FLATIRON — City Bakery’s annual hot chocolate festival has arrived, offering a unique flavor for every day in February, including ones with beer and bourbon.
The festival’s lineup this year includes a hot chocolate infused with pistachio called Hi Ho Pistachio, a creamy stout hot chocolate made with real beer and one called Ode to the Polar Bear, made with white chocolate, espresso and a dash of white pepper, according to Maury Rubin, owner of City Bakery.
“The reason people love City Bakery’s hot chocolate is because even after all this time, in its 22nd year, it’s still completely special,” Rubin said.
The new and interesting flavors, which also include Cinnamon Rum Hot Chocolate made with Vietnamese cinnamon, are what keep people coming back each year, said Rubin, who noted that the bakery sold 500 cups of hot chocolate per day last Feburary.
“It’s the real thing and it’s really good," he said.
In addition to the Cinnamon Rum Hot Chocolate, other warm spiked drinks include the Creamy Stout Hot Chocolate and the Bourbon Hot Chocolate.
Returning favorites this February include Ginger Hot Chocolate, Chili Pepper Hot Chocolate and the Sunken Treasure Hot Chocolate made with melted chocolate truffles and caramel coins, which are laid under the hot chocolate as a finishing touch.
The hot chocolate costs $5 for a regular cup, $3 for a shot and $2 extra to add the bakery’s homemade marshmallows on top, Rubin said.
Rubin also promised to dole out free hot chocolate to all customers at City Bakery, at 3 W. 18th St. at Fifth Avenue, on any day in February that snow accumulates 10 inches or more in Central Park.
"February is a long sleepless month for me," said Rubin, who noted that he spends hours infusing the unique flavors into the chocolate.
“It's all about the recipes,” he said.