Mon-Wed, 7:30am-9pm; Thu-Fri, 7:30am-10pm; Sat, 8am-10pm; Sun, 9am-9pm
N, R at 23rd St.
American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
In the former home of dearly departed Fleur de Sel, Manhattan’s first outlet of the New Hampshire–based chocolatier L.A. Burdick also marks a homecoming for the brand, which was founded as a wholesaler in Brooklyn in the eighties. Like Burdick’s other locations in the Northeast, the store doubles as a café and a gourmet shop with a wall of shelves displaying attractive gift boxes, a line of coffee beans, and specialty items like whole cocoa pods. Signature chocolate mice (and penguins too) share a case toward the back with à la carte squares in interesting flavors like Earl Grey and lemon pepper, while packaged chocolate bars and other goodies overwhelm at a central island. Small tables line a wooden bench that runs the length of the dining area. Pastries are excellent, even chocolate-free ones, such as the crumbly linzer torte filled with tangy raspberry jam and topped with sweet whipped cream, but those jonesing to sample the cocoa wares can stick to a self-styled chocolate tasting that includes four bonbons. Frothy and creamy hot chocolate is a must-have and available in dark, milk, and white variations, which can be blended; a black-and-white mix proves especially tasty.Recommended Dishes
Chocolate tasting plate, $5; Linzer tort, $4; hot chocolate, $4.50