You eat with your eyes first. That’s what we’ve always been taught. Well, if this were a school, then Cocoa by Ali has undoubtedly nailed the assignment. This cute little patisserie knows how to dazzle and entice with its eye-catching desserts, drinks and brunch options. Founded by former British Bake Off star, Ali Imdad, Cocoa by Ali has tucked in neatly near the Gas Street Basin and become one of the most stunning food spots on the waterfront.
Start your day off with a healthy Unicorn smoothie bowl – topped with mixed berries, banana and sweetened coconut. Or if you’re feeling indulgent, you can do no wrong in our eyes by ordering the Biscoff French toast. It comes topped with cinnamon sugar, chocolate hazelnut sauce, mixed berries and a side scoop of vanilla gelato. Simply stunning for the eyes and stomach.
After something a bit more substantial, then Cocoa by Ali also has you covered with some great halal options. Order Greek-influenced avocado on toast, or how about the North African classic, shakshuka? But the real stand-outs are the menu-bending chicken tikka mac ‘n’ cheese, which comes with raita and poppadoms. And of course, the Moroccan-inspired chicken burger served with ras-el-hanout nachos. Mind blown.
Of course, it’s Cocoa by Ali’s astonishing drinks that have really stolen our hearts. You can order all your classic coffees, teas, hot chocolates and soft drinks. But glance over at their ‘Special Lattes‘ for the real stars of the menu. “Instagram was made for these,” they claim.
The violet-flavoured and bright-coloured Mermaid latte comes straight from our dreams. Ocean Breeze is an iced latte with layers of blue and white. For true decadence, try the Rumpelstiltskin; a gold latte flavoured with vanilla and caramel, and topped with edible glitter and gold leaf.
What patisserie would be complete without afternoon tea? At £19.95 per person, it comes with handmade sandwiches, freshly baked butter scones (with jam and clotted cream, of curse), bite-sized confectionery cakes, and a range of drinks with regular top-ups. Cocoa by Ali truly is the most magical place.