Sure, most of us try to watch what we eat (and how much sugar we give the kids) throughout the year, but during the holidays, all bets are off. In fact, for many of us, holiday treats and sweets are as much a part of our holiday tradition as a Christmas tree and lights.
Now, you might be one of those people (the ones whom I greatly envy) who likes to make all of your own holiday treats. Or maybe, like me, you are all about outsourcing the Christmas cookies. But whether you have a kitchen full of freshly baked treats or a pile of empty cookie tins that you’re not sure how to fill (again….ME), it’s always nice to know where you and your family can go to find festive goodies for the holidays.
The Richmond area offers a variety of options for finding the perfect holiday treats, whether you want to stock up for a party or just want a place to enjoy some family time after a long day of shopping. Last year, we gave you a list of the best holiday treat spots for 2016 and this year we’re back with a brand new list of our five favorite destinations for 2017.
This year, we picked our favorites based on the following features:
- Unique holiday options
- Options for even your pickiest eaters
- Special orders or takeaway available
Whether you’re looking for cakes, cookies, or just the perfect cup of hot chocolate to warm you up on a cold day, these five spots offer everything you need to get in the holiday spirit—and you can worry about fitting into your favorite pair of jeans after the holidays are over. Take a look at our favorite spots for holiday treats, then be sure to send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have a favorite place that we might not know about!
In the meantime, happy holidays from all of us at Richmond Mom!
When you find Earl Grey, Brown Butter Caramel and Mint Julep chocolates on a menu, you know you’ve found something special. And there’s no question that Gearhart’s is, indeed, a special place. Since they first opened their doors in 2001, Gearhart’s has been featured in USA Today, The New York Times, Southern Living and countless other “best of” lists, both locally and nationally. Why you ask? It’s simple. Gearhart’s Fine Chocolates handcrafts their chocolates using only the finest ingredients—and it shows in every delicious bite. Choose from classic assortments of chocolates and truffles, gift boxes, Mayan drinking chocolates, specialty items, and gift cards.
Why we love them: With locations in both Richmond and Charlottesville, Gearhart’s retail locations are convenient and easy to find. But what makes them even more special is that you can also order online directly from Gearhart’s or if time is truly of the essence, check out their selection on Amazon, complete with two-day shipping for Amazon Prime members. Find the perfect gifts for family and friends, or put together a custom selection just for you. You’ll be delighted by the selections—and more than thrilled with the taste.
Gearhart’s Fine Chocolates
The Avenues at Libbie and Grove
306 B Libbie Avenue
Vinegar Hill Shopping Center
243-B Ridge McIntire Rd
Ok…we’re going to go with a slightly less traditional option here, but we think you’ll be glad we did. The Red Eye Cookie Co. specializes in late night orders and delivery. Now, while that might sound like the kind of thing that’s only good for starving college students, trust us when we say, these are some of the best cookies around—and not just late at night. With items like snickerdoodles (the ultimate Christmas cookie, if you ask me), seasonal Ginger Molasses cookies, classic Chocolate Chip cookies, Honey Crunch Peanut Butter cookies, and the signature Red Eye cookie (a red velvet cookie with locally sourced espresso mixed in, then rolled in powdered sugar), Red Eye Cookie Co. is an easy source for holiday treats. Choose from single flavors that you can mix and match, sampler boxes, or full orders of up to 100 cookies that will save you hours of baking before your holiday party. All of their cookies are available for delivery, or if you’re looking for a gift, they can be shipped anywhere in the country. It doesn’t get much easier than that.
Why we love them: Even though Red Eye Cookie Co. makes one of the best cookies in town (and that includes their second location in Charlottesville), we love them for just how easy they make getting the cookies from their shop to your table. With delivery available in many areas around Richmond, all you have to do is order online or by phone and next thing you know, freshly baked cookies will show up at your door. It’s almost like having your own Santa Claus that only delivers dessert. Plus, they only use locally sourced ingredients, including whole-wheat grain flour from Ashland, cream-line milk from Homestead Creamery in Burnt Chimney, and Blackhand coffee roasted locally in Richmond. You can even order a half gallon of fresh, creamy Homestead Creamery milk (regular or chocolate) and SilkÒ Almond or Soy milk to complete your order. With flavors and options for everyone, Red Eye Cookie Co. is the perfect way to make the holidays even sweeter.
