I am somewhat partial to a hot chocolate and this time last year I started a bit of a mission to try and find the best hot chocolate in Norwich/Norfolk. I began posting on the Mumbler FB page where I’d been and what I thought of the hot chocolate and I had people messaging asking for recommendations and suggestions for places to go, so I thought it was time to make ‘the list’.
I must warn you, I am not after any old hot chocolate. I used to live in Queenstown, NZ, and there was a cafe called Patagonia where they sold THE MOST thick, chocolatey delicious hot chocolate I have ever tasted. I have been trying to find similar ever since and feel that now my memories are rose (or chocolate) tinted that I shall never be able to do so.
BUT…now the weather is turning and my thoughts are increasingly turning to where I can sup a delicious chocolatey beverage, here are the places I’ve tried so far.
If you have an suggestions or favourites let me know and I’ll be MORE than happy to verify it for you 😀 Contact Katrin at Mumbler.
Cafe Britannia, Britannia Rd, Norwich NR1 4LU
Made with real chocolate buttons, you can choose from dark, white or milk chocolate. I went with milk but think I’d prefer the dark chocolate for that real chocolatey hit. A generous amount of cream and chocolate flakes make it an all-round good hot chocolate. 6/10
(Room for buggies and they have baby changing facilities)
Cupcakes and Bubbles, 5 Timber Hill, Norwich NR1 3JZ (I think this place has now closed?)
Tucked away up Timber Hill, Cupcakes and Bubbles provided a tasty hot chocolate with the welcome addition of marshmallows. A little on the sweet side for my liking but tasty nonetheless. 6/10
(There are stairs to get down into the cafe part so be aware if you’re taking a buggy. We managed but it was quiet so didn’t feel we were getting in anyone’s way.)
Whitlingham Cafe, Whitlingham Country Park, Whitlingham Lane, Trowse, NR14 8TR
A great stop off if you’re visiting Whitlingham Country Park. The hot chocolate was a little too sweet for me, not chocolatey enough. 5/10
(I seem to remember baby changing facilities in the visitor centre part of the cafe, limited room for buggies within the cafe).
Figbar, St John Maddermarket, Norwich NR2 1DN
This is the closest I’ve found flavour wise to the Patagonia hot chocolate I had. Delicious and chocolatey, not too milky and not too sweet. No cream or marshmallows but it absolutely does not need them, definitely delivers an awesome chocolate hit. 8/10
(Not much room for buggies in the cafe and there’s stairs, so not very toddler friendly, but they have high chairs in the cafe and don’t forget, you can also pick up Figbar treats and hot chocolate from their market stall).
Alchemista, St Gregorys Alley, Norwich NR2 1ER
We visited Alchemista shortly after it opened last year and I was very pleasantly surprised by their hot chocolate. A good amount of chocolate flavour, not too sweet or milky. I’d definitely like to go back for a resample! 7.5/10
(Limited room downstairs for buggies and they have lovely toilets with baby changing facilities).
Aroma, Upper King St, Norwich NR3 1RL
A teeny tiny little coffee bar on Upper King St that also do nice sausage rolls! The hot chocolate is made with real chocolate and was tasty but maybe a little too sweet for me, and slightly lacking that full chocolatey hit. Still a good hot chocolate though. 6.5/10
Prima Rosa, Lower St, Salhouse, Norwich NR13 6AD
I visited Prima Rosa a while ago with a friend (Hi Sarah!) and it is a cafe/shop FILLED with knicknackery, great if you want a little browse for gifts, not so great if you have any small child with you that wants to touch everything.
The hot chocolate came with fresh cream and marshmallows and wasn’t too sweet, possibly still too much on the sugary side and not chocolatey enough for me though. 6/10
(Not much room for buggies with all the knick-nacks, but they did have a changing mat in their toilet facilities).
Macarons & More, The Royal Arcade, Norwich NR2 1NQ
Ooft, what a backdrop to drink this takeaway! And they kindly put a bit of my hot chocolate into a little cup so Mini Mumbler could have her own. Delicious and chocolatey, and I seem to remember this one was more on the bitter side than sweet side. 7.5/10
(Nowhere to sit inside but if it’s a dry day I highly recommend heading up to Castle Gardens, above Castle Mall, as it has benches, lots of Norwich as a view and a small play area).
Costa, Tesco Extra, Blue Boar Ln, Norwich NR7 8AB
You can tell how long ago this one was by the fact the Teeny One was still Teeny. But oh, Costa! What a disappointing excuse for a hot chocolate this is. Far too sugary sweet and no real chocolate flavour to speak of. Nice pastry but I will not be returning for a hot chocolate any time soon. 2/10
(Lots of room for buggies/trollies within the cafe area, plus Tesco has a baby changing room and I seem to remember even supplied a few spare nappies in case you’re caught short!).
The texture of this hot chocolate was off-putting for me from the start as it was a weird kind of frothy, but the more I stirred it round and started drinking the more the flavour of the chocolate came through and the chocolatey thickness improved. A good chocolate hit and not too sweet. 7/10
(Lots of room for buggies and very friendly staff).
Kofra, Sainsburys Centre, UEA
We visited the Sainsburys Centre on one of the few rubbish weather days in the Summer holiday, so a hot chocolate felt very justified. Their hot chocolate (and brownie!) was REALLY good. Very chocolatey and quite thick, a definite contender for best in Norwich. 8/10
(Quite a bit of seating and room for buggies, the Sainsburys Centre is definitely worth a look round and the UEA lake walk features in the top Norwich Walks list here)
John Lewis, All Saints Green, Norwich NR1 3LX
You might be able to guess the time of year I tried the ones in John Lewis!! A lot of cream but a hot chocolate that is more sweet than chocolatey, unfortunately. Still an enjoyable hot chocolate, but not the chocolate hit I’m after. 5.5/10
(Lots of room for buggies in the John Lewis cafe and the staff are always so nice and helpful!)
Another disappointingly sweet rather than chocolatey hot chocolate from IKEA – I do LOVE their pastries though so all is forgiven. I would definitely choose to have a cup of tea with the pastry if I go again! 2/10
(The click and collect IKEA is good for a bit of a mooch and there’s room for buggies in the cafe area – we really need a REAL IKEA though!!)
Mindoro Desserts, 1 Westlegate, NR1 3LT
A DIY hot chocolate! You’re given all the components to make it up yourself: hot frothy milk, chocolate on a stick, cream and marshmallows. I’m pretty sure they had dark, milk and white chocolate to choose from. I went for dark and it wasn’t too sweet or sickly. 6/10
Walsingham Farm Shop at Norwich Market
I visited the Market on a REALLY cold day at the end of January and a hot chocolate was just what I needed. They have 4 hot chocolate choices and I chose the 70% classic. I always prefer hot chocolates made with actual chocolate and this hefty choc buttons made a good one. There was quite a lot of sediment at the bottom of the cup, but I wondered whether this was the fault of the freezing cold weather. I might need a re-try! 🙂 6.5/10
So it seems I have tried more hot chocolates than I thought – ha!
Do get in touch if you have a recommendation for an awesome hot chocolate 🙂