V-Day is fast-approaching, and you know you don’t want to go with candy hearts and drugstore chocolate (again). This year, spring for something sweet that’s native to the City of Brotherly Love and Sisterly Affection, and you just might get some of that love and affection in return. – Chelsea Karnash
Pennsylvania General Store
From Sweetzel’s Spiced Wafers to Tastykake’s and Hope’s Cookies, Reading Terminal’s PA General Store has a slew of goodies that are perfect for your sweetheart. Can’t decide what to buy…or just want to buy it all? Settle on a “Philly Tower of Treats,” which includes edibles like butter cookies from the Melrose Diner, Goldenberg’s Peanut Chews and an array of Tastykakes. Want to go for something a little more high-brow? Opt for a tin of sprinkle-and-chocolate-covered pretzels or the decadent Pennsylvania Truffle Box. If you’d rather buy a sweet that’s more unique, try the “Chocolate Scrapple Tin,” which (thankfully!) contains no pork – just marshmallows, nuts and popcorn.
To ship what are arguably the best cannolis in the city to the girl/guy who’s arguably your favorite person in the world, head to Termini’s website and order by the dozen. Bonus: You can also mail-order other scrumptious baked goods, such as tins of fresh-baked torrones, pignolis and macaroons; or send containers of handmade chocolate nut clusters and pecan diamonds.
A Taste of Philly has made one of our guides before, but just in case you missed it, here’s a recap: Amoroso rolls – by the dozen. A plethora of your favorite Philly meat products. Soft pretzels. TastyKakes. Even “Philadelphia-style pizza” (honestly, I don’t have a clue what that is, but I’m sure it’s good). You can order ‘em all here, or get a combo of goodies within the “A Little Philly Snack Pack” or “A Little Philly Sampler.” While I’m hesitant to recommend ordering a four-pack of cheesesteaks via mail, reviewers as far as Florida and Georgia stand by their quality.
John and Kira’s Chocolate
Forget Godiva – why not go local if you’re sending chocolate? At John and Kira’s, you can pick up a number of super-adorable “Bee My Lovebug” gifts, featuring the company’s hand-painted Honey Caramel Bees, butterflies and ladybugs. And if your “lovebug” isn’t the type to go for, um, lovebugs, try the droolworthy Drunken Chocolate Figs – Spanish figs filled with whiskey ganache and dipped in dark chocolate – or an assortment of J&K’s amazing chocolate bars in flavors like mint, orange rosemary and chili.
For the most hilarious – and delish! – confections in town, head to Fishtown’s Whipped Bakeshop. Whether you’re going for risqué (the “Sexy Time” or “Let’s Play Doctor” cookie sets) or aww-inducing (a “Pugs & Kisses” gift set or whale and heart-shaped cookies wondering, “Whale You Be Mine?”), Whipped Bakeshop has something appropriate (or inappropriate, if we’re talking about last year’s moustache ride cookies) for everyone from your bff to the hubs.
*(also locations in West Philly and Rittenhouse)
The world’s number one “ice cream” shop also ships, meaning you can send a selection of six pints of creamy gelati or sorbetti to anyone you fancy, regardless of location. Don’t have time to sift through the sheer number of flavor choices for your frozen treat fanatic? Pick one of the pre-arranged gift sets, like the “Herbs and Spices” option (Rosemary Honey Goat’s Milk, Lancaster Mint Stracciatella, Lime Cilantro, Saigon Cinnamon, Mexican Chocolate and Pineapple Mint Sorbetto – my pick, hint hint) or the Italian Classics collection. Because while it might be 90 degrees below zero right now, the true ice cream-lover will enjoy some high quality gelato no matter the weather.