NYC’s L.A. Burdick Handmade Chocolates

Best Gifts in NYC

I recently was dismayed to discover that one of my favorite chocolate shops, Xocolatti, had closed down their brick and mortar and moved their location strictly online. The joys of having a local chocolatier often include being able to view the chocolates in person, question a shop keeper about their contents and flavors, and occasionally sample the chocolates before committing to a purchase. Storefronts are also a way to connect customers to the chocolatiers personal vision and style, is the product innovative? Is a boutique chocolate shop with only extremely dark chocolates or something more down-home and decadent? You tend to get an impression of what kind of chocolates you’re in for when you walk in. Support your local chocolatier folks! Who knows how long they’ll be around for.

Chocolate Shops in NYC

While Shaineal Shah’s Xocolatti has vacated their Prince St premises, another chocolate shop has since made SoHo their home. L.A. Burdick, whose Flatiron location was one of my favorite shops, relocated last year to 156 Prince St.

SoHo Chocolate StoreBest Hot Cocoa in NYC

The location, much like their Flatiron one, is adorable – wood shelving, tables, benches, warm tones, sconces, striped wallpaper, and framed photos of cocoa pods. I can already see myself meeting up for cocoa here during the winter and their frozen hot chocolate during the summer.

L.A. Burdick Chocolates in ManhattanChocolate Gifts in New York City

You can sit down for coffee, cocoa, and instagramable cappuccinos or grab boxes of their chocolate for on-the-go gifting. I recommend trying one or two of their petite desserts. The options aren’t overwhelming, but prepare your sweet tooth – chocolate lovers will rejoice over their raspberry chocolate cake.

Best Chocolate Desserts in NYC

L.A. Burdick chocolates are small but intense, their flavors pronounced but, again, not overwhelming. They’re really something special.

Boutique Chocolatier in NYCChocolate Wedding Favors

Every year my sister requests a medium sized box of L.A. Burdick chocolates for Christmas. I love how they come in a cute wooden box, sealed with a ribbon and a wax seal. The shop ladies are always so kind and wrap up the gift in tissue paper and extra ribbon, and the chocolates are always gone by New Years Eve.

Best Chocolates in NYC

Right now L.A. Burdick have partnered with The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, a charitable organization in Kenya known for their orphan-elephant rescue and rehabilitation program. 100% of net proceeds from these handmade chocolate elephants will be donated to the trust. Frankly, I can’t think of a better excuse to eat chocolate! The milk chocolate elephant contains dark chocolate ganache infused with fresh mint leaves – leave everything you know about mint chocolates behind, the mint in this chocolate is unexpectedly fresh and exciting. The dark chocolate elephant contains passion fruit and Amarula cream liqueur dark chocolate ganache. So good. Elephants will not be available in November and December, so snap them up while you can!

L.A. Burdick Chocolate ElephantsChocolates for Charity

In terms of high end or low end, L.A. Burdick chocolates – while on the more expensive end of the scale – are not pretentious. You get what you pay for, which is excellent quality, flavor, style, and design. Their chocolate is excellent chocolate, you don’t need to know what percentage of cocoa content you prefer to pick out a good piece. Bring your cocoa snobs and your Hershey loving friends here, I can’t imagine anyone not enjoying L.A. Burdick’s sweet treats.

L.A. Burdick Handmade Chocolates
156 Prince St
New York, NY 10012
(212) 796-0143

The QVC Beauty Advent Calendar – Best in Show!

It’s not often that I’m so consumed with excitement over an item that I can’t seem to get anything written down. Words actually fail me. I swear I was jumping up and down with joy when I got my hands on QVC’s 2014 Beauty Advent Calendar! As beauty/skincare/lifestyle advent calendars have grown in popularity it’s not always easy to find one that is actually not an overpriced load of samples. However, if you’re in the market for a beauty advent calendar, looking for a present for a girl who loves beauty, or just looking to treat yourself then this is one that will be worth every single penny!

QVC, Advent Calendar, Beauty, Gifts, Gift Ideas

Featuring one special surprise for each day of December, the QVC 2014 Advent Calendar features a plethora of high-end brands including Algenist, Alterna Haircare, Bareminerals, Bliss, Doll 10 Beauty, Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare, IT Cosmetics, Josie Maran, Kate Somerville, L’Occitane, Laura Geller Beauty, Mally, Molton Brown, Murad, Nest, Perricone MD, Philosophy, Peter Thomas Roth, Strivectin, Tarte, and Tula! Now I’m warning you, if you don’t want to be surprised stop right here. But if you don’t mind being spoiled read along!


