Review: York Cocoa House

takes us inside the chocolate-lover’s haven

Image: dave G-H

Image: dave G-H

Rating:  ★★★★☆

It’s turned chilly, and comfort food is on the cards. As there’s no better antidote to winter blues than a warm drink and a generous helping of something sweet, York Cocoa House is the perfect spot for raising frosty spirits.

York being the birthplace of Terry’s Chocolate Orange and Rowntree, the Cocoa House pays excellent homage to its chocolate antecedents: in a related piece of trivia, the site now home to Pizza Hut once saw Joseph Rowntree Senior take on George Cadbury and Lewis Fry as apprentices, back in 1858.

Opened in 2011, York Cocoa House celebrates the joy of chocolate in a diversity of ways.  With a luxurious selection of cakes, hot drinks, and biscuits, there’s plenty to satisfy even the sweetest tooth, such as a thickly-iced chocolate stout cake or a decadent caramel slice. Savoury dishes are flavoured with a subtle chocolate twist, including the chicken and pancetta bagel, dressed with a delicate chocolate pesto and balsamic sauce. Also available are stews, soups, sandwiches, and a barbecue chicken quesadilla which defies the conventions of where chocolate should belong.

Image: Amy Norton

Images: Amy Norton

Image: Amy Norton

Hot chocolate is the jewel in the studded crown of York Cocoa House: richly flavoured yet not overbearingly sweet, flavours range from classic, to boozy, to rose. Perfectly balancing an extravagant slice of cake is a light chocolate tea, or for a special occasion, choose afternoon hot chocolate with a selection of savoury dishes and scones.

There are also chocolate wares to take home, chocolate-making workshops to book for parties, and a chocolate library to provide some food for thought all of which would make great potential presents for the ones you love. All in all, the York Chocolate House will not fail to revive a cold traveller on a wintry afternoon, and is the ideal teatime location for those with a weakness for sweet treats.

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