This inviting Wicker Park staple from James Beard award-winning pastry chef Mindy Segal has been serving up seasonal, sweet and savory new American fare (along with an extensive hot chocolate menu) for a very sweet decade.
“Mindy Segal was initially known for her stints as pastry chef at MK, MK North, Marché, Charlie Trotter’s, and Spago, but at her restaurant Hot Chocolate she offers a small, perpetually rotating dinner menu of locally grown and seasonally inspired creations—roast Gunthorp Farms chicken, roasted rack of lamb with Green Acres sorrel butter. Of course, Segal’s credentials guarantee an impressive dessert list, with confections such as a warm chocolate souffle tart served with house-made chocolate-caramel ice cream and pretzels. There’s hot chocolate as well, offered in a half-dozen varieties including “black and tans” (two-thirds hot chocolate, one-third hot fudge) and “half and halfs” (half espresso, half dark hot chocolate).” – Chicago Reader
“The menu at Mindy’s changes on the regular, based on what ingredients are in season, but the picture-perfect mac & cheese is a sure bet all year round. The magic here lies in the bubbly, partially charred layer of cheese of top, which imparts the dish a subtle smoky flavor.” – Thrillist
“While we can't keep our hands away from a basket of warm bread, there’s something about salt-roasted marble potatoes and caviar crème fraîche that makes for an even more enticing starter for the table… [Chef] Amanda Barnes salt-roasts a mix of purple, fingerling, Yukon and baby gold potatoes, and slightly smashes them while warm to ensure even thickness. The result is a tender potato with a crispy exterior and creamy interior that delivers the flavor punch of a potato chip without the crunch. The potatoes also serve as the perfect vessel to scoop up the decadent caviar crème fraîche, made with crème fraîche, lemon juice, lemon zest and caviar folded in at the end.” – Plate Magazine
“Mindy Segal has garnered countless accolades and awards for her sweets at Hot Chocolate and the restaurant has been a reliable go-to for years. While she’s no longer the day-to-day pastry chef, the desserts haven’t skipped a beat and continue to impress. Warm brioche doughnuts remain a staple on the menu, with a buttermilk glaze, toffee cocoa streusel and milk chocolate caramel sauce for dipping.”— Eater Chicago
The sunny storefront setting is warm and inviting in a (chocolate-y) palette of browns and creams. A garage door-sized panel, open in warmer months, adds an open air feel to the dining experience.
1747 N. Damen Avenue
Chicago, IL 60647