Nothing goes together better than chocolate and Valentine’s Day. With Feb. 14 right around the corner, we’ve scoured the San Francisco Bay Area for the hautest boxes of chocolate for you to give your special someone. Among our finds for top chocolates in SF: a $260 bar of To’ak chocolate and Kollar Chocolates’ 50 Shades of Grey. Hmmm, how stimulating.
1 IfOnly Constellation Chocolate Collection
IfOnly, Trevor Traina's website that makes impossible connections possible, has collaborated with some of the world’s most acclaimed chefs to present the Constellation Chocolate Collection. Each confection is a masterful and stunning creation that quintessentially defines each chef's culinary preferences and point of view. Discover Michael Mina’s sophisticated take on a classic favorite with his delicious caramel, vanilla, and Maldon sea salt blend, or go back to the basics with an exquisite smooth dark truffle with single origin cacao by Traci Des Jardins. (9-pack for $32; 21-pack for $75; 42-pack; $150)
2 To'ak Chocolate
Launched last year, To’ak Chocolate may well be the world’s most rare and sublime chocolate. Not everyone who covets this Ecuadorian treasure will be fortunate enough to receive it. Only 574 bars were made. Each 50 gram bar is priced at $260. [Yes indeed folks, that price is correct.] Each bar is packaged in a hand-crafted hardwood box that is engraved with the individual bar number. The box is made from responsibly-sourced Spanish Elm wood, the same wood that is used to ferment To’ak cacao. The box includes a 116-page booklet that provides a guide to dark chocolate tasting, tells the story behind the sourcing of To’ak cacao beans and illustrates the process of chocolate making. To'ak is available for purchase online as well as limited specialty retailers, including Beltramo’s Wines & Spirits in Menlo Park.
3 Kollar Chocolates
It's no surprise that Chris Kollar, the man behind Kollar Chocolates, was recently voted as the one of the top ten chocolatiers by Dessert Professional Magazine. If you haven't been to his artisan chocolate shop in Yountville, then you're missing out. We're particularly impressed that every chocolate at Kollar Chocolates is made by hand and Kollar strives to use sustainable and local ingredients whenever possible. Making Kollar even a more timely chocolatier, this Valentine’s Day, Kollar Chocolates has made a sinfully delicious box of chocolates – the 50 Shades of Grey box. Cozily restrained in the box are six pieces of caramel dark chocolate truffles covered in various shades of grey chocolate with splatters of pink and red. $12Also, Kollar Chocolates is putting on its 2nd Annual Valentine’s Day Workshop on Feb. 14 from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. ($75). Get your hands dirty in a lustful chocolate making experience designed for inquisitive chocoholics. Kollar will guide couples through the fun and romance of making hand-rolled chocolate truffles while sipping on CADE Estate wine. Ooh la la!
6525 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599
4 Il Cioccolato
100% of chocolate lovers agree, Il Cioccolato is a dream. With a variety of artisan Italian chocolate bars, it's the perfect way to celebrate the decadence of rich, high quality chocolate. This gift basket comes in a signature AG Ferrari red box, wrapped with a cream bow, and includes: Amedei Toscano Black 70%, Amedei Toscano Brown Milk 32%, Perugina Milk choc. Bars, and Perugina Dark semisweet bars. Available at AG Ferrari, which has six Bay Area cafes/markets. $25.99
688 Mission St. (at 3rd St.), San Francisco, CA 94105
5 Ghiradelli Chocolate Company
How haute is this? Ghiradelli Chocolate Company recently debuted its “Hearts in San Francisco” limited edition chocolate bars and partnered with San Francisco General Hospital Foundation in honor of the 2015 “Hearts in San Francisco” public art project. “Hearts in San Francisco” raises money to support vital programs and initiatives at San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center. Ghirardelli Chocolate launched three “Hearts in San Francisco” Chocolate Bars, featuring several of the iconic heart sculptures on the packaging: Intense Dark Cherry Tango, Intense Dark Sea Salt Soiree and Intense Dark Twilight Delight. A portion of every “Hearts in San Francisco” Chocolate Bar sold is donated to the San Francisco General Hospital Foundation. Pick up your bars exclusively at any of the five Ghirardelli Ice Cream & Chocolate Shops in San Francisco and at Macy’s Union Square.
900 North Point, San Francisco, CA 94109