Sweets for the Sweet: Best Vancouver Chocolates & Chocolatiers

Thierry chocolates from Vancouver's Thierry Patisserie.

I have no doubt that, as Valentine’s Day (February 14) approaches, mainstream blogs and magazines will publish the now de rigueur assortment of “How to Survive Valentine’s Day” screeds lambasting the holiday’s commercialization/heternormativity/ability to make non-partnered adults feel crappy.  It’s not that I don’t agree with those critiques—I usually do—but…Chocolate! Chocolate in heart-shaped boxes! Chocolate for breakfast! Chocolate all day long! How bad a holiday can it be when the traditional meal is chocolate?!

If you, like me, could care less about the rest of Valentine’s Day as long as you get your chocolate, then check out these top Vancouver Chocolate Shops & Chocolatiers for truly exceptional Valentine’s Day chocolates. Use them as gift or just indulge yourself. (I plan to.)

Top Vancouver Chocolate Shops & Chocolatiers

Thomas Haas Fine Chocolates
One of Vancouver’s hottest boutique chocolate shops, Thomas Haas has been wowing—and wooing—chocoholics for over fifteen years. One of the Top 10 Chocolatiers in North America (according to Dessert Professional Magazine), these handmade chocolates are worth a trip out W Broadway/Kitsilano. Or, check out their new Patisserie on Harbourside Drive in North Van.

Maître Chocolatier Thierry Busset uses his French artistry, highest-quality ingredients, and a special climate-controlled ‘chocolaterie’ kitchen to create amazing, mouth-watering chocolates. Drop in to the downtown Vancouver location and sample the cakes, tarts and macarons, too.

Chocolate Arts
A neighbourhood favourite, Kitslano’s Chocolate Arts uses as much local produce—like raspberries, cranberries, hazelnuts, and wild blackberries—as possible to give its house-made confections a singularly Vancouver flavour.

Charlie’s Chocolate Factory
Family-owned since 1970, Burnaby’s Charlie’s Chocolate Factory is the dream of a kid’s candy store come to life. Not only does the shop have a chocolate river, it has an incredible variety of chocolates, including novelty chocolates in every shape, sugar-free chocolates, and personalized chocolates for every quirky taste.

Another Kits chocolate boutique, XOXOLAT carries Vancouver’s largest selections of single-origin chocolate bars from around the world, as well as extensive lines of organic, Fair Trade chocolate and Equitable Trade chocolates, and house-made delicacies.

Granville Island is actually home to several chocolate shops—including Rogers’ Chocolates (see below)—but ChocolaTas earns special accolades for its gourmet Belgian chocolates from owner/Maître Chocolatier Wim Tas.

Rogers’ Chocolates
One of the most famous chocolate companies in Canada, Rogers Chocolates got their start in Victoria, B.C., in 1885. Their store on Granville Island—one of their many locations—has a huge range of Valentine’s Day chocolates, from artisan chocolates to their famous Victoria creams.

Have your own recommendations for divine Vancouver chocolates? Please leave a comment!

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