The Best Fine Chocolate in the City

By Joan Walsh

Everyone has heard of Ghirardelli, but San Francisco has a wide range of local chocolate stores that are sophisticated in their selection. Explore the finest chocolatiers San Francisco has to offer.

Christopher Elbow

Christopher Elbow has a vast selection of artisan truffles as well as bars, chocolate powders, dessert sauces, and a hot bar serving up coffee and seven different flavored drinking chocolates served with whipped cream. The chocolate truffles are beautifully decorated making it a perfect for gift to impress anyone. Try the lavender truffle which comes in a rich purple hue, or the strawberry balsamic. For drinks, the raspberry is rich and pairs well with chocolate. The drinking chocolates can be enjoyed in their swanky, small lounge with floor-to-ceiling windows that look out to the street, perfect for people-watching in posh Hayes Valley.

401 Hayes St Francisco 

Truffles with a raspberry hot chocolate at Christopher Elbow. Photo By Joan Walsh/The Guardsman

Dandelion Chocolate

Unlike Christopher Elbow, Dandelion Chocolate does not make individual truffles but rather sells single-origin rich chocolate bars and a small variety of delicious desserts and beverages. Try the brownie flight which includes 3 bites-sized brownies each made with beans from a different region of the world, or their mini dessert sampler plate offered only at their Valencia location. There are 4 stores located in the city but their location on 16th is the most impressive, boasting a large factory and chocolate salon in addition to the retail café. The factory location also has different events, such as a factory tour with chocolate tastings and chocolate-making classes.

740 Valencia Street

Brownie flight at Dandelion Chocolate. Photo By Joan Walsh/The Guardsman.





It’s easy to miss Socola’s small storefront wedged amongst high-rise office buildings in the City’s Rincon Hill neighborhood.  In addition to truffles, Socola has a range of large chocolate bars with creative ingredients such as potato chips or cereal and they do not skimp on the portions. For truffles, some of their more creative flavors are Champagne, Peanut butter and Jelly, or Earl Grey. The storefront is only open during weekdays, more fitting for those who live and work around the area. They have a large online ordering presence, especially for truffle boxes with company logos. 

535 Folsom St

Diversely flavored truffles at Socola. Photo By Joan Walsh/The Guardsman.


Chocolate Covered

Located on bustling 24th Street in Noe Valley, Chocolate Covered isn’t a manufacturer but rather a retail store with a highly diverse selection of chocolate from all over the world. It’s easy to get overwhelmed in a store that has so many options, but the owner is usually on site and can answer any specific chocolate questions and inquiries if looking for something specific. There is something for everyone here!

4069 24th St Francisco


Recchiuti Confections 

Recchiuti is the perfect pick-me-up for ferry commuters looking for a snack on the way home, or tourists checking out the shopping options in the Ferry Building. In addition to a vast selection of prepackaged truffle boxes, they offer boxes of wonderful chocolate delicacies such as peanut butter pucks, chocolate-covered apple slices, or the chocolate-covered orange slices which are easy to eat all in one sitting. 

One Ferry Building, Shop #3

Key Lime apple slices at Recchiuti chocolate. Photo By Joan Walsh/The Guardsman.



Kokak is located in the Castro right near Dolores Park, just four blocks from Dandelion. The space is small but offers beautifully crafted truffles and coffee drinks, including drinking chocolate, large chocolate bars, and pastries. Their signature offering is the sweet and salty chocolate porridge which is a sweet rice with chocolate topped with Japanese rice crackers and coconut.

3901 18th St, San Francisco

One 65

Just a block away from Union Square, One 65 is known more as a patisserie and café rather than a chocolatier, but this is a good place to get a variety of different sweets since they also sell desserts and macarons. The truffles are decorated in rich colors and look like jewels. It’s perfect to stop by after a day of shopping since Macy’s is right across the street as well as a few blocks from San Francisco Center.

165 O’Farrell

Display of chocolate truffles at One 65 Patisserie. Photo By Joan Walsh/The Guardsman.



At Teuscher, all the chocolates are imported from Switzerland and weighed instead of a set price for each. While on the pricier side, Teuscher is all about decorating and gets extremely festive especially for the Christmas holidays. The champagne truffle is very popular but very rich. Fans of a lighter treat should try the rose chocolate which has a nice balance of white chocolate and rose flavor. 

307 Sutter St


Formerly located on Geary by USF, Jade now holds residence in a larger, more central Chinatown location. Jade focuses on Asian-themed flavors. Some unique flavors offered there are Curry, Lychee, Sake, Miso, and Lilika. Try the Sakura Cherry lemonade for something zesty and citrusy, or the Peanut Buddha made in the shape of a Buddha. They also fancy afternoon tea on the weekends with sweet and savory items in a 3-tiered tray.

607 Grant Ave

Chocolate truffles at Jade Chocolate. Brownie flight at Dandelion Chocolate. Photo By Joan Walsh/The Guardsman.


The Good Chocolate

Take a trip down to Visitacion Valley for the only non-sugar chocolate manufacturer on the list.  The Good Chocolate sells bars in many stores around San Francisco, but also has a small storefront in front of their facility.  You can literally smell the chocolate from down the street as they blend it there in-house. This is a great place for people who cannot consume sugar or are trying to cut back.  

25 Leland Ave


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