Warm Up This Winter with Boozy Hot Chocolate

By Eric Twardzik · 02/19/2021

As far as names for cocktails go, Hojoko Cocoa is pretty catchy—but it’s what goes into this warming dram that makes it memorable.

The Hojoko bar team set out to make an amaro hot chocolate as a way to warm up guests while the Fenway neighborhood restaurant keeps its windows open to improve ventilation, says service and beverage manager Nick Pratt. (Or, to keep a hand warm while they bring home takeout—it’s also available to-go.) Made with Valrhona Chocolate and the bitter Italian digestif Fernet-Branca, this cocoa introduces another layer of flavor using Allen’s Coffee Brandy, a darkly sweet liqueur that’s produced in Massachusetts and beloved in Maine.

Fernet is “nice and earthy, but has a minty note to it, which worked really well in the hot chocolate,” Pratt says.

Garnishing the drink are amber rum marshmallows, created by coating the cloud-like confections in Hojoko’s house three-rum blend, then lightly torching them. The trifecta of molasses-based rum, demerara-based rum, and sugarcane-based rhum Agricole infuses the marshmallows with a deep, caramelized flavor.

Pratt recommends that this boozy winter warmer follows the heaviest part of your meal. Try it after the Hojoko Wagyu Cheeseburger, which tops a luxe chuck and short rib beef blend with American cheese, “special sauce,” and dashi pickles.

“The burger is super rich, and anything you drink after that has to have the most texturally rich and powerful flavors of your whole meal,” Pratt says. “This is essentially dessert.”

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