Chocoholics, Meet Your Match
(Len De Pas)
Last night marked the first official night of dinner service at the much-anticipated Co Co. Sala, a romantic lounge-restaurant-chocolate factory hybrid that specializes in sweet.
The F Street lounge's marquee offerings are the four Monde du Chocolat menus: five courses of desserts inspired by the flavors of India, Italy, America and South America. In addition to these $30 prix-fixe selections, the restaurant also serves a la carte small plates (dubbed "Coco Bites") and inventive cocktails.
My date and I went looking for a balance of dinner and dessert, so our waitress recommended three to four Coco Bites per person. We then split the "Aztec Experience" Monde du Chocolat. Sharing makes sense if you order a Monde du Chocolat, but be sure to order enough of the small plates if you want a full meal -- the portions really are single serving.
Planning a trip? Here are some not-to-be missed items we sampled last night.
* The Cocojito. Chocolate-infused vodka and chocolate shavings up the cacao quotient in this $13 cocktail. Lime and muddled mint give the drink its distinctive, refreshing flavor.
* Spicy Moroccan Swordfish Slider. The savory side of the menu includes $7 sliders, crabcakes, salads and mac and cheese dishes. With its flaky fish, cheesy bun and hazelnut sauce, the swordfish slider was the best small plate I tried. A spicy shrimp mac and cheese dish was a close second.
* Hot Chocolate Souffle. The Aztec Experience Monde du Chocolat starts with cinnamon-crusted churros and finishes with a salty-sweet Mexican wedding cookie, but somewhere in the middle, you get to taste the spicy molten liquid holed up in this souffle. You can order this dish a la carte for $12, but it's worth spending the additional $18 for the full five courses.
The restaurant will only serve dinner for the next four to six weeks, but it will eventually be open for breakfast and lunch.
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