love is what it's all about

If you’re like some of us and your sweetie is a daily chunk of chocolate for that 3:30 work break, we’re right there with ya! February means Valentine’s Day is near, and a chance to think about chocolate, love, friends, family, and sweeties of the human sort as well as edible sort. Sweeties + love are why people take our tours: they love to eat and drink—particularly the best sweeties known to mankind. We have found that our guests also love learning the stories of the food makers on the tour, and perhaps more importantly, sharing the experience with loved ones while eating cupcakes, craft chocolate and confections, macarons and other desserts that give new meaning to the word luscious. It’s fun to savor these two kinds of sweeties together—and we all know a full belly makes the heart happier.

We’ve seen love on our tours in all different ways: be it mothers and daughters together, fathers and sons, other family connections, a group of girlfriends, or couples in varying stages of like to love. Guests often become more animated on stops that include sweets, because it can be the first time a group of girlfriends may have tried, say, an horchatacupcake or macaron that is different from the coconut-y macaroons they may have tried as kids. They excitedly note the high level of quality in a tray of pure beautiful chocolate made from cacao grown in Venezuela, Papua New Guinea and Madagascar at Dandelion Chocolate—with these three bites I thee eat. 

On our Japantown tour one couple even got engaged! Our partner Humphry Slocombe has also been in the spotlight for marriage proposals. When you love food so much, it makes sense to set up a wedding proposal at a place where you’ve had delicious licks (we mean Secret Breakfast ice cream!) and memories. Food lovers are passionate, and the emotions expressed by eating together add up. Tour Guide and Writer Stephanie Rosenbaum Klassen wasn’t looking for love at work, but she found it in February 2013. As told to the New York Times, when winemaker Tom Klassen took the 24th Street Mission District tourwith his brother’s family, he got over his usual shyness and struck up a conversation with Stephanie during the tour about wine, which eventually led to them dating and getting married. 

Stephanie shared telling details about that first chance meeting:

“One funny thing was that although I don't usually eat when leading tours, but on this one, there was 1 quarter of pastrami sandwich left on the plate. And you don't just waste a piece of Wise Sons pastrami, so I broke a personal rule and gobbled it up. Tom later said he was charmed by this, and figured I was a woman with an appetite for many things! Wise Sons is now one of our favorite places to go. He swears by the #19 sandwich, while I love the smoked trout on bialy.” 

The Klassens now regularly return to Wise Sons which shows the romantic pull of food as it relates to a time and place.

Who knows, maybe the next love story will start in our Valentine's day tour

Some tour partners with chocolate include: Alegio (confections and single origin chocolate), Sixth Course (small batch handmade truffles), Charles Chocolates (confections), Dandelion Chocolate (bars and hot chocolate) and Recchiuti Confections. For dessert stops, our partners are: Sweet Bar Bakery (desserts), Miette (macarons and desserts), Love at First Bite (cupcakes), Mission Mini's (cupcakes), Bi-Rite Market and Creamery (ice cream, baked goods, and an assortment of chocolate).

Lisa Rogovin