Willy Wonka Goes Sideways: A Decadent Bar Sets the Standard


Spanish aristocrats used to drink their chocolate boiled in wine, the concoction spiced and sweetened, before the severely less indulgent Brits figured out how to produce boring bars in the mid 19th century. Park Slope’s Chocolate Room restores the decadent chocolate-wine combination—though not as a single beverage—by pairing vinos with a long list of homemade desserts and confections, including espresso chocolate flan ($6.50), chocolate crepes ($6.50), and hot cocoa made with pure Tahitian vanilla ($4.50, and worth it). Yes, it’s an orgy of chocolate, set against a pleasant backdrop of candles, exposed-brick walls, and borderline “saxy” lite music. The drink menu, which is set to expand in the next few weeks, is equally appealing: Glasses of wine, like Moscato d’Asti, a dessert wine that married owners Naomi and Jon recommend with their fruitier concoctions, run in the $5-to-$7 range, and beers include Brooklyn Brewery’s Chocolate Stout ($4.25). The aphrodisiac-like alchemy of chocolate and wine has worked, proving correct the couple’s hunch that there were people like them who’d rather go out for dessert and audible conversation than stake out a spot at a noisy bar. Try a glass of red with the chocolate fondue ($12), which comes with homemade marshmallows so obscenely good that not even the most outlandish royals could have imagined them.

This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on March 29, 2005

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