Top 5 Hot Chocolate Spots in Cincinnati

’Tis the season for chocolate.

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  1. Stop by Maverick Chocolate Company’s newly minted storefront in Rookwood Commons, or their original store and factory in OTR, to try their house-made hot drinking chocolate. The 65% dark chocolate drink is made directly from their chocolate bars, making it a very rich but not too sweet cold-weather treat. Enjoy by the cup for $5, or buy a 6-serving bag for your next holiday gathering for $20. Hours vary by location, 2651 Edmondson Rd., Hyde Park, (513) 834-8369, 129 W. Elder St., OTR, (513) 381-0561,
  2. Aroma’s Java and Gelato may specialize in coffee drinks and the Italian-style ice cream, but this West Side shop has not neglected their hot chocolate menu. Choose from Caramel Brownie, York, and Buckeye flavors, or simply stick to the rich, steamy original. Monday–Friday 6 a.m.–9 p.m., Saturday 7:30 a.m.–5 p.m., closed Sunday, 6407 Bridgetown Rd., (513) 574-3000,
  3. For an adult version of your favorite childhood drink, head to the Blind Lemon. Their Milky Way cocktail is a decadent mixture of Amaretto, Crème de Cacao, and Hot Chocolate, topped with whipped cream. This stuff will make the store-bought powder of your youth a fond, but thankfully distant, memory. Hours vary, 936 Hatch St., (513) 241-3885,
  4. Visit the Chocolate Bee, home of businesses Chocolats Latour and Bee Haven Honey, to choose from three unique flavors of fair-trade cocoa made from 70% dark chocolate. Brew-it-yourself mixes come in smoked chili, lavender sea salt, and orange spice, making the perfect gift for your classiest friend or eccentric aunt. Bonus: throw in a handmade earthenware mug for a $30 sure-to-impress gift set. Wednesday–Friday 12–6 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 11 a.m.–5 p.m., closed Monday and Tuesday, 4037 Hamilton Ave., Northside, (513) 954-0997,
  5. Need a boost to get through the holiday season? Try spiked hot chocolate at 1215 Wine Bar & Coffee Lab. Add Baileys, Kahlua, Frangelico, Rum, or Whiskey to Mexican cocoa — spiced with cinnamon and cayenne— or as a bonus to a cup of the classic. Hours vary, 1215 Vine St., OTR, (513) 429-5745,


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