Whipping Up Cocoa Creativity

By Karen Fashana

Published on | Last Updated

Sometimes the only way to shake off that lake effect chill in your bones is to warm up from the inside. Coffee and warm boozy drinks are the answer for some but for those looking for an any-time-of-day chocolate rush, hot cocoa is the beverage of choice. For the purists who crave a traditional yet tasty cocoa, sure, we have plenty of places serving up the classic version. For those looking for someone to whip up a little creativity in a cup with frothy additions, unique ingredients and sprinkles of this and that, we’ve rounded up five spots around town who are crushing the cocoa game. 

Khari’s Cafe

128 Fargo Avenue, Buffalo

Located in the old Tipico space at Fargo and Jersey on the city’s West Side, this newcomer to the café scene has a 12 oz. hot chocolate made with frothed milk, topped with whipped cream and a chocolate drizzle to boot.

Lancaster Coffee Company

24 Central Avenue, Lancaster

They’re the anchor in the village of Lancaster and they’re serving up a white hot chocolate this winter that’s worth the drive. Add a shot of raspberry to crank up its deliciousness to an 11.

The Intersection Cafe

100 Elmwood Avenue, Buffalo

Head to Allentown for the Heidi Special. Warm up with their hot chocolate that adds a unique twist – it’s spiced with ginger and cayenne!

Taste Bistro & Coffee Bar

634 Main Street, East Aurora

Your favorite toast spread is now the star in this unique cocoa option. Their “Totally Real Taste Beverage Science Team,” as they refer to themselves, has been working to master a Nutella Hot Cocoa…and they’ve succeeded! Topped with their Butter Pecan whipped cream, this brings East Aurora’s cocoa game to new heights. 

Alethea’s Chocolates

8301 Main Street, Williamsville 

If you thought this Williamsville chocolatier’s sponge candy was divine, try their orange chocolate hot cocoa steamer! This homemade recipe calls steamed milk and their own blend of cocoa. It’s topped off with fresh whipped cream (no squirts from a can here!), orange chocolate shavings and an orange Orinoco Truffle on the side!

Karen Fashana headshot

Karen Fashana

Lifelong Buffalonian with a crazy passion for this city. My job as the Senior Director of Marketing at Visit Buffalo Niagara is a match made in heaven. Go Bills!