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It's National Cocoa Day


... and in my opinion there is no better way to celebrate than with a steaming cup of hot cocoa.

The hot cocoa at 17 Berkshire is one of my favorites in Memphis. You can buy a cup of this steamy chocolate elixir ready to drink, or purchase their mix to make it at home.

I asked 17 Berkshire owner Nuha Abudahair to share her tips for making Hot Cocoa.

Tip #1: The quality of your cocoa is the most important ingredient in any cup of hot chocolate. “Don’t skimp on quality here,” said Nuha. If you can, invest in a high-end brand like Callebaut. You can always use it for baking a cake or brownies too!

Tip #2: You can easily make hot chocolate using either bars of chocolate or cocoa powder. Cocoa powder is a more convenient option because you can make a big batch that’s ready to use when the craving strikes.

Tip #3: “Never, I repeat never, use water to make your hot chocolate,” says Nuha. This drink is supposed to be indulgent. Grab your milk of choice and bring it to a simmer

Tip #4: Choose your profile: hot chocolate is the base, but experiment with different spices and extracts for a unique result. Nuha says peppermint and marshmallows are obvious choices, but other options are lavender, cardamom, smoked sea salt, and even cayenne.

Tip #5: If you’re setting up a hot chocolate bar, include some salty snacks to offset the sweetness. This could be roasted nuts, popcorn, pretzels, or even some hard cheeses.

This is Jennifer Chandler with The Weekly Dish. Bon Appetit!

17 Berkshire is located at 2094 Trimble Place in Overton Square in Memphis, TN. A pop-up location in Saddle Creek Shopping Center in Germantown, TN will be open through Valentine’s Day 2024. For more information, visit

Jennifer Chandler graduated at the top of her class from Le Cordon Bleu in Paris. She is a full-time mom to two daughters in Memphis, Tennessee, and is a freelance food writer, restaurant consultant, and author of four cookbooks The Southern Pantry Cookbook, Simply Salads, Simply Suppers, and Simply Grilling.