Rich, indulgent, decadent. When did chocolate and romance become a “thing”? Though we may have surpassed the days where a guy would show up with flowers and candy (we’ll still take a good ol’ fashioned box of Whitman’s chocolates anytime), the artisanal chocolate scene is poppin’ off, much like our frequent candy cravings. Read on if you, like us, want to be in the chocolate know no matter where you go. We’re here for you and all your cacao cravings.
San Francisco/Dandelion Chocolate is a bean-to-bar chocolate factory in the heart of the Mission in S.F. Known for their small-batch chocolate, this place has the Bay Area buzzing over their go-to products including cacao caramelized almonds, sea salt caramels and rich roasted cocoa beans.
Los Angeles/Thriving in LA since 1950, Compartes gourmet chocolates are made from scratch by hand every day by a small team of chocolatiers and chocolate artists, using fresh natural ingredients from local farmer’s markets. This might sound “like, so LA” but take our word for it: their peanut butter honey sea salt truffles will change your entire world.
New York City/This NYC-based bearded brother duo first made a name for themselves when the story broke that they’d built their own boat to sail back and forth to Caribbean Islands to source only the purest, most untouched cacao beans. Now, a mere 5 years later, Mast Brothers has become one of the biggest players on the artisanal chocolate scene and it’s not hard to see why. With beautifully wrapped, hand-crafted flavors like smoke, almond butter, olive oil and goat milk chocolate, these bars are a must-try. Their factory, located in the historic Brooklyn Navy Yard, is an experience for the mind, body and soul.
Dallas/Dude, where’s my chocolate? Okay, now that that’s off our chest, Dude, Sweet Chocolate is seriously one of Dallas’s cutest spots. They concoct, manufacture, distribute, and retail dark chocolate inspired creations including fudges, truffles, toffees, nuts, artisan chocolates, and lots of other cool things you would never think to mix with chocolate including something called Hippie Crack. Take our word for it.
Chicago/ The European-based Leonidas is more than 100 years old, and still makes chocolates using the traditional methods of its Belgian founder. The chocolates, plus hard-to-find favorites like candied orange peels and Pâte de Fruits, are flown in weekly during the busy season.
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