Who doesn't love chocolate? Whether it's Valentine's Day, Mother's Day or just the second Tuesday of the month, there's always a good reason for chocolate. St. Louis has dozens of shops offering fine chocolate confections, and even a few restaurants that are chocolate themed. Here are my picks for the top ten places to go for St. Louis' best chocolate.
When you mention gourmet chocolate in St. Louis, Bissinger's is probably the first candy shop to come to mind. The first Bissinger's store opened in St. Louis in 1927, and the company's been creating beautiful handmade chocolates and candies ever since. Bissinger's offers a wide variety of truffles and bon bons, but its chocolate dipped fruit is legendary.
Locations: Plaza Frontenac and 32 Maryland Plaza
Kakao has developed a loyal following by using the finest, all-natural ingredients to create its artisan chocolates. Chocolate-lovers can indulge in a variety of truffles, brownies, barks and other confections.
2301 South Jefferson
Photo courtesy Chocolate, Chocolate, Chocolate Company
The name pretty much says it all. The passion at Chocolate, Chocolate, Chocolate Company is indeed chocolate. You can find the finest milk and dark chocolates mixed with nuts, nougat, fruit and more. Signature chocolates include heavenly hash, molasses puffs and chocolate covered strawberries.12 Locations in the St. Louis Area
There are many reasons to make a trip to Crown Candy Kitchen. This candy shop and soda fountain has been a St. Louis tradition since 1913. Many customers come for the fantastic malts, shakes and sundaes, but don't miss out on the handmade candy as well. There are all kinds of truffles and nut clusters, but Crown Candy is known for its solid chocolate figures. Think hearts for Valentine's Day, bunnies for Easter and Santa for Christmas.
1401 St. Louis Avenue
If you want more than just candy, then try Bailey's Chocolate Bar in Lafayette Square. St. Louisans love its chocolate themed menu, but also its warm and romantic atmosphere. That's why they consistenty rank it among the best places in St. Louis for a first date. Start with drinks like a chocolate martini or chocolate vodka and end your meal with one of their incredible desserts. Some favorites are Bailey's chocolate brownie, milk chocolate bread pudding or its flourless molten cake.1915 Park
Photo by Robert Brown, courtesy Lindsay's Chocolate Cafe
Chocolate and coffee make a great combination, and you'll find excellent options for both at the Chocolate Cafe and Coffee House in O'Fallon, Missouri. The cafe is open for breakfast so you can start your day with chocolate chip Belgian waffles or a chocolate muffin or scone. There is also a full menu of soups, salads and sandwiches. But be sure to visit at night (they're open until 10:00 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays) and try one of its decadent chocolate cakes or a chocolate martini. Even simple items, like its cookies and brownies, are obviously the creations of someone with a passion for chocolate.1120 Technology Drive, Suite 113A
7. Merb's CandiesMerb's is another candy shop with a long history in St. Louis. It opened in the 1920's in its original location on South Grand and now has two other locations in St. Louis County. Merb's is filled with hundreds of kinds of candy, including wonderful handmade chocolates. Customers line up for the chocolate covered strawberries in the spring and Bionic Apples in the fall.
4000 South Grand
Mention Bankhead Chocolate and the one thing that comes to mind is turtles, the chocolate kind I mean. Bankhead's most popular candy is called a Chocolate Drop Turtle. It's caramel and pecans topped with a dollop of smooth milk chocolate. Delicious.Locations: Bowling Green and Troy, MO
Photo courtesy Cioccolato
Cioccolato specializes in selling gourmet chocolate from around the world. You'll find the latest creations from French, Swiss and Belgian chocolatiers and high quality chocolate bars for nibbling. Cioccolato also sells wine to go with your favorite sweet treat.816 Olive Street
Photo courtesy Lake Forest Confections
Lake Forest Confections uses old fashioned recipes to turn out some of the best handmade chocolates in St. Louis. Tempt yourself with raspberry or hazelnut truffles or chocolate petit fours. When you taste any of the candies at Lake Forest, you'll know they were made with the finest ingredients to please any chocolate lover.7801 Clayton Road
Photo courtesy The Chocolate Affair
The Chocolate Affair candy store is located on the main floor of the Tibbetts House Bed and Breakfast in Highland, Illinois. The shop and the B&B celebrate all things chocolate. Spend the night and enjoy a chocolate themed breakfast, fresh baked chocolate chip cookies or just stop by the candy shop for a box of your favorite truffles to take home.801 9th Street