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Chocolaterian

In a word: There's a party goin' on.

The specs: #00820  
2004 Atwood Ave., 53704
Details at Chocolaterian on Urbanspoon
Official web site, Facebook

Latest Chocolaterian Cafe news and reviews at del.icio.us

JM ate the ham and cheese quiche.
Nichole ate the ribollita with a Parisian hot chocolate.
We split the caramel fondue and took some macaroons home.
The bill was about $30, or $15/person, plus tip.
JM and Nichole gave Chocolaterian Cafe an A (see our grading rubric).

Chocolaterian Cafe was a treat. For dinner, we chose a small, light ham and cheese quiche and a bowl of Tuscan bean soup brightened up with tomatoes and topped with a sliver of sharp cheese.

QuicheRibollita

For dessert, we got the caramel fondue. A hot dish of medium-thin caramel sauce went great with green apples, pretzels, marshmallows, and especially bananas; the strawberries were quality for this time of year. The pound cake was a little on the dry and crumbly side. But the marshmallows worked well in both the caramel and the thick, warm cup of Parisian cocoa. Dipping something like a Sta-Puft in the impossibly smooth, warm molten chocolate seemed like a crude thing to do, but when the co-owner herself gave it the double thumbs-up, we felt right at home.

Caramel fondueParisian hot chocolate

So the desserts are absolutely worth it and the rest is all so far enough above average that it merits note, too. We're not really surprised that a place like 1) works, 2) is located on the near east side and 3) seems to be doing a good trade without a lot of hoopla. What does surprise is how much they can do without going too far from first principles. We'd recommend you check it out.

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I'd recommend you call ahead if there's something particular you plan to order. The day I tried to have lunch there, soups were out, salads were out, and I can't stand quiche. My only option was a plate containing about 6 ounces of food (boxed crackers, salami, cornichon, and - the only really good thing on the plate - a jarred fig jam. At $14 it was ridiculously overpriced. The Badger Bites are amazing, there's no denying, but I couldn't get out of my mouth the bitter taste from the (tiny) quantity and (large) cost of my lunch, so I couldn't enjoy it completely.

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