We Love Chocolate! Celebrate Valentine’s Day in Westchester

New experiences with chocolate are popping up all over Westchester.

We Love Chocolate!

February is ubiquitous with chocolate. Between the cold and Cupid, it’s the perfect time to indulge in confections that reward us for making it through the long, bitter, self-depriving month that is January. But why settle for Hershey’s? This Valentine’s Day, skip the drugstore candy aisle and head straight to the source: Westchester chocolate outposts where the sweet stuff is made or molded before your eyes. These two chocolate shops will indulge your inner Willy Wonka and make your child as happy as … well … a kid in a candy shop.

Mast Chocolate

This organic bean-to-bar company is all about ethical sourcing and eco-friendly packaging. Founded in Brooklyn in 2007, the Mast Brothers have tested their empire in London and Los Angeles before opening a café-factory in Mount Kisco. This ode-to-minimalism space features bars in flavors like lavender and olive oil in addition to classic milk and dark chocolate.

What to expect

Kids love the cozy toy area and the windows that overlook the factory machines that mix their small batches of chocolate. Adults love the coffee and tea selection and the sophisticated bakery items for sale at the counter. We visited on a brisk winter day and found a bakery stocked with cookies, brownies, scones, toffee, and bread. Seating included a farmhouse table that can fit the whole family, and there were board games strewn across it too! There are also traditional tables and a comfy couch to laze on. The basket of toys ensures kids are entertained while parents enjoy their caffeine fix.
For sale are chocolate bars in about a dozen unique flavors such as oat milk, coffee, almond butter, mint, raspberry, and more. The chocolate comes wrapped in artisan-style watercolor paper, and packs of four are wrapped in twine for a rustic feel. You can also pick up Mast gear such as shirts, tote bags, and a cookbook.

Our verdict

We can’t wait to come back when tours of the factory begin. Mast will begin allowing visitors inside the machine rooms in early 2020. They also plan to host birthday parties in the coming months, but for now this shop serves as a great family pit stop to unwind and recharge with sweets and warm brews.

Chocolate Works

This Scarsdale sweet shop is like a mini chocolate sculpture gallery. It’s the perfect place to get personalized edible gifts in many shapes and sizes. But Chocolate Works is more than just a store. Host your child’s birthday party here and let them and their friends be chocolatiers for a day. Enter the private party room for up to two hours of chocolate-y fun.

The shop has been a town staple since 2011, but in 2019 was taken over by Scarsdale resident Winnie Cheng, who has revitalized the business by improving the selection of candy and gifts and creating personalized parties so little chocolate lovers can have their theme and eat it too.

What to expect

The hands-on activities let creativity soar with plenty of fun projects from molding and decorating a chocolate video game controller to creating a “choco-fied” pizza. Junior confectioners watch their creations roll by on the 20-foot conveyor belt and use sprinkles and colored chocolate to create a finished edible masterpiece. They also get to make a chocolate-covered marshmallow, pretzel, or Oreo. For a more customized experience, there are several party add-ons such as sundae making or a chocolate fountain.

You don’t need a birthday to book an experience. Chocolate Works also hosts workshops for small groups and playdates. You can book an edible experience for any reason: celebrate a holiday such as Valentine’s Day, or just play MasterChef Junior (or more like Nailed It!).

Our verdict

This shop is a great way for kids to think beyond the bar, learn a bit about where their food comes from, and create fun yummy edible art. Parents will love browsing the store for delicious treats, teacher presents, and other special occasion gifts.

When you go …

Mast Chocolate
92 South Moger Ave., Mount Kisco
Hours: Tuesday to Sunday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Coffee, chocolate, and snacks available for purchase inside the café. Parties and factory tours coming soon; see the website for more information.

Chocolate Works
450 Central Park Ave., Scarsdale
Hours: Tuesday to Sunday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Chocolate and candy are available for purchase. Book parties and workshops in advance on their website.