Warm Up to Winter with a Hot Beverage
As the weather turns colder and our noses turn pink, a cup of hot chocolate can warm you up like the coziest of blankets in front of a warm fire. Whether topped with marshmallows or whipped cream, this beverage is a staple among many in the cold Michigan months.
We polled our readers on the best spots to snag a hot cup of chocolatey goodness and have listed the best of the best. We are also on board with the latest beverage craze: hot cocoa bombs. Read on to find out what they are, and where you can find them in Kalamazoo:
HOT COCOA BOMBS
What is a Hot Cocoa Bomb?
Hot chocolate or hot cocoa bombs are balls of chocolate, typically filled with cocoa and marshmallows.
The bombs are placed in a mug, with hot milk poured over the top to make a delicious, chocolatey drink. Part of the fun is just watching them melt in your cup before consuming.
These treats are very popular in Kalamazoo now, so we recommend calling ahead to confirm availability. Also, flavors may rotate daily so verify your favorites are in stock before heading out.
Here’s where you can snag some locally:
Flavors: classic hot chocolate, made with homemade hot chocolate mix & homemade marshmallows.
310 N Drake Rd, Kalamazoo, MI 49009
Flavors: vanilla cocoa, vanilla chai tea, vanilla cappuccino, vanilla peppermint, peanut butter, peppermint cocoa, milk chocolate
Schultz’s Treat Street
3023 Oakland Drive, Kalamazoo, MI 49008
Flavors: double chocolate, white chocolate chai, white chocolate cappuccino
The Garden Griddle
217 E. Michigan Ave. Paw Paw, MI 49079
Flavors: milk chocolate, dark chocolate, white chocolate, Mexican hot chocolate, peppermint, chai latte
HOT CHOCOLATE SHOPS
Is it Hot Chocolate or Hot Cocoa?
According to beverage aficionados, there is a difference: hot cocoa is typically thinner and made with cocoa powder, while hot chocolate is made from melted chocolate and is thicker due to the cocoa butter in its ingredients.
Whether you prefer one recipe over another or use the terms interchangeably, the Kalamazoo area offers a variety of restaurants and cafes to pick up your favorite chocolate beverage. Our readers picked these spots as their favorites:
Local Restaurants & Shops
101 S Kalamazoo Mall, Kalamazoo
Cherri owned a fine arts gallery for over thirty years; her love of chocolate and art is evident in the turtles, salted caramels, and other decadent options.
7642 S Westnedge Ave, Portage, MI 49002
Although known for their vast tea selection, ChocolaTea also serves sandwiches, quiche, and desserts (macarons being a favorite of many). ChocolaTea also uses Michigan made homemade marshmallows in their drinks.
Confections With Convictions
116 W Crosstown Pkwy #101, Kalamazoo, MI 49008
This shop is proudly “Pure Michigan” with sourcing the majority of its ingredients locally from farmers. They also make all confections by hand using organic, fair-trade chocolate.
213 E Frank St, Kalamazoo, MI 49007
Factory Coffee’s space is truly unique. Within the Reality Factory, Factory Coffee shares space with two other retailers: 1977 Mopeds and Grayling Ceramics.
401 E Michigan Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49007
This local favorite for hot chocolate is also a full-service restaurant. They support sustainable, local food and artisans of craft food.
Mezzo Coffee House
100 W Allegan St, Otsego, MI 49075
Mezzo Coffee House serves breakfast and lunch, in addition to their beverages. After enjoying a hearty helping of hot chocolate, peruse their marketplace for locally made gifts and unique items.
The Local Grind Coffee House
117 S Grove St, Delton, MI 49046
Located in Delton, this restaurant prides itself on great coffee and baked treats.
Chains / Multiple Locations
This mix of local and national chains brought in a number of votes from readers as well:
- BIGGBY (Make sure to check out their Steamers for kids too)
- Dunkin’ Donuts
- Water Street Coffee
- Circle K or Speedway gas stations
Did we miss one of your favorite places to get hot chocolate? If so, let us know in the comment section below and we’ll add them to this list.
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