Nothing says love quite like a box of chocolates, but this year why not skip the ho-hum sampler in the heart-shaped box and opt for handmade, premium chocolates from local chocolatiers? Great for Valentine’s Day, these confections are also a wonderful indulgence just for yourself or as a special after-dinner treat with your family. Whether you like your chocolate in bar, truffle, or cocoa form, we’ll have you saying “I do!” to our list of top shops. Read on for the sweet deets.

photo: Dallmann Fine Chocolates

Dallmann Fine Chocolates

Located at The Headquarters at Seaport Village, this chocolatier has enough tempting treats to guarantee your first trip won't be your last. Tremendously beautiful truffles come in exotic flavors like Cardamom & Blood Orange, Coconut Curry and Strawberry Balsamic. You can build your own box of hand-selected truffles or buy one of their pre-filled sets (including a special Valentine's Day Box). They also sell a variety of chocolate-covered nuts, caramel sauces and cocoa mixes.

Dallmann Fine Chocolates
789 W. Harbor Dr.
San Diego, Ca 92101
619-238-0045
Online: dallmanconfections.com

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Carlsbad Chocolate Bar

This North County chocolate shop has everything your sweet tooth desires, including an extensive variety of truffles and other treats. Favorites includes Milk Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel, Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups and Nonpareils. Many chocolates are made in-house, while others are imported from select chocolatiers from around the country. If chocolate makes you thirsty, they also have a full coffee bar and selection of wines.

Carlsbad Chocolate Bar
2998 State St.
Carlsbad, Ca 92008
760-434-4479
Online: carlsbadchocolatebar.com

photo: Andrea's Truffles

Andrea's Truffles

The motto here is "From my heart to your tummy" and once you take a look at their gorgeous chocolates, you'll agree. Andrea, a San Diego native, partners with local breweries and produce suppliers for many of her creations, including Bacon Whisky, Orange Mocha and Vanilla Bean Lemon. Although she doesn't have a standalone shop, her artisanal chocolates can be found at many establishments around town, including Mike Hess Brewing Company, the Coronado Marriott and Grant's Marketplace. Check out her website for a full list.

Andrea's Truffles
858-299-6677
Online: andreastruffles.com

Chocolate Haus

This chocolate shop sells a variety of irresistible confections at its Pacific Beach location. Universally beloved Buckeyes (peanut butter and chocolate), Cinnamon Bun Truffles (brown sugar, cinnamon and white chocolate fudge) and Grand Marnier (dark chocolate, orange zest, cognac) are just a few of the truffles on the menu. They also sell nut brittle and classic Turtle chocolates, as well as a variety of ice cream.

Chocolate Haus
947 Turquoise St.
San Diego, Ca 92109
858-488-4857
Online: chocolatehauspb.com

Eclipse Chocolate Bar and Bistro

If you'd like to treat your special loved one to brunch and dessert, this South Park favorite has you covered. The menu features pancakes, quiche and salads, as well as an array of drinking chocolates (think of a thicker, richer hot cocoa). Infusions include Chile Burnt Caramel and Smoke Brown Sugar. They have a wide assortment of caramels, truffles and toffee, as well as their popular Build-a-Bar program. For $10/bar you can make your own bar with a variety of fruits, nuts and spices from around the world.

Eclipse Chocolate Bar and Bistro
2145 Fern St.
San Diego, Ca 92104
619-578-2984
Online: eclipsechocolate.com

Sweet Petite Confections

Michelle Lomelin launched Sweet Petite Confections after leaving a two-decades-long career in fashion design. In her role as chocolatier and shop owner, Michelle creates and sells bonbons, meltaways, barks, salted caramels, custom chocolate business cards and ice cream, and teaches candy-making classes to families. Don't miss her upcoming Make Sweets for Your Sweetheart chocolate making class where parent/child teams will create nearly 1.5 pounds of confections: a tray of filled chocolates with guest-favorite flavors like salted caramel and peanut butter cup as well as cabernet caramel and spicy serrano ganache made by Lomelin herself. Students will also select from more than two dozen ingredients as they personalize a chocolate bark – with options including freeze dried raspberries and strawberries alongside savory pretzels, potato chips, nuts, candied bacon and more!

Sweet Petite Confections
3582A Mount Acadia Blvd.
San Diego, Ca 92111
Online: sweetpetiteconfections.com

Tell us your favorite spot for indulgent chocolate treats. 

—Michelle Franklin

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