The Best Chocolatiers and Chocolate Shops in the USA

Pop into the Askinosie chocolate factory in downtown Missouri and try the delicious hazelnut spread
Pop into the Askinosie chocolate factory in downtown Missouri and try the delicious hazelnut spread | © jay goebel / Alamy
Photo of H.C. Hamblin
28 April 2021

Over the past decade, artisan chocolatiers in the USA have raised the bar as Americans have grown tired of mass-produced candy bars. All across the country, small chocolatiers are going back to the roots of the craft, creating small-batch confections with heart and intent. Here’s out pick of the best chocolatiers and chocolate shops in the USA.

Harlem Chocolate Factory

Dessert Shop, Authentic
Map View

Think posh chocolates and you’ll probably imagine classic flavour combinations of hazelnut, coffee, perhaps Champagne. At the Harlem Chocolate Factory, you’ll find fillings that could only have originated in New York City. After-School Snack bonbons reinvent the peanut butter and jelly (jam) idea: milk chocolate encasing strawberry chipotle fig jam and peanut almond praline. Sweet Potato Pie truffle comprises a roasted sweet-potato ganache rolled in ground pecans.

Bon Bon Bon

Dessert Shop, Dessert
Map View

Good chocolates should be as delightful visually as they are delicious and that’s certainly the case here in Detroit. The little square-shaped chocolates are miniature works of art, as well as containing imaginative flavour combinations. Lil Hottie is cayenne-infused honey, arbol and Vietnamese cinnamon dark chocolate ganache and smoked paprika encased in a milk-chocolate shell. Pudge Frownie’ (a play on fudge brownie) is crowned with a frowning rice-paper face.

Dandelion Chocolate

Candy Store, Dessert Shop, American
Map View
This San Francisco chocolatier treats its cocoa beans in the same way a boutique winery would treat its grapes. It takes a single-origin batch of cocoa beans from a grower and produces limited-edition bars of chocolate, which explains why its bars are so expensive: a pack of three bars starts at $35 (£25). You can also pre-order cakes and pastries for collection or delivery, all made with their exceptionally high-quality chocolate.

Vosges

Dessert Shop, Dessert
Map View

Perhaps the largest company on our list, Vosges Haut-Chocolat has risen dramatically in popularity since 1997, the year it began. Inspired by flavours from around the world, the chocolate bars and truffles are as pretty to the eye as they are delicious to taste. Among the most creative flavour combinations are a cinnamon and sugar bacon bar and an African red tea with tart cherry bar. You can also pair a box of truffles with a bottle of wine.

Jacques Torres Chocolate

Cafe, French
Map View
Jacques Torres Hudson St 1
Jacques Torres Hudson St 1 | Courtesy of Jacques Torres Chocolate
Chef Jacques Torres uses his experience as a pastry chef to create chocolate works of art using popular ingredients. You can sample the combinations at any of his New York locations, as well as trying ice-cream sandwiches and his special hot chocolate – a blend of dark chocolate and fiery chili pepper. Although the company has experienced huge growth, the gourmet chocolates are still hand crafted.

Theo Chocolate

Dessert Shop, Dessert, $$$
Map View
Chocolate bars and coffee for sale at Theo Chocolate Company
© Paul Christian Gordon / Alamy

The folks at Theo Chocolate are committed to protecting the environment while turning out superb chocolates. Located in Seattle, they use only organic and fair-trade ingredients. All the products are GMO-free (genetically modified organism), and the company ensures that its methods of production are socially responsible. Theo also offers chocolate-making classes.

Amano

Dessert Shop, Dessert
Map View

Just 40 miles south of Salt Lake City, Amano’s artisan chocolate is worthy of applause. Extensive research has been conducted into the origin, harvesting, roasting, and making of chocolate. The cocoa beans, which are sourced worldwide from Ecuador, Dominican Republic, Peru and Papua New Guinea among others, are processed to become high-quality chocolate bars.

Patric Chocolate

Dessert Shop, Dessert
Map View

With accolades from the likes of Gourmet Magazine and Food and Wine Magazine, Patric Chocolate is big in the world of craft chocolate-making. The company began in 2006, making bars with an eye on quality, craftsmanship and sustainability. From its early years, Patric has been involved with organisations like the Craft Chocolate Makers of America. Patric produces chocolate bars with intriguing flavours: try the raspberry-balsamic pear, black liquorice and red coconut curry.

Castronovo Chocolate

Dessert Shop, Dessert
Map View
Bourbon Toffee Cocoa Nib Bark - Castronovo Chocolate
Courtesy of Castronovo Chocolate

Castronovo is based in a small town on the east coast of Florida but its popularity has grown nationwide. The company has won a number of awards for its exceptional products. Beyond simple, single-origin bars, the company also makes a variety of truffles and seasonal chocolates.

Askinosie Chocolate

Dessert Shop, Dessert
Map View
Shawn Askinosie shows off cocoa beans that are used to make chocolate at Askinosie Chocolate in Springfield, Missouri, April 20, 2010. Askinosie travels around the world, meets farmers and gets the beans direct from the source. They are roasted in house a
© Sipa US / Alamy

Family-owned Askinosie Chocolate is passionate chocolate and community and has focused on establishing relationships with farmers, neighbours and customers. As well as teaching school children how to make chocolate, they buy direct from farmers. Out of its factory in Springfield, Missouri, the company crafts an array of products including bars, nibs, cocoa powder, and chocolate beverages. Askinosie also makes a chocolate hazelnut spread which is excellent.

FIKA Chocolate

Dessert Shop, Dessert
Map View
Chocolate assortment by Hakan Martensson of FIKA Chokolad of New York. Martensson won a gold medal in the 2008 Culinary Olympics
© Ed Lefkowicz / VWPics / Alamy

New Yorkers have come to know and love FIKA as a coffee, pastry and chocolate shop. Every day, the brand serves fresh brews and bites from 15 locations. Behind the scenes, craftsmen make most menu items from scratch. The company employs a master chocolatier from Europe and makes everything in-house and by hand for all the FIKA locations.

French Broad Chocolates

Dessert Shop, Dessert
Map View

The French Broad Chocolates was started by a husband and wife team who opened a small cafe in Costa Rica. After a few successful years, the couple moved to southeastern US. From there, they have grown the business into one of the finest bean-to-bar chocolate companies in the country. The company makes bars, truffles and other treats which you can buy from their chocolate lounge in Asheville.

Alex Allen contributed additional reporting to this article.

These recommendations were updated on April 28, 2021 to keep your travel plans fresh.

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