Inwood's residents are already familiar with Choc NYC, their very own wonderland of jewel-like pastries, cakes and chocolate bon bons. But if you don't happen to live on the northern tip of Manhattan and crave a sweet-yet-sophisticated bite, then a visit to Choc NYC is definitely in order. "We've become a destination spot," confirms pastry chef Jemal Edwards, who owns the dessert shop with partner Brad Doles.
Now two years old, the immaculate storefront is quite tiny relative to the open kitchen in the back (Edwards says it was designed to support two or three more locations, which they hope to open in the near future; they're looking for spaces between Washington Heights and Riverdale). It's fun to see the busy staff in the back churning out an impressive selection of sweets in a mix of French, Austrian, Italian and Japanese traditions.
Photo: Lisa Vosper
A morning latte can be paired with a flaky chocolate croissant or the slightly more decadent French toast croissant, a caramelized croissant with toasted brown sugar and cinnamon–not to mention the various muffins, coffee cakes, and sticky buns. Desserts range from gorgeous pistachio eclairs to the popular Pleasuredome, a small chocolate cupola filled with a banana and rum-flavored chocolate mousse. I am not kidding when I say these selections are just scratching the surface.
There are also simpler treats like cookies and brownies, plus oh-so-French macarons. And Choc NYC's bon bons may be the best reason to visit tomorrow: the shop is selling a selection of its hand-made confections in boxes of four, six, and–just in time for Valentine's Day–twelve ($29.50). Make sure to check Choc NYC's Instagram for other holiday treats, like the Napoleon for two: a heart-shaped chocolate puff pastry with dark chocolate ganache and sweet raspberries.