Max Brenner’s
841 Broadway (13th/14th), NYC
141 2nd Avenue (9th), NYC

On the weekend of our first anniversary, we decided to keep it low-key and have a chill day in the East Village of food and movies. Of course a decadent breakfast was a must. Max Brenner’s: Chocolate By The Bald Man was definitely the right choice. We had been before, but never for breakfast, but apparently it is an indulgent treat for any age, at any time of the day. The atmosphere succeeds in being warm and comfortable with dark wood paneling, with everything chocolate brown and a soothing soulful soundtrack. It is very similar to Starbuck’s in its planned comfort that has made every detail so comforting and inviting, you forget the contrived corporate machine. But the atmosphere wasn’t why we were there. We were there for one thing: the thick Italian hot chocolate in the hug mug. It has to be one of the greatest creations on the planet. It’s warm, thick, rich, molten chocolate in a white mug that you wrap your hands around and hug while you sip it. My wife is a chocolate fiend and she was beaming on a day when little else would be quite as satisfying.

We also had some interesting egg dishes served right in their sizzling skillets. It’s a great place for kids. They offer a s’mores fondue plate that’s great for sharing, and a large menu of chocolate based sandwiches, drinks, snacks and desserts, although I can’t imagine anything else being as satisfying as the Italian hot chocolate. It gets a Golden Bonzone just for that. Go and try it. Now.