America’s 30 Best Chocolate Shops

Source: elisfanclub / Flickr

5. Theo Chocolate
> Location: Seattle, Washington
> Average Yelp Rating: 4.5

Theo’s flagship store and factory (tours and classes are offered) was founded in 2005, and, according to the Theo website, the company subsequently became the first organic fair-trade-certified chocolate maker in North America. Offerings include a variety of bars, both flavored and otherwise; peanut butter and almond butter cups; chocolate-covered caramels and marshmallows; and chocolate for baking and drinking.

Source: L.A. Burdick Handmade Chocolates / Facebook

4. L.A. Burdick Handmade Chocolates
> Location: Cambridge, Massachusetts
> Average Yelp Rating: 4.5

Established in New York City in 1987 and now headquartered in Walpole, New Hampshire — there are Burdick shops in both those cities as well as Chicago and Boston, plus this one in Cambridge — this is a chocolatier whose reputation was largely built on mice. Chocolate mice, of course — tiny little creatures with string tails, inspired by those founder Larry Burdick helped make working at a confectionery in Bern, Switzerland, years ago. There’s much more to the selection than that, however — a wide choice of bars, individual chocolates and assortments, specially themed holiday novelties (like chocolate turkeys for Thanksgiving), and even, to complement the mice, chocolate elephants, proceeds from the sale of which go to an elephant rescue program in Kenya.

Source: Photo by Leland S. via Yelp

3. Manoa Chocolate Hawaii
> Location: Kailua, Hawaii
> Average Yelp Rating: 5

Hawaii is the only state in the U.S. that can grow cacao on a commercial basis, and this bean-to-bar chocolate maker in Honolulu County uses locally grown beans whenever possible. What they call their classic chocolate bar collection includes a “dark milk chocolate” bar made with goat’s milk, a dark chocolate entry made with Molokai sea salt, and one made with rum-soaked cacaococoa nibs. Cocoa powder, chocolate tea, and a solid one-pound block of chocolate are also available.

Source: Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

2. Dandelion Chocolate
> Location: San Francisco, California
> Average Yelp Rating: 4.5

This bean-to-bar chocolate factory was opened by a couple of chocolate hobbyists in 2010. Classic bars containing high percentages of cacao from Belize, Ecuador, Madagascar, Vietnam, Sierra Leone, and elsewhere anchor the collection here. More unusual items include black sesame toffee brittle with chocolate, chocolate-based cocktail bitters, and chocolate-covered crickets.

Source: storygoil / Flickr

1. Ginger Elizabeth Chocolates
> Location: Sacramento, California
> Average Yelp Rating: 4.5

Ginger Elizabeth Hahn worked under noted French pastry chef and chocolatier Jacques Torres and other masters of the craft before opening a wholesale chocolate operation in 2005, followed by this retail shop in 2008. (A second shop opened in San Francisco in 2017.) Hahn sells attractive gift boxes, a selection of bars both straightforward and imaginatively flavored (one has caramelized oats, pecans, and Bing cherries; another involved peanuts, wildflower honey, and graham crackers), and macarons — some filled with chocolate ganache.