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For The Love Of Chocolate

Ono, You Know

February 11, 2018

Story By: Ali Resich | Photos by: ANTHONY CONSILLIO

It’s love at first bite for the editor when she delights in Chocolate Duo from Ruth’s Chris.

We all remember one of the most iconic movie scenes of all time, when Forrest Gump relays his mama’s words of wisdom, “Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re going to get.”

How true it is that we can’t always anticipate the peaks and pits of this roller coaster known as life, but one thing we can do, at least, is make the most of the times when we’re able to bite into the most delicious chocolates in the box.

For many of us, having a love-filled Valentine’s Day, whether with a significant other or cherished family and friends, falls into the category of chocolates we want to eat.

And in a much more literal sense, spoiling our Valentines with mouthwatering desserts — many of them chocolate-based — remains a highlight of the annual holiday. In fact, chocolates and candy account for over $1.5 billion in sales during this time of year, according to the National Retail Federation. So, I thought, there really is no better time to line up some amazing chocolaty treats for you. After all, I know you’ll be looking for them!

CALLING ALL CHOCOHOLICS

While many of us would love to start with dessert, the truth is we’ll have to eat something substantial before diving into those Valentine’s Day chocolates. That being the case, you might as well make it a meal to remember at Ruth’s Chris Steak House.

Molten chocolate cake is one half of the Chocolate Duo ($11) dessert at Ruth’s Chris.

Nothing says romance quite like a first-class dinner, and as the restaurant promotes, Ruth’s Chris is ready to help get that sizzle started with USDA Prime steaks that are wet-aged for 14 to 20 days before being broiled to perfection.

Among the popular cuts for date nights are Petite Filet ($49), which tends to be popular with the ladies, according to executive chef Eser Domingo. (Guys, are you taking notes?) Of course, for males and females alike with heftier appetites, Porterhouse for Two ($125) offers the ultimate red-meat gratification to share with your sweetheart. And let’s not forget about the range of pupus, salads and classic steak-house sides to round out the main meal.

Now, for the part you’ve all been waiting for, conclude your dining experience with the Chocolate Duo ($11) dessert, which offers more ways than one to sink your teeth into velvety chocolat.

This sweet creation starts with house-made molten cake, which gives way to a river of silky ganache on the inside. Fresh berries on top, as well as raspberry sauce on the side, are perfect complements for the dark chocolate cake, which is made even dreamier with vanilla creme anglaise. As a lovely contrast to the richness of the warm cake, a cool mugful of light and creamy chocolate mousse balances out the dessert. As Domingo describes, the mousse is “not too sweet — it’s just right.”

Considering that Ruth’s Chris started offering its specialty Valentine’s cocktails on Friday, it’s not too early to head to the restaurant to get the fireworks going with some divine bites and libations.

CUCKOO FOR COCOA DESSERT

Whether you want sparks to fly this Valentine’s Day, or you’re simply looking for a nice spot to take the whole family, Apple-bee’s Grill & Bar is equipped to make the holiday a mouthwatering one for everyone involved.

Throughout the dining chain’s three Oahu locations, patrons are met with comforting American fare, big portions, great value and the friendliest of service. Come Feb. 14, tables will be filled with diners going for the megahit steak, seafood and chicken options on the menu, while those who love burgers will take advantage of the current special pricing at $11.99 a pop.

Applebee’s Triple Chocolate Meltdown ($8.99) will leave you weak at the knees.

When it comes time for that most coveted part of the meal, perhaps no other dessert can compete with Triple Chocolate Melt-down ($8.99). This sweet tooth’s dream dish is not only one of the most popular desserts, according to Pearlridge general manager Gladys Duenez, but it also is a core Applebee’s menu item, period.

The moment you taste it, you’ll know exactly why, as you’ll dig your fork into the warm chocolate cake, only to watch rich chocolate fudge come flowing out of its center for a truly soul-soothing bite.

“It’s like a lava flow, and it oozes with that wonderful, rich chocolate fudge,” explains Duenez, who adds that ice cream brings a nice-and-cool contrast to each bite.

“Our significant others are always wanting to surprise us with chocolate on Valentine’s Day, so this is the perfect way to indulge while spending the holiday with us at the restaurant,” she says.

And if you’d like a night cap to top off your love-filled meal, go for Applebee’s current drink special of the month: a $2 Bahama Mama, the eatery’s take on a mai tai that’s given some banana flair from Creme De Banane liqueur.

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