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10 Chocolate Treats For Valentine’s Day & Beyond

February 10, 2016

Valentine’s Day is near, and it’s your sacred duty to do something sweet for your sweetie. If you plan on showing affection through chocolate, bear in mind no ordinary cocoa-based candy, hunk, or baked good is sufficient. This needs to be something memorable, whether it takes the form of a sultry restaurant dessert or a finely crafted store-bought treat. Fortunately, Newport Beach provides plenty of chocolate options to ensure you don’t inadvertently make a mockery of love’s most sacred day. Better yet, these chocolate options are all available year round.

Zov's - Chocolate BombZov’s

Zov Karamardian’s baked goods have enjoyed a cult following for nearly two decades, long before she opened her Newport Coast outpost. Zov’s luscious Milk Chocolate Bomb demonstrates why this is the case. The treat’s name of may sound a bit aggressive, but its creation is quite delicate, as chocolate ganache and a sugar cookie crust envelop a central nugget of crème brulee. Flavors combine to detonate an explosion of sweet, layered goodness on your palate. This is a perfect bite to dig into this Valentine’s Day, even if you don’t have a Valentine to share its excellence.

Basilic

Valentine’s Day falls on a Sunday, which poses a conundrum: Do you stick with tradition, or do you cheat and celebrate a day early? Choosing the latter opens the possibility to dine at this famously intimate Balboa Island venue, where an evening of fine French cuisine can culminate with their caramelized pecan walnut chocolate tart with a crème Anglaise. This chocolate-centric treat is sweet, slightly nutty, richly decadent, and provides sufficient proof that French cuisine possesses the power to woo.

Douceurs de Paris - Black is Black Chocolate AssortmentDouceures de Paris

If you’re giving your beloved an arrangement of chocolate goodies in mid-February, you better make sure it’s truly special. Fortunately, the Black is Black Chocolate Assortment from this Corona del Mar boutique eliminates any chance of securing a by-the-numbers box. Inside the gift’s sexy black and bronze container, you’ll find a wealth of artisan dark chocolate delights, from chocolate squares with cocoa beans to salted butter caramel chocolate balls. This tasty package is sure to impress even the most discerning chocoholic.

Eat Chow - Choco Taco - Facebook ImageEat Chow

Your inner weekend warrior may feel too exhausted to dress up for a full-blown romantic night on the town. If so, this low-key joint near the Huntington Beach border is a welcome option. Coming here gives you and your love the chance to split a Choco Taco, one of the city’s most unique desserts. The deceptively simple treat involves a stuffed tortilla, except in this case, the sugar and cinnamon-coated shell cradles a generous helping of chocolate chip ice cream. A drizzle of fresh caramel and chocolate sauce top this dish for an extra bit of decadence. This is the perfect Valentine’s Day dessert if you find yourself craving blissful happiness over elaborate elegance.

hot fudge sundae - long island_smallGulfstream

There’s something to be said about a chocolate-based treat reminiscent of young love. That’s what makes the house-made hot fudge sundae at this popular Coast Highway destination so special. The presentation is probably a touch more elegant than the first sundae you shared, but the unmistakable flavors of yore are very much present. If your idea of romance is to find ways to rekindle youth’s spark, indulging in this meal-ender is a must.

R + D Kitchen

Chocolate is symbolic of the Valentine’s Day season because it’s so sensual. The silky texture, intoxicating aroma, and flavor notes that expertly bridge the gap between sweet and bitter have an uncanny ability to titillate on a level other foods can only aspire. The Pot de Crème with Whipped Cream and Grated Chocolate that this Fashion Island destination crafts showcases chocolate’s sinful nature in all of its sumptuous glory. The interplay between the bowl’s velvet-smooth cocoa-based custard and its fluffy cream top creates a scintillating complex flavor tango that almost feels naughty. Think of this as the dessert version of a Marvin Gaye record.

Harborside - Chocolate Decadence Cake a la ModeHarborside

Newport Harbor’s perpetually romantic waters provide the city with a romantic Valentine’s Day backdrop. There’s no better way to tap into this watery ardor than by snagging a window seat at this legendary space and finishing your meal with a sensual slice of Chocolate Decadence Cake a la mode. Decadence is not just a buzzword: The cake’s deep chocolate notes are further intensified by the rich, dark chocolate sauce that smothers the slice in totality. A generous dollop of whipped cream makes sure you or your sweetie don’t go into cocoa overload, although that may not necessarily be a bad thing.

'lette Macarons - Caribbean Chocolate‘lette Macarons

Macarons may be the most ideal sweet you can pick up on Valentine’s Day. They’re an undeniably trendy treat, yet still unique enough to not immediately pop into your head as a February 14th gift option. This distinctive nature is a big reason why the Caribbean Chocolate macarons from this Fashion Island shop is a terrific edible gift. The other big reason is that they are immensely flavorful, as the treat’s two chocolate chip-flecked halves sandwich a perfect slathering of chocolate ganache. This sumptuous present will surprise your significant other as much as it pleases.

Casey's Cupcakes - Decadent Dark Chocolate CupcakeCasey’s Cupcakes

Cupcakes are not just delicious. They’re inherently whimsical. After all, cupcakes are essentially fun-sized cakes, and their diminutive stature makes them a joy to consume. Their small frames can also pack intense chocolate notes, which is evident in this bustling Fashion Island shop’s decadent dark chocolate cupcake. The hand-held goodie straddles the line between delicate and diabolical. Shavings of dark chocolate icing overflow from its rich, chip-infused dark chocolate base. This is the proper amount of over the top.

Gelato Paradiso - Doppio CioccolatoGelato Paradiso

Having a perfect romantic outing doesn’t automatically equate to dining out. For instance, you and your beloved can spend time satiating each other’s inner shopaholic at Fashion Island. Sharing a scoop of Doppio Cioccolato at this popular gelato shop is an excellent way to add chocolate to your excursion. There’s no shortage of the star ingredient here, as the thick, creamy chocolate gelato touts generous flecks of extra dark cocoa. This simple treat is as complex as any strong relationship can be at times.

Written by @visitnewportbeach

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