Red Eye Cookie Co.
935 W Grace St
104 14th St NW
Since many of us try to squeeze our Christmas shopping in after work and school or on the weekends, Morsels might sound like it was designed for the busy family—especially during the holidays. This late night desserterie (and yes, that’s a thing) specializes in serving up mouthwatering treats for the after-dinner, after-movies, or after-Christmas shopping crowd. They offer hours from 6-10pm on Wednesday and Thursday, and 3pm-12am on Fridays and Saturdays, making them the perfect place to stop in for a sweet holiday treat after a long day. But what will keep you coming back time and again isn’t just their hours but their menu. Specializing in all things baked (and then some), you’ll find cakes, cookies, bars, cupcakes, cake pops, and so much more. With a menu of flavors too long to list, all we can do is tell you to check them out on Facebook for their weekly offerings!
Why we love them: As one of Richmond’s favorite up and coming bakeries, Morsels is a winner all year long. But we especially love their late hours. After a long day of shopping, it’s a treat to be able to hang out in their ultra-relaxed, shabby chic shop and enjoy some of the tastiest treats around. Plus, with holiday flavors aplenty and special orders available, you’ll find plenty of options to satisfy your holiday sweet tooth whether you want to dine-in or carry out.
Don’t let the name fool you. Pearl’s Cupcake Shoppe is about much more than cupcakes—so much more. At Pearl’s you’ll find gorgeously decorated “everyday” and specialty cupcakes, but you’ll also find incredible cakes, brownies, cake pops, cookies, macaroons, and so much more. And with the Christmas season in full swing, you can count on seasonal goodies galore with flavors like eggnog, “White Christmas,” and gingerbread. Keep in mind that their cupcake flavors and some other offerings change daily, so you’ll want to be sure to check out their Facebook page for the latest offerings.
Why we love them: As one of the top bakeries in both the Charlottesville and Richmond areas and numerous awards to their name, Pearl’s is well known for their incredible baked goods. But what makes them more than just your average bakery is that they also offer breakfast from 7:30am until 10:30am every Monday through Saturday. So if you are out and about for a holiday excursion, Pearl’s offers a great way to start the day with muffins, turnovers, scones, pastries, and more—all baked with the same expertise and homemade goodness of their regular menu. And of course, if you’re looking for holiday treats to take home, you’ve definitely found a one-stop shop!
Pearl’s Cupcake Shoppe
5812 Grove Avenue
711 West Main Street
For the Love of Chocolate / Yelp / Photo by Jessica H.For the Love of Chocolate has it all when it comes to confectionary delights. They offer everything from classic, hand-crafted chocolates to vegan and kosher candies. If you’re looking for specialty items or something a little more exotic, then rest assured, For the Love of Chocolate will not disappoint. Stocked with chocolates from around the world, Virginia-made items, seasonal specialties, baked goods, self-serve candies, retro goodies and organic and fair-trade products, you’ll find a full selection of options for everyone on your list—yourself included.
Why we love them: For the majority of us, Christmas is not just time to make new memories, but a time for reflection on Christmases past. For the Love of Chocolate seamlessly combines the past and present in their quaint Carytown shop. Not only do they offer an old-fashioned candy store vibe, but they offer a selection of old, new, traditional, and unusual candies in every shape and size. You can find candies and treats that you remember having as a kid, as well as completely original candies, truffles, and baked goods that will satisfy any palate. With a selection that is hard to beat and both pre-packed items perfect for gift giving or self-serve items perfect for stuffing holiday stockings, For the Love of Chocolate should definitely top your holiday treats list.
For the Love of Chocolate
3136 West Cary Street
Richmond, VA 23221