Valentine’s Day, Couple’s Curse, or Chocovore’s Paradise– call it what you will, but chocolate sales are up by 8.2% compared to last year around the world (Source: National Consumer Census; February 8th, 2011), and more couples are defining relationships for better or worse. The day when most the most number of relationships are formed on Facebook is on Valentine’s Day (on Facebook, 50.7 million knots are tied) and over 30.9 million couples go their separate ways. (Source: Facebook, 2010).
So whether you’re looking to form a relationship, strengthen an already existing one with a significant other/family, or treat yourself, here are some Berkeleyan chocolatiers to give you (or your loved one) a toothache to remember.
#1. Chocolatier Blue
Chocolatier Blue carries a variety of flavors, but Chris experiments with a variety of flavors depending on what organic produce is available around Berkeley. He oftenrecommends Sage Honey, and the Hazelnut, a nutty classic. For a novel experience, try the Chili chocolate infused with dark chocolate, or the Palet d’or. Passion Fruit Caramel and Grapefruit with Rosemary are both popular fruit choices as well. A Valentine’s special flavor, Sex on the Beach, mixes Ciroc vodka with pineapple, cranberry, and crème de cassis for a classy Valentine’s bite.
Address: 1964 University Avenue (University and Milvia), Berkeley, CA
Hours: Daily, from 11:30~6
Price Range: Depending on box (5 chocolates, 10 chocolates, 25 chocolates)
#2. Xocolate Bar
This definitely isn’t your usual chocolate store. An unusual aroma fills the store once you enter– and some may be thrown off by the almost dingy atmosphere of this store off in Solano avenue (you’ll either have to drive or take the 18 bus down). But make no mistake– this place has good chocolate.
Address: 1709 Solano Ave, Berkeley, CA.
Hours: Tu~Th, Sun: 12pm~6pm; Fri~Sat 12pm~8pm.
Price range: between $8 to $35, depending on the size of your purchase.
#3. Coracao Chocolates
Get your sneakers on, because you won’t find these chocolates anywhere except the Berkeley Farmer’s Market, or you’ll have to order online.
For the by-the-piece offerings, the Chocolate Coconut Dreams are sweet enough to satisfy your chocolate craving for an entire 24 hours. The Caramaels are a beautiful take on the classic, in round cupcake-like containers. Their Chocolate Hearts are famous for incorporating organic, fair-trade peanuts, and taste sinfully delicious. Last but not least, get your hands on the Mama Filled Chocolate Bars, filled with melted peanut butter or kaffir lime caramel. Whatever the filling, you can’t go wrong.
Address: the Berkeley Farmer’s Market
Price Range: between $3~11 for by-the-piece, $7~50 for the assorted tins.
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