When theater-goers and cupcake-seeking college students spread the word, Naked Chocolate Cafe became more than just a truffle in the rough. Set just off the Avenue of the Arts (ahem, Broad Street), the chocolaterie quickly found itself filling, night after night. It's revered for its thick, potent hot chocolate, the likes of which is available in a "We'll Never Tell" size and serves a wicked end to the evening. It turns out that splitting a fondue platter, diving into a mountainous cupcake sundae piped with whipped cream and building a box of artisan chocolates is more decadent than any shopping spree you can have on Walnut Street. It only makes sense that the shop is triplicating its recipe for success at a 34th and Walnut Street location and a spot in the United Plaza building at 31 South 18th Steet. Chocolate may be the new currency.
The Rittenhouse Square branch of El Fuego brings a non-chain burrito option to the Qdoba-fied area. Take two serves up beer as well, but also bangs out margaritas and jukebox tunes along with the big, fat burritos they're known for at their Washington Square location. As hard as it is to come by California-style Mexican in Philadelphia, we're fortunate to land another tasty locale.
No longer will you leave the West for gelato. Capogiro's third setting is expected in February at 39th & Walnut. It may seem like a long wait, but the Radian Building's incoming gelateria will be worth every scoop. They do say the third time is the charm.
Another delicacy we have a dearth of? The infectious cupcake. Brown Betty Dessert Boutique once required a day trip to Liberties Walk (brunch, yard sale, art opening, cupcake pick-up) that was as inconvenient as it was delicious. Now it's a little easier to seize the fluffy confections at their Rittenhouse annex. The tiny outpost pairs perfectly with the neighborhood's luxe-lifers and features a flavor list that revolves daily. Expect regular sightings of the popular red velvet cupcake and pineapple poundcake, but spontaneity is the rule here. You'll catch us hanging around on strawberry letter, company's comin', and sing little Alice days.
Naked Chocolate Cafe
34th and Walnut St.
El Fuego II
2101 Chestnut St.
39th and Walnut St.
Brown Betty Petite
269 South 20th St.