I think you could consider Hot Chocolate one of the pioneers of the Damen avenue stretch of Bucktown which is crammed with bars restaurants and boutiques. They've been on the block for over a decade and in that time has become many neighborhood residents favorite spot to brunch.
Locals favorite in Bucktown
I'm not a big breakfast guy and don't need brunch like some so my review is more because of my feelings for the brunch. Granted this visit was 4/5 months ago I still remember what I liked about it, and some things I didn't. The donuts were pretty good but served lukewarm which to me kills the whole point of ordering them in a restaurant. If they're not fried to order they're like most others.
Cinnamon Spiced Donuts
Looks like their menu has changed for the season but on the last one they had a pretty good example of shrimp and grits but it seemed to be missing that oomph that other versions tried. Maybe the grits needed some shrimp stock or if they already had some maybe more was needed.
Shrimp and Grits with Diced Bacon + Poached Egg
One of the most popular menu items at Hot Chocolate is the burger. It's been listed in a few 'best of' lists and many people around town claim it as their favorite. During the Brunch hour they simply add an egg. I', starting to become more of a no egg on my burger guy because I think it takes something away from the beef which in this case was a really nice blend from Slagel Farms. It was however served medium when asked for medium rare so that kind of annoyed me. I should be mandatory that all beef from farms such as Slagel be served medium rare or rare. The bacon took more flavor from the beef though it was bacon so. I liked that the accompaniments to the burger came as build your own but really disliked the bun which was way to dense. I like them fluffy. I hate pretzel buns. All in all this was a good burger just not one I would call my favorite. See ya next time.
Brunch Burger - slagel Farms beef, organic bacon, Carr Valley aged cheddar, pickle, sesame bun, house made chips
Mindy's Hot Chocolate
1747 N Damen Ave
Chicago, IL 60647