Hot Chocolate and International Development

D.C. is a known hotspot for all things politics, presidential tweets and news stories, and International affairs. However, upon visiting, my friends and I discovered D.C’s specialty for culture, food trucks, and above all-- hot chocolate.

I’ve probably consumed over 1,000 cups of hot chocolate in my lifetime. Usually Swissmiss and Starbucks brands, occasionally a gourmet cup if I can get my hands on some.  And even with these insane amounts of hot chocolate coursing through my veins, there are only two cups of hot chocolate that I’ve consumed which could meet and surpass any expectations I could have for a cup of steaming cocoa.

The first of the two hails from Boston, MA. My friends and I stumbled upon it during our trip to Google Headquarters last year. The hot chocolate is found in a small Japanese Coffee Shop called Osaga and my god, it is heavenly. I can still taste it right now as I am writing this; creamy and rich as if I was drinking an entire chocolate bar. Creamiest hot chocolate I’ve ever had.

The second hot chocolate, from Cafe Chocolat in D.C, was phenomenal. It had that great creamy taste, but it was also topped with various spices which enhanced the entirety of its flavor, and gave the cup energy and life. My favorite part about hot chocolate though, is the experience that comes with it when you get the perfect cup.

We were able to sit there and watch our barista make it. He had obviously made a thousand of these before and did so effortlessly. It just blew my mind that something so good required so seemingly little effort. Hot chocolate like this is a social event of sorts. With each sip you play a game of “who will speak first” -- the barista or the chocolate sipper. It was me.

Upon talking to the barista, I discovered that he was in a similar major to mine (International Relations), that he spoke Arabic and French, and that he still had no idea what he was doing with his life. And just like that I had four things in common with the man responsible for making the best hot chocolate. I love learning about people, and there is really nothing comparable to a hot cup of chocolate, the company of friends, and great conversation--all in a beautiful and grand city of opportunity.