There are so many ways to say “I love you,” but we’ve found the best way to be chocolate. And not just limited to chocolate truffles—we’re open to cakes and bars and cookies and more. We’ve gathered some of our favorite purveyors of chocolate confections—from an Ecuadorian company making high-end bars you savor like a glass of scotch to cake truffles decorated by an artist who has become an Instagram sensation—to create this list of outstanding places from which to buy your Valentine’s Day treats.
Milk Bar Red Velvet Duo
There are no shortage of chocolate treats available from the queen of kitschy desserts Christina Tosi’s Milk Bar at its current Valentine’s Day shop. But this year, the team has debuted a brand new creation: Red Velvet. But it’s not any ordinary kind, it combines red velvet cake and cheesecake. This limited-edition dessert features double-chocolate red velvet cake layers, cookies ‘n cream cheese frosting, chocolate cheesecake filling and red velvet crumbs. But the cake alone or in a package with cake truffles and cookies.
zChocolat Passionate Ambrosia
Handcrafted by French chocolatier Pascal Caffet with the finest butter and cream from Normandy, zChocolat makes pralines and truffles of exceptional quality. Its most over-the-top offering features all 26 different varieties from its Number Collection—the company’s chocolates that each feature their own distinct filling from the subtle Iranian pistachio to the silky white ganache covered in dark chocolate. There’s a mix of dark, milk and white chocolates from their signature collection as well as heart-shaped sweets filled with the likes of bourbon-vanilla caramel, hazelnut praline and more. The 90 sweets are placed inside a handmade mahogany chest for a most dramatic of presentations.
Auzerais Bellamy has packed a lot of flavor in her decadent little boxes of blondies. The former executive pastry chef at Brooklyn’s Beloved Pies ‘n’ Thighs, had been working on the recipe for years. After years of working in some of New York City’s best kitchens, she struck out on her own to found an online business selling her pecan and salted caramel, Brooklyn blackout, cinnamon sugar and birthday cake blondies directly to customers. For Valentine’s Day you also have the opportunity to buy her season favorite red velvet blondie in your variety pack.
To’ak Tasting Kits
To’ak has revitalized a varietal of Ecuadorian chocolate once thought lost and has taken its mission even further by highlighting the flavors imparted by different years’ growing conditions and also aging in barrels. “Everything that To’ak is trying to do is to elevate dark chocolate onto the same level as the finest wines or whiskeys of the world,” says To’ak’s CEO James Le Compte. In time for Valentine’s Day, they’ve just introduced tasting dish that come with 18 mini bars that allows you to experience the flavor difference they’re able to highlight when making their chocolate. The kits also come with tasting plates, bamboo utensils and a pairing menu to help guide you through the experience.
AndSons Heart & Hills Chocolate Box
For nearly 40 years, the Covitz family has been selling chocolate in the heart of Beverly Hills, first under Aviva Covitz, who operated an outpost of the Swiss brand Teuscher, and now by her sons Marc and Phil. The later two broke with the Swiss in 2019 to create their own fine chocolates with pastry chef Kriss Harvey, opening AndSons in the same space. Their handcrafted confections are as delicious as they are beautiful. And for Valentine’s Day they’ve partnered with LA artist Abel Marcias for a box that’s an ode to their hometown. Boxes include an assortment of treats including hazelnut praline and cassis, honey and lime ganache, hazelnut gianduja and more. A portion of sales will support Know Your Rights Camp, an organization that supports Black and Brown communities.
Vesta Be My Vegan Valentine Bar Trio
Show a vegan that you love them with Vesta’s specialty bars. The husband-wife duo of Roger Rodriguez and Julia Choi-Rodriguez created their bean to bar and bon-bon chocolate company after both serving successful stints as pastry chefs in Michelin-starred New York restaurants and Julia working as a food stylist for big-name brands. While they’re offering milk chocolate bon bons this Valentine’s they’re also they’re unique vegan white chocolate bars made with ground oat flour, which gives a great mouthfeel to the chocolate without overwhelming the flavors they infuse the bars with like strawberries or roasted coconut.
Sweet Mae’s Stuffed Cookies
Apparently, you can improve upon perfection. Sweet Mae Cookie’s Co.’s founder Tiffany Biddle takes cookies, and inspired by generations of Southern baking in her family, she stuffs them to create thick rounds of goodness. For instance, her sea salt chocolate chunk is stuffed with Nutella or her brown butter lemon dough with white chocolate chips that’s stuffed with cookie butter and topped with a Biscoff. She’s also introducing a red velvet flavor in time for Valentine’s Day as part of her February variety pack offering.
Fran’s Truffle & Caramel Valentine’s Heart Box
While salted caramel is so ubiquitous now you could grab a jar of it made by Smuckers while walking down an aisle in Walmart. But two decades ago that wasn’t the case, chocolatier Fran Bigelow introduced her sea salt caramel chocolates at her eponymous shop in Seattle. Inspired by the France’s salted caramels, she combined that with her fine chocolate to create a sensation. This heart-shaped box is filled with her signature gray salt and smoked-salt caramels, along with other sweets like bittersweet chocolate covered in ganache, a selection of milk chocolate treats and truffles infused raspberry or oolong tea.
Mini Melanie x By Robynblair
Robyn Blair Davidson has teamed up with sisters Melanie and Diana Moss for a colorful collection of cake truffles. Davidson is the artist behind By Robynblair,who has created an Instagram sensation with her candy-inspired creations, like boxes of Nerds suspended in acrylic. She’s lent a vibrant touch to Melanie Moss’s confections. The collection comes with six each of vanilla funfetti truffles and chocolate funfetti. The vanilla is covered in white chocolate, while its companion the gets a dark chocolate coating. Each of them has a surprise crunch of rock candy in the bottom too.