CocoaBella Chocolates- San Francisco

CocoaBella Chocolates

Rated: ♣♣ (This review is solely on their hot chocolate.)

K and I have sipped a ton of hot chocolate in our time. From instant packets of Swiss Miss to Cacao Sampaka in Barcelona, we’ve probably consumed enough hot chocolate to fill a swimming pool. I was told that CocoaBella Chocolates in the Westfield Shopping Center in San Francisco has a  notable sipping chocolate.

The little chocolate stand at the front of the shopping center sells little pieces of gourmet chocolate, but if you walk to the back of their stand, you can order a full cup of rich, piping-hot liquid chocolate. They have a handful of flavors to choose from – peanut butter hot chocolate, spicy hot chocolate, mint hot chocolate, and a few others. You even have the option of ordering dark or milk chocolate for your drink. I tried to order the peanut butter, but they ran out, even before 12pm! So, instead I got the hazelnut and K got the mint. Ten dollars later, we each had 2 tiny cups of the thick drinking chocolate. I was a little disappointed by the size, but then concluded that I probably shouldn’t be drinking anymore than what I had.

CocoaBella Menu

After my first sip, it tasted like I was drinking liquid Nutella… and that’s a good thing. Though it was a little too watery to my liking, the flavor was still pretty good. The hazelnuts weren’t too overpowering and the texture of the drink was really smooth. K’s mint hot chocolate was okay. The mint was more of a fresh mint than a peppermint. It almost tasted like I was drinking regular hot chocolate after brushing my teeth with toothpaste. Not a great flavor.

CocoaBella Hot Chocolates

Overall, I was disappointed with CocoaBella’s hot chocolate, especially since they’re charging $5 per cup. If you’re looking for some stellar sipping chocolate, try Christopher Elbow Artisanal Chocolate in Hayes Valley for $4.50. Their chocolate is rich, velvety and topped with a home made (and complimentary) marshmallow.

CocoaBella Chocolates
Westfield San Francisco Centre
865 Market St
San Francisco, CA 94103
Neighborhoods: Union Square, SOMA

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Captain Crunch Frappuccino at Starbucks

Starbucks Captain Crunch Frap

After seeing this on the Huffington Post the other day, my coworker and I had to try out the Starbucks secret menu.

The first drink that caught our attention was the Captain Crunch Frappuccino. Whaa?? Captain Crunch in a Frappuccino? How does it work? So, we headed down to the Starbucks in our building to try it out. Apparently, it’s a strawberries and cream frap with toffee nut syrup. The strangest combination, but somehow they marry together and make the awesomeness that is a Captain Crunch flavor.

On my first sip, it tasted exactly like Captain Crunch or Berry Crunch. It’s funny because I don’t think there is strawberry or toffee flavoring in the children’s cereal. After getting over the weird combo of flavors, I started to really like the drink. I’m really excited to try the other items on the menu!

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Sam’s Kitchen – Green Tea Matcha Shakes

This is my all time favorite shake to make at home. It’s healthy, refreshing and guilt-free because I use a green powder filled with tons of antioxidants, low fat milk and a little bit of honey.

Ingredients:

2 tbsp green tea matcha powder
3 cups low fat milk
1.5 tbsp honey
4 cups ice

I’ve searched high and low for green tea matcha powder and the only place I can find it is at Whole Foods. Whole Foods does have a variety of green tea matchas ranging from $30 to $7. I opted for the $7 pack. The Rishi Sweet Matcha that I’m currently using tastes great and is slightly sweetened with sugar.

Directions:

Dump the ice, milk, matcha powder and honey in a blender. Usually I eye-ball the ingredients until I get the consistency and flavor that I like. Blend until the ice is crushed into tiny little pieces. One trick is to use tons of ice and less milk because the milk will try to separate from the ice when it starts to melt. More ice also means a thick consistency.

If you want to add a little richness, try adding a scoop of vanilla ice cream before you blend.

Try this:

Mix a teaspoon of green tea matcha powder to hot milk or water for a cozy latte or cup of tea!

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Lowering the Bar: 5 Places to Drink For Cheap (or Free) This Week

For you drinkers out there, check out this post from 7×7.

1. Fillmore Cocktail Crawl: The Fillmore district, which is eager to remind locals of its swingin’, gentrified new look, is hosting a cocktail crawl next Tuesday, with four restaurants (Yoshi’s, Rasselas, Sheba Piano Lounge, and 1300 on Fillmore) each mixing their own DonQ rum cocktail and passing a few hors d’oeuvres. The price? Only $5, which all goes to the local charity Mo’ MAGIC, if you RSVP here. Space is limited, but if you’re turned away from the list, each venue will still have $6 cocktails and bar bites on offer during the crawl. (Tuesday, February 5, 6:30-9:30 pm, beginning at Yoshi’s, 1330 Fillmore St., Fillmore.)

2. Jippidy Happy Hour: The folks at Jippidy are dedicated to promoting their company through awesome happy hours– and we’re not about to stand in their way. Next Thursday, they’ll be offering up $2.50 beers, $4 vodka drinks and sake bombs, and half-off appetizers at Mas Sake. Not cheap enough? E-mail them here with a link to your Jippidy profile, and your first vodka drink is free. (Thursday, February 4, 6-8 pm, at Mas Sake, 2030 Lombard St., Marina.)

3. Tokyo Go Go Late-Night: Happy hour has long been a fixture in the early hours at this Mission sushi joint, but now they’re going late-night, too. All week long, the wee hours at Tokyo Go Go mean $3 Kirin and small hot sakes, as well as a good variety of $3.50 handrolls. We have a new favorite way to end a 16th St. bar crawl. (Early happy hour: Monday-Saturday, 5:30-7 pm, Sunday, 5-6:30 pm. Late happy hour: Sunday-Thursday, 9-11 pm, Friday and Saturday, 10 pm-1 am, at Tokyo Go Go, 3174 16th St., Mission.)

4. Drake Bar Buy One, Get One 28 Cents: The Sir Francis Drake hotel is celebrating its history with a double happy hour that’s split between its two bars. The early shift is at the Scala’s Bistro bar, the late shift at the Drake Bar, and at both bars, when you buy one drink at full price, the second is 28 cents (in honor of 1928, the year the hotel was founded). The cocktails aren’t cheap ($10-12), but beer is only $4, meaning you can enjoy two brews for a reasonable $2.14 apiece. (Daily, 3-5 pm at Scala’s Bistro Bar and 5-7 pm at Drake Bar, 450 Powell St., Union Square.

5. CAV Wine Bar Industry Mondays: While “industry nights” are technically meant to attract restaurant workers, bartenders, and other service-industry types who are working for the weekend, there’s no membership card, and even 9-to-5 wage slaves can attend. CAV has just introduced a great industry night, featuring $2 PBR and three types of $3 sliders: prime rib, BBQ pork, and BLT. It’s an easy way to feel like a captain of industry on an entry-level salary. (Mondays, 9 pm-12 am, at CAV Wine Bar and Kitchen, 1666 Market St., Upper Market.)

Source from 7×7.com.

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