In search of the perfect chocolates for Valentine’s Day

When it comes to those heart-shaped boxes of chocolate, is there really a difference between the chocolates? Is it worth it to splurge? As there are so many homegrown chocolatiers, I hit up the local convenience store to buy up all the different brands of chocolate most available to us for Valentine’s Day. I suffered glances from shoppers whom I can only imagine think I had just been dumped and was drowning my sorrows in a lake of chocolate, all to determine which one is the best. I also enlisted the family to have the male, female and teen perspective. Here are the results of our blind taste test:

The One Everyone Recognized

Every one of us took a bite and immediately recognized Hershey’s Milk Chocolate. It has a distinctive taste that we all love (especially in S’mores) but when it came to our samples of chocolate it felt “more like it was made in a factory” and “not as fancy” as the other chocolates. Cost: $0.17 an ounce

The One No One Could Taste

All three of us had the same reaction: Lindt’s Milk Chocolate didn’t have any flavor compared to the others. Seriously, having it after other great bites made this chocolate tasting quite disappointing. Who knew chocolate could be so bland? And what is worse is that is cost more than others. $1.58 an ounce

The Milkiest of Them All

Our taste of Cadbury’s Milk Chocolate bar found the chocolate milky and creamy. It was super smooth. The teen, however, was unimpressed and called it “alright.” Cost: $.99 an ounce

You Never Know What You’re Gonna Get

It’s difficult to judge a box of chocolates when you don’t know what you’re going to get. Still, the only complaints eating Russell Stover’s Assorted Chocolates were when one of us got a flavor we didn’t like. We had re-dos if we needed a new flavor and we were not disappointed in the candies, just not wowed. Cost: $0.92 an ounce

Richer Than Rich

Lindt’s truffles performed much better than their plain chocolate—guess they need something inside to compliment the chocolate. The truffles were rich and flavorful and we preferred them to the Russell Stover assortment. Cost: $0.68 an ounce

The Perfect Bite

Ghirardelli’s squares filled with caramel were so silky smooth and yummy that they beat out any of the assorted box of chocolates by a long shot. Thinner than the assorted pieces and truffles, they provided just the right bite combo of chocolate and caramel and didn’t overwhelm. Cost:  $0.76 an ounce

Hands-Down Favorite

A unanimous favorite was our taste of Dove’s Silky Smooth milk chocolate. “More chocolatey” said the teen, while we felt it had more bite and was sweeter than the other chocolates. Cost:  $0.99 an ounce

When you consider that Hershey’s chocolate is the cheapest and the most expensive was our least favorite, a middle-of-the-road chocolate should be perfectly fine as a gift. It’s the thought that counts, anyway. But, to be sure, perhaps you’ll want to conduct your own taste test?

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About Lissa Poirot

Lissa Poirot is an award-winning lifestyle writer who covers health, wellness and travel. Her work has appeared on websites such as WebMD, FamilyVacationCritic and the New York Times, as well as print in magazines including Vegetarian Times and Arthritis Today.

View all posts by Lissa Poirot

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