Hot Chocolate Quest Continues

Apostrophe hot chocolate
Photo: Mia Dhillon

After all the excitement of Fleet River Bakery’s Hot Chocolate festival, I needed more hot chocolate. I tried Fleet’s ordinary hot chocolate but found it milky and weak. My quest for the best hot chocolate in London had to continue.

After all, the weather is cold.  Hot chocolate is warm. The sky is dark and depressing. Chocolate helps release endorphins to counteract this.

It’s a win-win situation 😉

Various locations, London

Image from:

I stopped by Apostrophe, a London-based coffee chain. I have to confess that the sign annoys me. It features an apostrophe which is clearly drunk as it sun-bathes on top of the “o”. I want to see a proper apostrophe, not an “accent on taste”.

But one shouldn’t judge a book by a cover, or a coffee chain by its sign. Apostrophe’s hot chocolate is legendary. It’s thick. So thick that it’s like chocolate soup. So thick that I ate it with a spoon. So thick that  I “ate” it. So thick that one hot chocolate is a whole meal. And the pain au chocolat was dessert.

Photo: Mia Dhillon

I also sampled their Christmas chilli mocha, but it’s a whole different class of drink – ie. it’s actually a drink. The warming effect of chilli was definitely appreciated, but I’m a still a hot chocolate girl.


32 Great Queen Street, London, WC2B 5AA


In between Covent Garden and Holborn, Salt is in a convenient location for the discerning hot chocolate enthusiast to seek their chocolate hit. Salt’s hot chocolate is also thick and rich, but nowhere near as pudding-like as Apostrophe’s. Which is a really good thing if you just want to drink chocolate. It’s not too sweet, it’s got a depth of flavour and it’s just delightful.

Manon Café
Various locations, London

Manon Café
Manon Café
Tempted? Don't be.
Tempted? Don’t be.

I’ll say straight up – their chocolate was rubbish. They’ve teamed up with Leonidas chocolate. Apparently this is some kind of exclusive, Belgian chocolate brand. Ignore the marketing spiel.

Do you remember as a kid when you got given a pack of chocolate santas for Christmas? Or a pack of chocolate rabbits at Easter? How you’d gleefully bite off their heads, then devour the rest fairly promptly? Do you remember what that chocolate tasted like? I do. I remember. Maybe I was just a very discerning child but I never actually finished these packs of chocolates. They have that taste of cheap, generic chocolate, made in a factory, to be moulded into whatever theme is in season. The kind that leave a strange after-taste and make you really wish you hadn’t eaten them.

This is what the Leonidas hot chocolate tasted like. Their free chocolate was not much better either. Maybe the coffee is good?!


If anyone has any hot chocolate recommendations, please email me.

Author: Phoebe Amoroso

Phoebe Amoroso is a Tokyo-based reporter, multimedia journalist and storyteller. Hailing from the UK, she moved to Japan in 2014 and has since been shouting about the country to all who will listen. She divides her time between covering breaking news and producing feature stories for TV; writing about everything from business and tech to food and travel; and guiding hungry visitors who want to sample the best of Japanese cuisine. When not working and/or eating, she can often be found running up a mountain or cycling by the sea.

4 thoughts on “Hot Chocolate Quest Continues”

  1. Best hot chocolate ever is in Edinburgh at ‘the chocolate tree’ (my favourite being the 65% single origin but there are so many different ones to choose from, and if you are really indulgent then the Spanish chocolate with churros) However, went for coffee today and the person I was with had a really good looking hot chocolate, at Mimi’s Deli in Oval

    If you ever need a fellow chocolate fiend in london to taste with let me know!

    Sarah (Harry and Janna’s friend!)

    1. I really want to go to Edinburgh but I’ve never had the chance! And now there’s another reason to go!

      But chocolate recommendation in London sounds good! Hot choc date in the New Year? 🙂

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