As Americans, I feel like we very often describe something as “European Style” as a euphemism. It either means that thing is classy and refined or, as in the case of my apartment’s “European Sized” washer-dryer, simply small. The hot chocolate at Dolcezza is certainly the former – but served in a rather American-sized portion.
The dark, glossy chocolate arrives spilling just over the edges of the cappuccino-sized mug, dribbling little trails down the outside, pooling in the saucer. It is aromatic with cinnamon and spices and has a substantial, silky mouthfeel without being quite as thick as the more shot-glass sized portions one sometimes gets. Accompanied by a warm, crispy churro, it is completely decadent without being overwhelmingly sugary. Though less-dense than some, the full six ounces was a bit too much for me to finish, I must admit, and could almost be split between two people.
Some fancy hot chocolates in town distinguish themselves by the addition of spicy elements or interesting “adult” ingredients (both of which I like) or piles of whipped cream and other toppings (which I generally could do without), but the Dolcezza version is simple and avoids taking the treat over-the-top.
It more clearly reminds me of the hot chocolates of my childhood, typically served from silver pots on trays of hotel room-service breakfasts in various now blurred-together Continental locales – and when it comes to hot chocolate, more like one’s childhood memories is generally better. Like cupcakes and grilled cheese sandwiches, hot chocolate is one of those nostalgia foods I waver on if adults should even consume at all – but when you make the nostalgia this appealing and delicious, it is certainly hard to write it off.