Treats Sold in the Cold

Oolong Green Tea Latte and Salted Caramel Oolong Tea soft serve at Bar Pa Tea.

Melissa Cen

Oolong Green Tea Latte and Salted Caramel Oolong Tea soft serve at Bar Pa Tea.

As the cold weather approaches, food businesses are breaking out their winter treats to put everyone in the winter spirit. Hot cocoa, toasted marshmallows, and peppermint flavors are only a small part of the winter menu.

Hot chocolate has been part of the winter tradition for many centuries. However, this year, many cafes have stepped up their game and put their own modern twist on the beloved drink.

The Milk and Cream Bar, an ice cream shop famous for its cereal spin on desserts, brought Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal milk hot chocolate to their menu. Their hot cocoa has cereal mix-ins that make the winter drink stand out from the rest. “The hot chocolate was like eating milk and cereal but having hot chocolate as the milk,” said Maya Ghosh ’20.

Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream put together two timeless favorites—hot chocolate and ice cream floats—to create a new winter delight. The shop is now serving hot chocolate floats made with their ultra rich hot chocolate ganache and your choice of ice cream or whipped cream.

The traditional hot cocoa is typically topped with mini marshmallows. Not afraid to go big, Squish Marshmallows now serves their hot chocolate with a single giant marshmallow. Their marshmallows come in four different flavors: gingerbread, peppermint, smores, and banana pudding.

“The hot chocolate was like eating milk and cereal but having hot chocolate as the milk,” said Maya Ghosh ’20.

Gelso & Grand is yet another shop to put a spin on the popular favorite. They are serving their hot cocoa cookie shot. The hot chocolate is served in a small cookie cup, which is a cookie served in the shape of a cup, dipped in chocolate and finished off with marshmallows.

Sticking with the hot chocolate theme, ice cream shop Soft Swerve has recently announced a new flavor: frozen hot chocolate. Although the store is mainly known for their bright purple yam flavored ice cream, they are also known to create new and interesting flavors, some of which are inspired by Asian cuisine.

New Territories, an ice cream shop known for its Hong Kong influence, has officially switched their menu from fall-oriented snacks to winter snacks. They now serve their egg waffles with peppermint candy cane chocolate pie ice cream. Also on their winter menu is their milkshake, Mr. Grumpy, which consists of chocolate ice cream blended with brownies, topped with rice crispy torched marshmallows, and hot fudge.

Melissa Cen
Cereal Milk Hot Cocoa from Milk and Cream Bar.

With a dessert originating all the way from Japan, Bonsai Kakigori makes a Japanese delicacy with a New York twist. Its Winter Kakigori Menu is now up, featuring three new flavors: winter chestnut, blood orange & chocolate, and banana foster pie. Kakigori is a traditional Japanese dessert made from shaving a block of ice with a special machine. Unlike the shaved ice found on New York streets, this Japanese dessert has a unique fluffy texture and special flavors that leave you wanting more.

Stax Ice Cream is all about new flavors. This winter they brought to the table red velvet & cream, peppermint Oreo bark, and roasted oolong milk tea ice cream.

Stax Ice Cream isn’t the only place spilling the tea; Bar Pa Tea, a venue famous for its modern spin on soft serve and bubble tea, is also launching tea-based winter flavors. Stax has surprised its fans with salted caramel oolong tea and brown sugar black tea soft serve flavors. Stax didn’t stop there; it also added the flavors to its tea latte menu.

Stuffed Ice Cream is bringing peppermint to the game. This shop brings a new twist to ice cream sandwiches by combining donuts and ice cream. The Mint Monster and peppermint latte are two “cruffs,” or donut ice cream sandwiches, that are sure to get you on the peppermint bandwagon. The Mint Monster includes Andes Peppermint ice cream and Cookie Monster ice cream with Oreos and Captain Crunch. Their peppermint latte is made with Andes Peppermint and Vietnamese coffee with almonds and caramel.

Melissa Cen
Peppermint Candy Cane Chocolate Pie Ice Cream with a Salted Egg Yolk Waffle Cone from New Territories.

At Milk Bar, peppermint dominates the menu. It is serving peppermint bark layer cake, peppermint mocha, peppermint quake ice cream, where peppermint, hot fudge, and pretzels meet, and pretzel peppermint snap, made with crunchy chocolate wafer, caramel, and pretzel all covered in white chocolate and sprinkled with peppermint bark. However, if you are not into peppermint, Milk Bar also serves its signature holiday crack pie, made with a toasted oat crust and gooey butter filling with an added festive snowflake dusting.

Oddfellows Ice Cream serves a popular winter drink in ice cream form: eggnog soft serve. They didn’t just stop there—they also added gingerbread soft serve with ginger molasses cookie crumble, peanut butter s’mores ice cream, chocolate peppermint ice cream, and roasted pear caramel walnut ice cream.

If ice cream is too cold for you to handle in the winter, cookie dough can be a good alternative—especially with the new winter flavors. DO, a shop that went viral for its edible cookie dough, has added a winter wonderland of flavors. These flavors include marshmallow hot cocoa, snickerdoodle pretzel, banana nutella, chocolate mint, Fluffernutter, peppermint hot cocoa, caramel latte, Gimme S’more, and Frosted Fork. With so many flavors to choose from, you won’t go unsatisfied.

When speaking of winter desserts in New York City, you can never forget the famous treat served at Bryant Park. After a fun day of ice skating at the Bryant Park rink, you can find a nice warm chimney cake at the holiday shop. Similar to a churro but with the texture of a soft pretzel, the treat is served pasted with a choice of Nutella, peanut butter, or speculoos. You can choose between nuts, chocolate, and sprinkles as toppings.

Although the cold is here, these winter treats will cheer you up.