Chocolate is magnificent in any form, but why settle for a quotidian chocolate chip cookie when our city offers so much more? From next-level soft serve to towering layer cakes, these are the most over-the-top, chock-full-of-chocolate dishes we could find.
Chocolate soft serve at Dominique Ansel Kitchen
Mad scientist pastry whiz Dominique Ansel has never been known for playing it safe with ingredient combinations. His latest flavor at his perpetually packed soft serve ice cream window is sure to inspire even longer lines: dark chocolate–olive oil. Topped with fig agrodolce, Maldon sea salt and more olive oil, it's a wonderful mix of salty and sweet.
137 7th Avenue S.; 212-242-5111
Mousse au chocolat at Le Coucou
This stunner has been on the menu at the buzzy Le Coucou since opening day and is one of its best-sellers. While it is a classic preparation using a mixture of two different Valrhona chocolates, it is finished off not with simple cocoa powder, but a crown of unsweetened chocolate shavings. The bitter topping is the perfect complement to the sweet, cloudlike mousse (and 100% more photogenic).
138 Lafayette Street; 212-271-4252
Chocolate milkshake at Empire Diner
This iconic Chelsea diner has undergone several transformations since opening in 1976, but with chef and proprietor John DeLucie at the helm now, the food is more luxe than ever. Save room for the chocolate milkshake, crafted by pastry chef Crystal Hanks, and made with rich chocolate ice cream, whole milk and big crunchy chunks of Oreo.
210 10th Avenue; 212-335-2277
Chocolate mousse at Fusco
Chef and restaurateur Scott Conant's first solo New York City restaurant in nearly a decade was worth the wait. His innovative take on sophisticated Italian cuisine is best displayed with his chocolate mousse. This architectural dessert is made even more unique with the addition of a crunchy praline base and a topping of chocolate glaze, Valrhona Caramelia chocolate and honey comb.
43 E. 20th Street; 212-777-5314
Voyage de Valrhona at Italienne
Chocoholics: Look no further than this Flatiron spot's "chocolate program" to satisfy even the deepest of cravings. This dessert features six housemade, single-origin chocolates accompanied with a tasting menu to make sure you don't miss a single flavor note. And if that's not enough? You can even request a wine pairing for each chocolate.
19 W. 24th Street; 212-600-5139
Comfort pastry at Kreuther Handcrafted Chocolate
An offshoot of white-tablecloth spot Gabriel Kreuther next door, this luxe chocolate shop also offers an array of sumptuous baked goods. The best of the bunch may be the "comfort pastry," made with a creamy quenelle of hazelnut dacquoise, milk chocolate chantilly and a crunchy praline base. A glass-enclosed workshop means you can watch master pastry chef Marc Aumont craft his creations right in front of your eyes.
43 W. 42nd Street; 212-201-1985
Chocolate banana pudding at Magnolia Bakery
At last, chocolate lovers have a banana pudding to call their own: The famed bakery recently rolled out a suitably cocoa-enhanced version. Like the original, it's loaded with bananas, but this one features chocolate pudding instead of vanilla and Oreo cookies in place of your standard Nillas. A sprinkling of chocolate shavings adds a final, rich touch. Don't feel like sharing? Pick up a party size to make sure everyone gets a spoonful.
401 Bleecker Street; 212-462-2572
The Devil in Ganache at Mah-Ze-Dahr
Chef Umber Ahmad knows her way around a chocolate pastry — there's good reason why her brownies are legendary — but true chocophiles should seek out her version of devil's food cake. The flourless cake is frosted with a whipped chocolate ganache icing, and the cake itself is a rich mix of white and brown sugar, bittersweet chocolate and a hint of coffee.
28 Greenwich Avenue; 212-498-9810
Lavender hot chocolate cake at Marché Maman
Maman has reinvented French cafe cuisine with its mini empire and the latest outpost, Marché Maman, continues to carry the torch. Its take on a molten chocolate cake is a Gallic delight: The batter is infused with lavender, resulting in a finished product that smells nearly as good as it tastes. Swirl in homemade strawberry rhubarb compote and MilkMade vanilla ice cream for the perfect bite.
237 Centre Street; 212-226-0700
Chocolate s'mores cake at Tavern62
David Burke is a master of kooky desserts (cheesecake lollipops, anyone?). At this Upper East Side joint, his take on an American tavern, it's no surprise he's reinvented the classic campfire dish. This five-layer confection is made up of rich dark chocolate cake, fluffy hazelnut-chocolate mousse and served, of course, with an additive graham cracker ice cream.
135 E. 62nd Street; 212-988-9021