Alternative treats for a sweet Valentine’s Day
1 Comment Karen HamiltonFebruary 12, 2011
Flowers and a box of chocolates have their place, but not on Valentine’s Day. To me, a present like that feels like the giver didn’t want to figure out what you actually find romantic. It’s akin to getting a generic gift basket from name-a-bath-shop-here on your birthday.
This is what I’d rather get – and give – to my favourite people with a sweet tooth on Valentine’s Day.
Heart-shaped gelato cake from Bella Gelateria
Haven’t had the time for a public outpouring of adoration for Coal Harbour’s kick-ass gelato stop, but hopefully that will follow on Tiny Bites before summer hits. What you need to know for Valentine’s Day is that heart-shaped gelato cakes, customizable with up to 3 gelato flavours, custom messages or decorations, and ribbon, are available for pick-up as long as you give them at least 24 hours’ notice. 8″ and 10″ are the standard sizes regardless of whether you choose a circle or a square. If you don’t have enough people or willpower to down an 8″ serving, you can opt for these individual-sized gelato cakes instead.
1001 West Cordova Street | Coal Harbour
Hazelnut love from Ganache Patisserie
My favourite cake shop has crafted a seasonal cake for Valentine’s Day. The $25 Saint Valentin Noisette Passion 2011 is a hazelnut-in-hazelnut tart that gives me a chocolate thrill just from hearing the description: hazelnut ganache speckled with toasted hazelnut pieces inside a choco-hazelnut shell, topped with dark chocolate mousse containing a passionfruit creme brulee centre. After all that, Ganache decides to ring it with raspberries and pink chocolate hearts, too. I hope none of you are allergic to hazelnuts!
The regular line-up offers plenty to choose from in terms of group and individual servings. You could go with layers of red and white with a Coco Velours Rouge: a red velvet cake with dark chocolate ganache, coconut cream cheese mousseline, and vanilla chantilly (pictured right). Cranberry lovers would love the Chocolat-Canneberge: white chocolate cranberry parfait, milk chocolate mousse, and a praline crunch (centre). Those wanting something lighter might like the bestselling Blanc Frasier better: vanilla cake, vanilla sablé Breton, white chocolate black pepper mousseline, strawberries, and passionfruit meringue (left).
1262 Homer Street | Yaletown
3 special afternoon tea services at The Urban Tea Merchant
My favourite tea house is putting on several special tea services during the month of February. The signature service is the Sweetheart Afternoon Tea: $48 per person and inclusive of a $30 tin of tea to take home for cozy evenings together. If the idea of a $96 tea for two is too much for your pocket book, they are also putting on a $16 Tea and Chocolate Fondue service daily between 2-6pm.
Fondue for two is a lot more my style, but I know my tea-indifferent husband wouldn’t go for that either. If only my daughter was old enough to appreciate the $24 Mad Hatter’s Tea: a children’s tea service with nutella sandwiches and PB&J plus other kid-friendly goodies. The roiboos or fruit tisane tea is served in the most precious line of tea glassware! I’d buy a set for my household in a heartbeat if my husband would indulge the spend (a not-so-subtle hint for him for a Valentine’s Day gift for me).
The Urban Tea Merchant
1070 West Georgia Street | Downtown | (604) 692-0071
825 Main St | West Vancouver | (604) 926-3392
Whatever you choose for your Valentine, make it count, and make it delicious!