Katherine Anne Confections' Amazing Desserts - Chicago

Mugs of chocolate and more at Katherine Anne's new shop

First order of business before visiting Katherine Anne Confections' new Logan Square storefront: Rally a group of friends.

You'll want help with the eight varieties of drinking chocolate ($7), each served in an oversized mug and made with E. Guittard chocolate and rich Kilgus milk.

These are thick, heavy brews, but the compelling assortment of flavors demands sampling more than one kind. There's milk chocolate scented with cinnamon, semisweet infused with Ipsento coffee, and bittersweet with pink peppercorns. Mexican hot chocolate is brazenly spiced with guajillo, habanero and cayenne peppers, and honey caramel and sea salt are stirred into the salted caramel.

On our next visit, we will table our white chocolate hesitations and try the white chocolate chai, flavored with black tea, star anise, cinnamon, clove and lime.

Choose a scoop of whipped cream or two marshmallows, in flavors like coffee and lemon-ginger, to accompany the mug (or nibble on the side).

Sugar comes in many other forms, of course: Katherine Anne's familiar caramels (75 cents) and truffles ($2.50), plus baked goods from Beurrage, a bakery that launched earlier this year and was only previously available at the Pilsen farmers' market. Its croissant is precisely as it should be: messily flaky outside and chewy within.

Katherine Anne Confections, 2745 W. Armitage Ave.; 773-235-1630 or katherine-anne.com