Hot Chocolate

Steaming, sweet, and capable of making your knees buckle, hot chocolate is a liquid valentine. Dense or delicate—there’s no right or wrong.

1. Clementine 

The well-balanced cocoa here is grand: Just a whiff of cinnamon punches through chocolate that’s rich but altogether drinkable—by which we mean you won’t go into hyperglycemic shock if you finish it all. But we’re suckers for those marshmallows—perfect cubes of airy sweetness bobbing on the surface, then dissolving into a creamy layer of foam that’s bound for your upper lip. » 1751 Ensley Ave., Century City, 310-552-1080.

2. Pizzeria Mozza 

For the wintry months, Mozza pastry chef Dahlia Narvaez forged a dessert that you could stick a fork in with Valrhona chocolate, toasted cinnamon sticks, and heaps of vanilla. In case you didn’t feel decadent enough, the cocoa comes with two pig-shaped ginger cookies. » 641 N. Highland Ave., Hollywood, 323-297-0101.

3. Teuscher 

It’s death at first sip. This cup of heavy—but silky smooth—Swiss chocolate is no joke. One taste and we had to make sure no one was looking; this has got to be illicit. Whip or no, it’s up to you. » 9548 Brighton Way, Beverly Hills, 310-276-2776.

4. Señor Fred 

OK, it’s more of a champurrado—that burly Mexican cocoa drink thickened with masa and touched with cinnamon—but we can’t think of a chocolate drink we’d like more as an entrée. Add a dollop of whipped cream and five puffed, sugary churros for dunking, and who needs dinner? » 13730 Ventura Blvd., Sherman Oaks, 818-789-3200.