One-of-a-Kind Chocolate Gifts for Valentine's Day

Photo by: Steven Torres
Love Bugs-
John & Kira's hand-painted Lovebugs will set hearts aflutter. The Ladybug & Bee Tower ($49) contains 12 tricolored, dark-chocolate ladybugs (mint, raspberry, and honey... more 
Photo by: Steven Torres
Love Bugs-
John & Kira's hand-painted Lovebugs will set hearts aflutter. The Ladybug & Bee Tower ($49) contains 12 tricolored, dark-chocolate ladybugs (mint, raspberry, and honey lavender) and six salted honey caramel bees. John & Kira are committed to sourcing ingredients from local and family farms, and they support community projects, including urban school garden programs in Philadelphia and Chicago. less 
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Thu, Oct 6, 2011 3:01 PM EDT

Think Outside the Heart-Shaped Box

Thirty-six million heart-shaped boxes of chocolates are sold every year for Valentine's Day. That's a lot of sweets. And sweet intentions. But far too many of them are cookie-cutter, generic gifts-predictably packaged culinary afterthoughts.

Sure, there is something special about receiving a box of decadent chocolates, no matter where they're from, and pulling back the layers of tissue paper, soaking up the sweetly intoxicating smell, and taking in the visual splendor of the smooth, glossy treats inside. But Valentine's chocolate need not be dull and predictable. Or old-fashioned.

To help you shop for your own sweetie, we've assembled a collection of quirky Valentine's Day chocolates, all of which break out of that little red box you've settled for in years past. Our collection of gift ideas features crispy dark-chocolate pearls, adorably fresh "love bugs," romantic chocolate-covered fortune cookies, and even a few alluring chocolate oysters. And while all chocolates are considered aphrodisiacs, you should be happy to hear that we did not include edible underwear or any other gratuitously garish chocolate confections. To see our top gift picks, check out the gallery above.

Styling by Heather Tyree, Photography by Steven Torres

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