The NYC Chocolate Project: Cocoa Store

Located at 15 E 18th Street the Cocoa Store is easily the smallest chocolate shop that I’ve been in. What they lack in space, they make up in creative use of that space. The walls are lined with some of the priciest chocolate I’ve had, and the jewelry-style display case makes their limited selection of truffles feel extra special.

The Cocoa Store in NYCNYC Chocolate Shops

Cocoa Store is a “retailer of prestigious chocolate brands from around the world”, and carries primarily five chocolate brands: Amedei, Domori, Castronovo, Dick and Taylor, and Harper Macaw.

You can buy single truffles from the display case, or chocolate bars and collections from behind. I definitely recommend the miniatures collection in front of the register, in this case your best bet is to acquaint yourself with the flavors of the chocolate offered before committing to a whole bar or collection.

Cocoa Store NYC register

Out of all the chocolate shops that I’ve been to, the Cocoa Store offers the most intense (and expensive) chocolate. If you, or someone you know, are hardcore chocolate connoisseurs – the kind that know the bean location and cocoa concentration of their chocolate – then you and they will love this place. Especially dark chocolate fans.

Initially I was sort of skeptical of the prices I saw at the Cocoa Store, however a little digging proved that the chocolates offered here are the real deal – they’re boutique chocolates with a world-wide following. Amedei’s single plantation chocolate, Chuao, is considered by some very influential chocolatiers to be possibly the greatest chocolate in the world. Food & Wine’s Pete Wells wrote an excellent article on the chocolatiers here, it’s well worth reading whether or not you’re a chocolate fan.

Cocoa Store NYC display case

Domori, another specialty chocolate, was founded in 1997 and are credited with restoring the cultivation of Criollo beans. In 2002, Gianluca Franzoni opened a plantation in Venezuela where he is cultivating varieties of Criollo that are on the verge of extinction.

Castronovo, owned by one of few female chocolate makers in America, Denise Castronovo, offers sustainable American craft chocolate. “Castronovo sources the cacao beans and contributes to providing an income for indigenous people who live off of the rainforest.  The prestigious awards she has received, including 7 World Final International Chocolate Awards, and 8 Academy of Chocolate Awards from London are just the result of her lifelong commitment.” – Cocoa Store

Amedei Chocolates NYC Cocoa Store

Dick and Taylor source their cocoa from around the world, using only organic cocao and organic cane sugar. With options like Black Fig, 72% Maple Coconut, and a limited release Vietnam Tien Giang with tasting notes of spice cake, apricot, and almond butter, you really can’t go wrong trying at least one. Each 2oz bar runs about $8.50, and ranks as a small, affordable luxury. Plus, the packaging is absolutely beautiful.

Harper Macaw chocolates are sourced from two of Earth’s most threatened biomes – Brazil’s Atlantic and Amazon rainforests. Their mission? Turning chocolate into a force for tropical reforestation. You clearly see their inspiration in the creative and eye-catching design of their chocolates.

Harper Macaw Chocolates Cocoa Store NYC

On my first visit I ended up spending roughly $80 on chocolates – I had a few pralines and truffles, an Amedei Toscano Red Chocolate Bar, Domori Napolitains D-Fusion Sleeve, a Single Origins Sleeve, a Domori Pret a Porter Chocolate Gift Bag, and a Criollo sleeve.

The sleeves are the best way to familiarize yourself with the varying degrees of cocoa content, bean sources and flavors, while the chocolate gift bag is great for gifting and easing yourself into the serious and intense flavors offered. The bag itself seems to be themed around hazelnuts with exception of the Rum and Chestnut ‘Cuneesi’ Pralines – which utilize chestnut cream and Agrimontana chestnuts liquor instead.

Amedei Chocolates in NYC

My favorite was the Amedei Toscano Red Chocolate Bar, which features a minimum of 70% cocoa content, and dried red fruit (strawberry, cherry, and raspberry). I always love the marriage of tart and sweet, and while the dark chocolate here isn’t exacting teeming with sugar, it’s still beautifully done.

Amedei Toscano Red

After doing my little bit of googling research into the brands sold at the Cocoa Store, I really feel much more enthusiastic about this little shop. You’d be hardpressed to find brands like Amedei elsewhere and I only know of one other place – 2beans – that carries Domori. In terms of access, the Cocoa Store is part of what makes the city so great – that we have the ability to hop on the train or bus and are able to access luxury chocolates, possibly the greatest chocolates, quite easily.

Cocoa Store
15 E 18th Street
New York, NY 10003
(212) 982-8005

https://cocoastore.nyc/

Sweet Satisfaction with HERSHEY & Duane Reade!

DiscLike most New Yorkers, I’m perpetually running around the city – which is why I rely so much on Duane Reade. I can count on being able to find whatever I need in a pinch. I’ll usually run in for some water, fuel (of a food-like nature), or a new beauty product that I’ve been dying to get my hands on and know that Duane Reade will definitely have in stock. However, most recently I have been enjoying HERSHEY’S BROOKSIDE Dark Chocolate Goji and Raspberry Flavors!

#DReadeHSY #shop

I have quite a few “favorite” Duane Reade locations – I mean, I love them all but some locations more than others really knock it out of the park for me. One of those locations is the Duane Reade right across the street from the Empire State Building. Despite the massive amounts of foot traffic from visitors and locals, I never ever have had to wait more than a couple minutes to check out.

My sister and I had a busy morning covering the opening of a new store in the city and stopped in for a treat on the way to our next destination. Our usual dark chocolate pick is HERSHEY’S BLISS Dark Chocolate, which I always pick up at Duane Reade – they always have them in stock and offer a great selection. But I have been enjoying BROOKSIDE Dark Chocolate Goji and Raspberry Flavors for a couple weeks now, and was determined to introduce my sister to it.

#DReadeHSY #shop

BROOKSIDE Dark Chocolate Goji and Raspberry Flavors is made with Goji fruit flavored centers as well as other exotic fruit flavors like raspberry. It has a bright sweet tart flavor that pairs perfectly with the dark chocolate – yum! I also love how they’re small pieces, I feel like it makes it a more portion-friendly treat.

#DReadeHSY #shop#DReadeHSY #shop

I literally walked up to the wall next to the registers, picked out my favorite BROOKSIDE Dark Chocolate and was checked out in under a couple minutes. I love that BROOKSIDE Dark Chocolate comes in a resealable package – it’s super convenient, and makes it perfect for when you’re on the go!

#DReadeHSY #shop