8 Spots for Hot Cocoa in the Hudson Valley

Try these local cafes for the perfect cup of steaming hot chocolate in the region.


Verdigris Tea & Chocolate’s popular hot chocolate

Courtesy photo


There are times when only a mug of hot chocolate (preferably topped off with a marshmallow or whipped cream dollop) will do to warm you up. A number of local shops specialize in the traditional chocolate-cum-milk combination, but some offer newer variations: a spicy Mexican blend with chili, or an even sweeter option with butterscotch Schnapps. Kim Bach, who opened her Verdigris Tea shop in Hudson 11 years ago, eventually renamed it Verdigris Tea & Chocolate after she increased her sweets inventory. In fact, the hot chocolate became so popular that it prompted Bach to open a second shop in Catskill, where she serves new recipes, including one made from melted chocolate ganache. “It’s like drinking a chocolate bar,” she says.



2 Alices Coffee Lounge

Cornwall-on-Hudson and Newburgh

Don't let the name fool you. This coffee shop also serves up a mean hot chocolate, in both locations, the chocolatey concoction is made with dark fudge and milk — but no whipped cream. If you like white and dark chocolate, try a combination of both in the "Zebra" hot chocolate. 



The Alternative Baker


This shop's Belgian hot chocolate uses ganache made from Boice Brothers heavy cream and Callebaut chocolate rather than cocoa powder, and leaves off the whipped cream. Specialties: an Italian version that’s popular in winter, Caffe Ciocolatte combines half hot chocolate and half coffee. 



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Godiva Chocolatier at Woodbury Common Premium Outlets

Central Valley

This chocolate maker sells numerous chocolate candies along with cups of hot dark chocolate with the option of whipped cream. Specialty: Godiva’s version is made with cocoa powder that’s 72-percent dark chocolate, but we’re told it doesn’t taste bitter. 


Last Chance Cheese & Antiques Café


This popular cheese shop/café also sells 30 to 40 different chocolates. The owners serve traditional hot chocolate, a spiced version, and “gourmet” blends. Specialties: butterscotch hot chocolate with butterscotch Schnapps, hot chocolate with an edible caramel spoon, and hot chocolate with an edible marshmallow stick. 


Lucky Chocolates


Although this shop is under new ownership, the chocolate destination is still serving stellar hot cocoa. Examples include a sweetened dark version with organic sugar, whipped cream, and tiny chocolate stars; and vegan variations with almond milk. One of the special hot chocolates features a "shot" of melted dark chocolate topped with whipped cream and eaten with a spoon and pretzel.



Hot cocoa so thick....it turns to chocolate mousse if you put it in the fridge 😍

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Oliver Kita Chocolates


This chocolate emporium sells a European hot drink made from its organic dark chocolate and steamed milk. “It’s seriously intense and doesn’t need whipped cream,” says Kita. Specialty: order the hot chocolate with a store-made marshmallow dipped in its chocolate. 



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Emack & Bolio's 


This is a sweet tooth's paradise. Not only does this shop serve homemade hot chocolate, made with hot fudge and steamed milk, but it also cranks out ice cream, smoothies, pastries, and handmade chocolates. 



Verdigris Tea & Chocolate Bar


Both shops sell traditional hot chocolate and variations. Specialties: Mexican is a spicier blend with some kick, says owner Kim Bach; her new “Angelina” tastes like melted ganache and was inspired by the Parisian shop, Angelina, where Proust and Coco Chanel are said to have rubbed shoulders with a fashion-forward clientele. 

Related: 6 Cozy Drinks to Sip Through Hudson Valley Winters

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