Valentine’s Day 2012: Let me do your shopping.Posted by Donna Freedman on Jan 27, 2012 | 151 comments
Yep, it’s early. I’m putting the Valentine’s Day giveaway up to allow plenty of time for the winner to receive the package and re-gift it.
That is, if the winner really wants to – the items range from the sublime to the ridiculous. All might be hard to turn loose once you see them.
Let’s start with the sublime: three new kinds of chocolate.
Made you look, didn’t I? This part of the giveaway is sponsored by the Ghirardelli Chocolate Company. The trio of 3.5-oz. bars represent the company’s new “Ghirardelli Gourmet Milk” line, and they are all delicious. (Don’t worry – I didn’t sample yours. The company kindly sent tester bars.)
All are made with 32% cacao milk chocolate. Lately I’ve been developing a taste for a more bitter chocolate, but these bars lured me back from the dark side, as it were.
Hands-down best is the Gourmet Milk Coconut Rendezvous, made with toasted coconut. As a kid I liked coconut Easter eggs and as an adult I like Mounds bars, but the toasted coconut combined with creamy milk chocolate is the best coconut confection I’ve ever had.
Ultimate praise: It’s so good that I only need to eat a small piece at a time. That’s true of all three flavors, in fact – and this is coming from a woman who would eat a couple of Kit Kats or Hershey bars at a sitting if common sense didn’t say “Knock it off, you.”
Premium lines like Ghirardelli last longer because they’re such a terrific indulgence. When I get a bag of those Ghirardelli squares, I eat only one per sitting because that’s all I need. I eat it slowly, really savoring the flavor and what the foodies call the “mouth feel” of the chocolate. It’s like the difference between a store-brand fudgesicle and a bowl of Haagen-Dazs.
If you have only a small budget for treats, I say get the best ones you can and enjoy them fully. A small square of good chocolate makes a great impact in your brown-bag lunch or as an after-dinner treat. And as you frugalists probably already know, Ghirardelli sometimes puts coupons in the Sunday inserts. That’s talking my language.
The other two flavors are Sea Salt Escape (toasted almonds and sea salt) and Creamy Devotion (just the 32% cacao chocolate, for purists). Since they’re decent-sized bars, they’ll last your recipient (or you) quite a while.
Next item in the giveaway is from Victoria’s Secret: a small purple bag with lotion, body wash and fragrance mist. The scent is the company’s “Love Spell” and the bottles range from 4.2 to 8.4 oz.
Finally we come to the ridiculous part of the evening’s festivities: the Love Gun.
If you thought the Chicken Chucker was fun, wait until you start firing Cupids all around the office, the coffeehouse or the singles bar. Trying to get a cute guy’s attention? Bounce Eros off his elbow. Don’t aim any higher – you could put someone’s eye out with this thing.
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The deadline is 9 p.m. PST Monday, Jan. 30. And keep the new rule in mind: If I do not hear back from the winner by Wednesday night, I will choose another name. So if you’re entering the contest, check your e-mail or risk forfeiting the goods.