I have to say, I was completely blown away by the products featured in here – I would love this calendar any month of the year, haha! Most of these products are actually completely new for me – so I’m really excited to give these a try. Also, while some of these are “sample sized” – they are really large versions – more travel sized than sample sized and there is a full sized product tucked in here too.

QVC, Advent Calendar, Beauty, Gifts, Gift Ideas

Ultimately, this is the single best beauty advent calendar I’ve seen out there – and perfect for the holiday season or even under the tree. Seriously, if this was the only thing I got for Christmas I would be a happy camper – there’s just so many great goodies in here!

*Spoilers – Don’t continue if you don’t want to be spoiled! ;)

Products included in the QVC Christmas Beauty Advent Calendar are: Algenist Genius Ultimate Anti-Aging Cream Formula, Alterna Haircare Caviar CC Cream Leave-In Hair Perfector, Bareminerals Bare Radiance All-Over Face Color, Bliss Blood Orange + White Pepper High Intensity Hand Cream, Doll 10 Beauty Lip Wardrobe Lipgloss and Lipstick, Dr.Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta Peel Extra Strength Formula, IT Cosmetics Hello Lashes 5-In-1 Volumizing Mascara, Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil, Kate Somerville Exfolikate Intensive Exfoliating Treatment, L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream, Laura Geller Beauty Inkcredible Waterproof Gel Eyeliner in After Midnight, Mally Volumizing Mascara, Molton Brown Eucalyptus Body Wash, Murad Rapid Age Spot & Pigment Lightening Serum, Nest Midnight Fleur Eau De Parfum, Perricone MD Photo Plasma, Philosophy Amazing Grace Shampoo, Bath, & Shower Gel, Philosophy Miracle Worker Miraculous Anti-Aging Moisturizer, Philosophy Purity Made Simple One-Step Facial Cleanser, Peter Thomas Roth Anti-Aging Cleansing Gel, Strivectin SD Advanced, Tarte Deluxe Lipsurgence Lip Tint in Enchanted, Tarte Brazilliance Skin Rejuvenating Maracuja Self-Tanner, and Tula Revitalizing Eye Cream.

Fresh Scents with!

I’ve been on the hunt for a new fresh fragrance to try. I wanted something fresh and bright – perfect for the start of summer. So when I was recommended Exceptional because you are by Exceptional Perfumes – which I learned had a spicy floral scent – I was eager to try the scent out for myself.

I love how they package each piece in a baggy – that way if anything leaks, it doesn’t get everywhere!

Exceptional because you are is the perfect scent to wear to a evening out – for me it’s a little too heavy to wear for everyday purposes. But I like layering the body wash, lotion, and perfume together – it just made me smell so good and the scent lasted all day. I’m especially happy to have a nice scent with special events like graduations and birthdays coming up!
True to description, Exceptional because you are has a “crisp elegant introduction, a lightly spiced floral heart, and a sensual dry down”. It’s one of those smell’s that everyone compliments you on, and you can’t help but sniff your own wrist throughout the night because you like the scent so much too. I have to admit it’s one of my more “grown up” fragrances.


I love the little atomizer and travel size perfume – perfect for throwing into my purse!

From FragranceNet, this new scent is one of my new favorites. FragranceNet always offers a lot of great deals like 20% off any order, and other similar sales. They also offer makeup, hair-care, aromatherapy, skincare, and gift sets. What’s really great is that if they don’t sell a perfume or product that you are already a fan of, you can request it – which I think is so refreshing to see a brand receptive to it’s customer’s requests.

Personally, I’ve already been browsing through their site looking for a gift for my dad for Father’s Day. I don’t know why but perfume’s and cologne’s always make a really nice gift, don’t they? They also do free shipping on all orders over $70, which makes it convenient when you’re shopping for a few people or stocking up on gifts. As for me, I’ve got my eye on the Aqua Di Gio by Armani – which I know my dad would LOVE, and at over %15 off – I think my wallet will love it too, lol!

Have you checked out FragranceNet before? Have you done any father’s day shopping yet? What fragrances are your favorite? Let me know in the comments below!