Perhaps, one of the most romantic evenings out in Florence. This cozy little corner caffé, although technically a bar, is really more chocolate salon. Yes they also serve coffee and cocktails – but tea and chocolate is the specialty; and really, it’s all about the chocolate.

Young couples cozy up at little round tables tucked into the various nooks and crannies enjoying pots of tea. Intimate, without question. Passionate writers would feel perfectly at home. Sofas lined along the walls provide room for larger groups, but the space is so small, that many reserve the tables in advance.

Tourists rarely venture this deep into San Frediano, the last remaining neighborhood in the historic center which still feels authentic. But for any chocoholic, it’s worth the mission.

Yes, the price tag is steep, starting at 5 euros for a mug, but considering these could guest star in the next Supersize Me, the price becomes more reasonable. And the flavor, more than makes up for it.

There are more famous hot chocolates in Florence (Gilli, Rivoire) but there aren’t better. And if you want to sit down, you’re going to pay even more at those establishments.  At Hemingway uou have your choice of white, milk or bittersweet chocolate – each clearly marked with its percentage of cocoa solids. Then pick amongst topping and additions, whipped cream won’t set you back much, a shot of rum costs a little more. Many hot chocolates in Italy have the same dark intensity, and heavy tongue-coating texture, but often fall flat at the finish; not so at Hemingway, where the chocolate has a deep richness and complexity that lingers long.

Come with a group and you can indulge in a bowl of hot chocolate fondue and platters of sparkling fresh fruit and assorted dry cookies to dip into the molten chocolate. Convivial family style food at its most indulgent and decadent – doubly so given the 30 euro price, which, even given the quality of the chocolate and the abundance of goodies to dip, seems steep.

A small pastry case offers a limited selection of pastries as well as cookies and filled chocolates from an award-winning artisan producer – they are more of an afterthought, hardly necessary after the steaming mug of chocolate

Signature Dishes: Hot Chocolate, Chocolate Fondue
Get It!: Bittersweet Hot Chocolate

Piazza Piattellina, 9, Florence. tel: +39 055 284781. Closed Monday.

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