TNT Diner

Local bakeries and chocolate makers have you covered for Valentine’s Day

Johnson Candy Co. sells prepackaged boxes filled with handmade candies. Or, buy an empty box and fill it to your specifications at the Hilltop candy store.
Johnson Candy Co. sells prepackaged boxes filled with handmade candies. Or, buy an empty box and fill it to your specifications at the Hilltop candy store. Staff file, 2016

I am here to save you from doing something dumb for Valentine’s Day. Like picking up a box of chocolates at a gas station because you forgot Tuesday is Valentine’s Day.

A quick trip to a local bakery or chocolate maker can yield much more interesting finds. We’ve got everything from hand-dipped chocolate truffles to handmade chocolate boxes, petit fours, mini cakes, sugar-free candy and chocolate-covered fruit.

BROWN AND HALEY FACTORY STORES

Where: 110 E. 26th St., Tacoma; 253-620-3067; or 3500 20th St. E., Fife; 253-620-3030. brown-haley.com.

Find: Almond Roca, of course, in several flavors. The stores carry Valentine’s tins ready for gifting.

Also: Pre-made dessert mixes, Almond Roca in bulk, Mountain Bars and other candies.

CELEBRITY CAKE STUDIO

Where: 314 E. 26th St., Tacoma; 253-627-4773; celebritycakestudio.com.

Find: Hand-dipped petit fours in decadent flavor combinations, plus decorated sugar cookies.

Also: Whole cakes or cake-by-the-slice, cupcakes, cake pops, more.

CORINA BAKERY

Where: 602 Fawcett Ave., Tacoma; 253-627-5070; corinabakery.com.

Find: Petit fours, hand-dipped truffles, plus mini heart-shaped cheesecakes.

Also: Brownies, cake-by-the-slice, scones, pastries, cookies, gluten-free desserts and espresso menu.

DOLCE SI SICILIAN BAKERY AND CAFE

Where: 5005 Main St., Tacoma; 253-292-0172, dolcesi.com.

Find: Decorated cookies and pastries.

Also: Cannoli, cakes, gelato and espresso menu.

EMILY’S CHOCOLATES/AMES INTERNATIONAL

Where: 4401 Industry Drive E., Fife; 253-235-4866, emilyschocolates.com.

Find: Chocolate-covered dried fruit, chocolate-dipped caramels, packaged candies and nuts.

JOHNSON CANDY CO.

Where: 924 Martin Luther King Jr. Way, Tacoma; 253-272-8504.

Find: The bonanza for Valentine’s Day candy offerings. Truffles and hand-dipped chocolates by the piece or pound, plus pre-packaged chocolates in boxes, large and small. Or, pick from dozens of empty, pretty boxes that can be filled with chocolates and truffles you select from the counter.

Also: Hand-dipped ice cream bars and selection of sugar-free candies.

LA WAFFLETZ AND MACARON STATION

Where: 2501 E. D St., Tacoma; 206-489-9770; facebook.com/lawaffletz.

Find: Macarons in more than a dozen flavors every day. My favorites for Valentine’s Day are rose raspberry, strawberry and raspberry chocolate. Macarons are French pastries with a buttercream frosting center (different from coconut macaroons).

Also: Dessert waffles.

THE TATTERED APRON

Where: 14207 Meridian Ave E., Puyallup; 253-845-4365, facebook.com/thetatteredapron.

Find: Red velvet cake hearts with cream cheese filling, plus love cakes, which are six-inch cakes in either white cake with strawberry filling or chocolate with ganache.

Also: Pie whole or by-the-slice, cake whole or by-the-slice, brownies, lemon bars, muffins, scones, drip coffee.

TEASE CHOCOLATES

Where: 610 N. First St., Tacoma; 253-327-1860, teasechocolates.com.

Find: Handmade truffles made straight from beans. Cherry cordials and other high-end confections.

TROP’S CHOCOLATES

Where: 3303 Jahn Ave. NW, Gig Harbor; 253-313-5804; facebook.com/TropsChocolates.

Find: Handmade chocolate boxes decorated to order, plus truffles (try the new red velvet) and hand-dipped chocolates.

Also: Brownies, chocolate syrups made in-house and espresso menu.

WANNA CUPCAKE

Where: 2102 E. Main St., Puyallup; 253-256-5566; wannacupcake.com.

Find: A selection of cupcakes, decorated cookies, dipped strawberries, plus chocolate-dipped cheesecake bars from Tacoma Cheesecake.

Also: Scones, muffins, bagels, espresso menu.

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