I had forgotten I took these pictures at the Manhattan outpost of Cocoa Bar back in March. I made record time in a cab - 20 minutes from LaGuardia to LES, and had dinner at Frankies 17, at 17 Clinton St, and took a short walk over to Cocoa Bar, which is at 21 Clinton St. Perfect date trajectory, if ever you find yourself on the Lower East Side.
It's a pity I didn't take any pictures of the food at Frankies 17 (too dark, plus, was too hungry and therefore occupied with eating). If you do go there, definitely try their cheeses. They always have a great list of cheeses, mostly Italian, and sometimes contraband(!) from which you can pick 3 to try. Map below:
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If you do go, don't forget to use their tiny bathroom. The restaurant itself is very narrow, and the tiny bathroom at the back of the store maximizes space with a sink no larger than a 2 Liter tupperware container. I totally love how the metal pipes were exposed (obvi cause there's no place to hide them).
I hear Cocoa Bar resembles a bustling coffee shop during the day, but when we went, there was only one table that was occupied. There was, however, a constant stream of neighbors and regulars who were dropping in to say hi to Bahman Soltani, the owner. From what I could tell, they were grabbing a quick cup of coffee and then moving on to their main entertainment for the night; at the same time sharing their evening plans with Soltani, at the same time finding out what else was going on in the neighborhood.
Hot chocolate, more like liquified chocolate, with generous chocolate shavings on the rim, made personally by Soltani. It's a pity the cup wasn't any bigger, because it is everything you imagine a rich hot chocolate aught to taste like.
We also got a hot toddy, which mostly just tasted like whisky - the best!
I think this is some sort of chocolate truffle cake covered in white chocolate ganache. The inside is dark chocolate truffle.