Keep warm — and wired — while you’re out and about doing holiday shopping or errands
Stella’s Coffeehouse & Lunch Grotto
1430 W. Warner Road, Gilbert (480) 892-5656 or www.stellascoffeeaz.com
A double chocolate mocha featuring traditional and white chocolate from Ghirardelli Chocolate Company is a big seller this time of year at Stella’s, a locally owned coffeehouse located about 10 minutes from SanTan Village shopping center.
The chocolate is added to espresso and steamed milk, along with a shot of toasted marshmallow syrup, says owner Don Motz. A topping of whipped cream and graham cracker crumbs is optional. The mochas run $3.50-$4.25.
You’ll also find Bananas Foster, Honey and Praline and vanilla and caramel (called the Sugar Daddy) lattes on the menu.
Urban Tea Loft
11 W. Boston St., Chandler (480) 786-9600 or www.urbantealoft.com
Not a coffee fan? Try this modern tea room’s Winter Mint, a rooibos tea blended with chocolate, mint and a hint of vanilla steeped in hot water.
“A lot of people say it tastes like a York Peppermint Pattie,” says owner Eric Legrand.
A pot goes for $6.25 and contains several servings.
The sleek but cozy lounge not far from Chandler Fashion Center also offers a Hot Chocolate Chai for $4.25. Chai tea is mixed with warm milk, nutmeg and cinnamon, and a chocolate liqueur is either blended in or swirled atop a cloud of whipped cream.
Gold Bar Espresso
3141 S. McClintock Drive, Tempe (480) 839-3082 or www.goldbarespresso.org
The Gingerbread Latte is the drink of the moment at this 16-year-old indie coffee shop 3 miles from Tempe Marketplace.
Baristas blend gingerbread syrup and steamed milk with espresso, then top the aromatic brew with fresh, homemade whipped cream and a light dusting of cinnamon.
The drinks are $3.75-$4.50, depending on size, and are only available during the holidays.
Barista Veronica Miller says if gingerbread isn’t your thing, Gold Bar’s Peppermint Mocha Especiale and Pumpkin Spice Chai are also favorites this time of year.