CHOCOBAR CORTES - Popular Caribbean Chocolate Restaurant Opens in South Bronx

CHOCOBAR CORTES – Popular Caribbean Chocolate Restaurant Opens in South Bronx

CHOCOBAR CORTES - Popular Caribbean Chocolate Restaurant Opens in South Bronx

Chocobar Cortés, the restaurant brand of Chocolate Cortés, a 92-year-old family-owned Puerto Rican and Dominican chocolate-making business known for its rich hot chocolate, is a culinary and cultural experience that celebrates the company’s Caribbean chocolate tradition, culture and delicious flavors of the Caribbean. Located at 141 Alexander Avenue in the Mott Haven neighborhood of the South Bronx, Chocobar Cortés will offer meals throughout the day, with a chocolate shop and coffee, breakfast and pastries in the morning, lunch in the afternoon. , a lively cocktail and atmosphere of dinner in the evenings and brunch on weekends. The concept is an extension of the original Chocobar Cortés in Old San Juan, which opened in 2013 and was named the Caribbean’s Best Restaurant by USA today in 2017.

“We are very happy to open Chocobar Cortés in New York. This is our very first location outside of our flagship in Old San Juan, ”said Carlos Cortés, Executive Director of Chocobar Cortés and a fourth generation member of the Cortés family. “We chose the Bronx because it is one of the strongholds of the Puerto Rican and Dominican communities that grew up with our chocolate. We hope to inspire the city and the world with the taste of our chocolate, the richness of our culture, and the Caribbean heat. “

Chocobar Cortés CEO Ricardo De Obaldia has created a menu that focuses on traditional Puerto Rican and Dominican comfort food with a twist – everything on the menu includes chocolate! Signature dishes include grilled chocolate cheese chocolate butter; a Chocoburger with “chocochup” (chocolate ketchup); Roasted pork chalupitas de Mofongo, hot chocolate sauce and chocolate guacamole; and a Chocobar salad bowl with chocolate dressing. The menu will also include chocolate and tropical desserts from Ricardo de Obaldia. The drink selection includes the famous Chocolate Cortés hot chocolate served with cheddar cheese, a special edition 80% dark chocolate made with Puerto Rican cocoa and an assortment of refreshing frozen chocolate drinks (Choco Frío) made with coffee or of a variety of tropical fruits. An iced Choco Martini based on vodka and Irish cream, the Don Ignacio, named in honor of the CEO of Chocolate Cortés, and made with aged rum, cognac and spice syrup with a dark chocolate edge highlight the offer of cocktails. In addition to the full-service bar, wine and beer – including beer from the local Bronx brewery – are also available. A variety of pastries, such as Quesito Cortés, a Chocobar version of the famous Puerto Rican pastry “Quesito”, chocolate-filled croissants and chocolate churros are served with brunch selections that include sandwiches from Mallorca (Mallorca is a Puerto Rican sweet bread), Estrellados en Mangú (a classic Dominican plantain breakfast with a chocobar twist) and chocolate French toast.

Larry F. Purvis, a 30 year veteran of the restaurant industry with experience in all areas including chef, event planning, management and university professor in hotel and hospitality management. restaurants, is the Managing Director of Chocobar Cortés. Chef Maria Martinez, originally from Quebradilas, Puerto Rico, with 10 years of experience in kitchens that include Mesa Grill and Brooklyn’s brunch hotspot Café Ghia, will oversee the kitchen.

The atmosphere of Chocobar Cortés is strongly inspired by Old San Juan, combining the warmth of the Caribbean with the energy of the Bronx. Walls, banquettes, and woodwork in sea green, ocean blue, and warm whites echo the island’s palette, providing a backdrop for splashes of bright yellow, electric coral, and punchy black. The walls are lined with wooden shelves, while the iconic Chocolate Cortés chocolate molds, historic images, and antique advertisements act as architectural accents and tell more of the history of Chocolate Cortés. Three arches frame the 20-foot main bar which features wood decorated with brass nails referring to the beautiful typical doors of the colonial city. The focal point of the main dining room is a weaving project commissioned by artist Jorge Gonzalez, which passes on ancestral knowledge to come up with new ways to promote the principles of growth and culture rooted in Puerto Rico. A checkerboard cement tile floor melts the two spaces, and woven sconces and string lights transport the space from breakfast to lunch, dinner and nightlife. During the day, recordings of vintage Chocolate Cortés commercials can be heard in the washrooms, but at night it turns into a tropical oasis with the sound of the tiny frog native to Puerto Rico – the coquí.

The coffee and chocolate space includes an art wall that will feature works of art from the Fundación Cortés, starting with framed images of the four-part comics La Borinqueña X Chocolate Cortés made as part of the collaboration launched more early this year. La Borinquena is the first Afro-Puerto Rican comic book superheroine. It was created by comic book artist Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez, originally from the Bronx. Chocolate Cortés and La Borinqueña launched the Activate your powers with the arts (Activate your powers with the arts), a program created to raise funds for the youth art programs of the Fundación Cortés in Puerto Rico. Four special edition hot chocolate bars featuring the new four-part comic book series featuring La Borinqueña are now available online and in select US markets, including New York City and the Chocobar Cortés. Proceeds from the sale of bars and other special merchandise will support the Fundación Cortés whose mission is to educate and inspire its passion for the arts of the Caribbean and to celebrate Latinx culture.

About Chocobar Cortés

Elaine Shehab is the founder and creative mind of Chocobar Cortés. With her husband, Ignacio Cortés, CEO of Chocolate Cortés, she played for many years with the idea of ​​opening a chocolate concept. After extensive research across the world, they set out to create a unique concept that celebrated the rich family history where Chocolate Cortés starred. Their youngest son, Carlos Cortés, is the executive director of Chocobar Cortés and leads the project in New York. Its objective is to share with the world this unique family chocolate experience that is part of the culture and cuisine of the Caribbean.

About Chocolate Cortés

The Chocolate Cortés family have been making Caribbean chocolate from farm to bar since 1929. Known for their iconic rich hot chocolate, Cortés has since provided countless moments of warmth and joy to Puerto Rican and Dominican homes. Currently, Cortés is the largest chocolate manufacturing company in the Caribbean and one of the most recognizable brands in both countries and their diasporas. Since its inception, the company has viewed education as a key ingredient in reaching new horizons: providing inclusive education in which the integration of the arts and humanities plays a key role in helping to transform our society and improve the quality of life.

About the Cortés Foundation

Founded in 2012, Fundación Cortés is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization whose mission is to educate and inspire one’s passion for the arts of the Caribbean. Their theory of social transformation involves designing innovative and interactive artistic integration activities that complement academic and other thematic programs. To date, through their core program, Educa Cortés, they have served over 14,000 underserved children, youth and adults across Puerto Rico and have recorded over 75,000 recorded visits. Their two exhibition rooms for contemporary Caribbean art, open free of charge, become the main classrooms and the works of art the main educational tools. Fourteen exhibitions have been presented to date, including the current one by Edgardo Miranda-Rodríguez featuring La Borinqueña. Exhibitions are free and open to the public and available for private events and special meetings.

About Ernest Gloria and Whitley Esteban

The interiors were directed by Ernesto Gloria and Whitley Esteban, architects and interior designers based in New York and Pensacola. They approach their work with a studied point of view on rituals and tradition, and simultaneously an irreverence and a game decided with these same principles. The work is always informed by context and point of view, by a bigger story to tell.

Chocobar Cortés is located at 141 Alexander Avenue, Bronx, NY 10454. For more information, please call 718.841.9310 and visit

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Chocobar Cortés

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