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To your heart’s content: Premium Alabama chocolatiers have sweet Valentine’s Day gifts

If red is the color of Valentine's Day, then chocolate is the flavor. Chocolate is a gift that symbolizes love on a day dedicated to lovers.

In the U.S. alone, people have spent more than $2.5 billion on chocolate through February 14, according to industry analysts. Among them are more than 38 million heart-shaped boxes containing sweets made from dark cacao, milk cacao and white cacao.

Historians say St. Valentine's Day's association with love dates back to a poem written by Geoffrey Chaucer in the late 1300s. Around that time, the Aztec people of what is now Mexico celebrated chocolate made from native beans as a gift from the gods. Their rulers drank it as an aphrodisiac.

British chocolatier Richard Cadbury is credited with selling the first heart-shaped boxes of his chocolates for Valentine's Day gifts in 1868. The Cadbury brothers were true visionaries. They created Bites to use up leftover cocoa butter from making drinkable chocolate. It was very popular in England.

Valentine's themed chocolates are everywhere now, but not all are created equal. You usually get what you pay for. Small-batch premium chocolates made with world-class ingredients will outperform mass market brands.

And if that treat is made in your town, it's worth earning extra brownie points. Check out fine chocolatiers from around Alabama.

Cioccolata (Birmingham)

Cathy D'Agostino uses ethically sourced cacao from farms in Latin America in her handcrafted chocolates. They have unusual shapes like frogs and mushrooms, and come in flavors ranging from dark chocolate to dulce de leche. Gift boxes include the 4-piece “4 My Valentine'' ($14), as well as 9-, 15-, and 36-piece assortments ($28 to $126). Pre-order your Valentine's She Box from February 7th until February 14th to receive it. You'll probably need to set up a GPS map locator to find it, but it's worth the search.

701 37th street south

Killwins (Hoover)

Hoover is the only Alabama location for the 77-year-old Michigan-based chocolate, fudge and ice cream maker. However, franchises also exist across the border in Pensacola (Florida) and Columbus (Ga.). Our boxed chocolate collection includes cream, sea salt and sugar-free, as well as a variety of flavors and fillings. Truffles and chocolate bars are also appealing. Some Valentine's Day assortments ($16.99-$131.99) come in heart-shaped boxes. Chocolate is just the beginning of Kilwins sweets.The shipping fee is Available.

5220 Peridot Place

peter brook (Vestavia Hills, Tuscaloosa)

The 40-year-old franchise, based in Jacksonville, Florida, has two locations in Alabama. The company specializes in small-batch European-style artisan chocolates, including truffles, cherry cordials, chocolate-dipped fruit, popcorn, and pretzels. These are packaged in several Valentine's Day packages with heart-shaped and decorative boxes and themed buckets ($13-$150). It is possible to send online order.

3112 Heights Village (Cahaba Heights)

1530 McFarland Boulevard North (Tuscaloosa)

pizzelle sweets (Huntsville)

The self-proclaimed “chocolate witches” at Pizzelle's create treats that are as much a feast for the eyes as they are for the taste buds. Her co-owners and sisters Michelle Novosel and Caitlin Lyon are certified professional chocolatiers, and Novosel also teaches arts and crafts to culinary students. Pizzels, which opened in 2013, sells colorful chocolates in a variety of shapes and designs, large bonbons and chocolate bars (boxes range from $6.90 to $75.90).Order locally as soon as possible pick outor have them It has been shipped.

2211 Seminole Drive

Three Georges Fine Southern Chocolate (cell phone)

Three George's has been satisfying Mobile's sweet tooth since 1917, when George Papolampoulos, George Pope and George Spero opened a downtown lunch counter and candy store. The building in which the store is located on Rue Dauphin and Rue Joachim dates back more than 150 years to 1866. In addition to boxes and tins of chocolate-covered nuts and pretzels, we also sell assorted chocolate sets (some sugar-free). , Cordial, Turtle ($19.95 – $56.95).Shipping is available in the following ways online order.

226 Dauphin Street

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