Shanghai's best hot chocolates

The most decadent mugs of liquid gold to get you through the winter

Photograph: courtesy Hooked
Hot chocolate makes winter worth it, and there are plenty of great versions around town. From lusciously thick and guilt-inducing to classic and toasty marshmallow-topped, here are some of Shanghai's best cups of cocoa.

Lost Bakery
Photograph: Yang Xiaozhe

Lost Bakery

This absolutely indulgent cup from Lost Bakery (45RMB) is so thick that you might need to swap our sips for spoonfuls. It's an old family recipe from bakery director Nicolas Raud's grandfather's pastry shop in France: milk and cream infused with fresh vanilla bean and tonka bean, then stirred with a more 58 percent cocoa Oricao than you could dream of. For that little extra something, spike it with a shot of Baileys or Kahlua for an extra 10RMB.



hoF
Photograph: Yang Xiaozhe

hoF

The chocolate drinks menu at hoF offers perhaps the best variety in the city, with multiple hot chocolates for all you cocoa snobs and enthusiasts. For traditionalists, the creamy hot chocolate (38RMB) combines warm milk foam with a full-bodied 65 percent cocoa that's just the right amount of sweet.

Ocean Grounds
Photograph: courtesy Ocean Grounds
Photograph: courtesy Ocean Grounds

Ocean Grounds

Things get extra sinful at Ocean Grounds with the Double Trouble hot chocolate (36RMB) combines both cocoa powder and chocolate syrup for an uber-chocolately treat. Try the Mexican mocha (39RMB), which is hot chocolate plus coffee, or your standard hot chocolate (32RMB).

Diner
Photograph: courtesy Diner

Diner

If you're feeling real naughty, pop into to Diner for the XXL Hot Chocolate Bowl (48RMB), which is about as big as your face. The best part is that it comes topped with mammoth marshmallows that have gotten a nice toasting from a flame torch, making them gooey on the inside and charred on the outside.

Bread etc
Photograph: courtesy Bread etc

Bread etc

The foam-art capped hot chocolate at Bread etc is made from a healthy dose of Weiss chocolate blended with frothy milk, and comes in two sizes for your sipping pleasure (small 30RMB; large 35RMB). Pair it with a chewy, crazy-good French financier for an even better tea time treat.

Kommune
Photograph: courtesy Kommune

Kommune

Definitely one of the biggest hot chocolates about town, and certainly the most playful, this giant mug from Kommune (55RMB) comes complete with a big chocolate marshmallow. This long-time Tianzifang bar and restaurant is invariably packed on the weekends when punters flock to the terrace, even in winter. Forget about the outside chill as you dip a giant chocolate ball into a piping hot mug of milk to make this superb drink.

Angelina
Photograph: Yang Xiaozhe

Angelina

Iconic tea house Angelina has been pleasing Parisians with its fancy French pastries and cakes since 1903, especially renowned for its hot chocolate. Le chocolat chaud l’Africain (68RMB) does not disappoint, so thick you'll struggle to pour it from the little white jug (and thus served with a spoon). Order some macarons on the side and feel whisked away to the boulevards of Paris à la Coco Chanel.

Hooked
Photograph: courtesy Hooked

Hooked

You may not immediately think hot chocolate when you hear the name Hooked, but their version of the classic beverage is more than worthy of a place on this list. White and dark Belgian chocolate mixed with homemade coconut cream, toasted marshmallows and an assortment of nuts and grated chocolate sprinkled on top make this a fantastic option for those of us who don't fancy drinking despite being at Found 158.

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