The City Bakery Hot Chocolate Festival kicked off officially this month, but technically it started the last weekend of January. That’s when I went. I couldn’t wait. I keep saying I’m not a big fan of dessert, but since last month, all I want to eat are sweets. I’m not sure why. I think it may have to do with the fact that I joined a gym. My appetite has been insatiable ever since. Perhaps I need to quit. Or maybe I have to stop watching Food Network while I’m on the bike.
Hot chocolate flavors change everyday, and on the last Sunday of January, it was ginger. Overpowered by the richness of the liquid chocolate, the ginger got a little lost. It didn’t really matter though, because for me, a bowl of hot chocolate ($5.50) at City Bakery is all about the dreamy housemade marshmallow on top. Warmed from the chocolatey bath, the delicate marshmallow melts in your mouth. The hot chocolate, by the way, is never too hot; not so great for hot chocolate drinking, but perfect for marshmallow-eating. Too hot and it would be bye bye for the fluffy white soul.
A visit to City Bakery isn’t complete, however, without at least one or two pastries. The Pretzel Croissant ($3.75), a whole wheat croissant covered in sesame seeds, is everyone’s favorite. It even has its own website. I love the crusty salty outside and the soft feathery layers inside, but personally, I find the innards a little bland, just like a pretzel. When I was eating it last week, I had a sudden craving for mustard. I guess they got the pretzel part down pat.
My favorite, as of now, is the Apple Lemon Tart ($6). It’s bright, not too sweet, and has the thinnest flakiest crust. It seems light yet it’s still delicious; not an easy feat.
As for the thievery, they ran out of trays and I had to make two trips from the counter (where the cashier was) to a table. I told the cashier I would be back to get the rest of my order and she said it was fine. When I came back, a green tea ($1.25) I had ordered was gone. Weird, no? The cashier gladly made me a new one, but I thought it was strange someone would steal a tea. Desperate and thirsty times I guess. So keep your eyes on the prize at City Bakery. Next time, the thief may be more bold, he/she may be hungry.