festive flavour pairings - hot chocolate with a shot of orange syrup. Topped with cream, of course.
7. Erpingham House, Tombland, Norwich
Just when you thought that this plant-based restaurant in Tombland, with its much-photographed flower wall, couldn't get any more Instagrammable, your hot chocolate now comes personalised with your initials. Coconut, almond, soya and oat milks are available.
8. The Cuppie Hut, Norwich Market
So, technically this is a pudding rather than a drink, but the Cuppie Hut on Norwich Market's warm chocolate brownie hot pot (just the name alone is enough to give you a sugar rush) is a must-try for chocoholics. The brownie comes smothered with dreamy chocolate ganache and cream. Vegan options are available.
9. Figbar, St John Maddermarket, Norwich
As you would expect from these maestros of all things sweet, Figbar in St John Maddermarket has got hot chocolate pretty much nailed too. In November it unveiled a new addition to the menu: cinnamon spiced salted caramel hot chocolate - a celebration of all things delicious and wintery in one mug.