Maybe National Chocolate Cake Day is just a ruse planted by Betty Crocker to convince all of us to eat more of the good stuff, the way DeBeers invented the diamond engagement ring or the candy companies invented Valentine's Day (well, sort of).
But doesn't chocolate cake sell itself? Do we need a holiday to get us into the most classically and richly delicious of all desserts? Maybe not. But we've got one anyway and it's Thursday, so grab a glass of milk and head to these spaces for the best versions in town.
1. Mom's Chocolate Cake at Benjy's
This isn't a "just like mom's" chocolate cake. This is the real deal, with each one still made by owner Benjy Levit's mother. (Benjy: Give her a break, already!) With a gooey layer that encases a rich, fudgy center and just enough pecans for a crunch, it's simply perfection.
2. 24k Chocolate Cake at Strip House
Paper-thin layers of moist chocolate cake and smooth dark chocolate filling imported from Spain, plus an elegant semi-sweet ganache all over make this the most decadent chocolate cake in town.
3. Uncle Darryl's Chocolate Cake at The Chocolate Bar
People may rave about the more straightforward Aunt Etta's chocolate cake, but we head to the Chocolate Bar when we crave something a little darker and more complex — a cake with a rich, dark chocolate layers surrounding a sweet filling sprinkled with toffee and chocolate chip crumbles, all wrapped up in a sophisticated chocolate ganache.
4. Warm Chocolate Cake at Mark's American Cuisine
You know how Love Actually is so stuffed full of saccharine rom-com cliches that it should be terrible, but it's so smart and cute you love it anyway? That's how the chocolate cake at Mark's is. Whether paired with praline or mint ice cream, it's simply divine without crossing that "too sweet" line.
5. Jennifer's Birthday Cake at Dessert Gallery
Jennifer is Dessert Gallery owner Sara Brook's daughter, and nothing takes us back to our own childhood like this ultimate version of the classic chocolate birthday cake with a few sprinkles on top for flair.
Bonus: Vegan Chocolate Cake at Whole Foods Market
We polled our CultureMap vegan extraordinaire, Joel Luks, who said for his money the best vegan chocolate cake in town is the unassuming version at Whole Foods. Who knew?