If your Valentine is more impressed by fried dough than diamonds, the homemade doughnuts at this charming new Ashland café and coffeehouse will ensure a smooth start to the holiday. Puffy, pale gold, stuffed with silken custard and dusted with sugar, they’re a must-order. On the savory side, don’t bypass the excellent crème fraîche biscuit sandwich or soft-scrambled herbed eggs. After your meal, browse the shop’s artisan larder, and buy a bundle of flowers to go. Doughnuts and dahlias? Talk about brownie points.
376 E MAIN ST.
Love affairs with coffee are de rigueur in Portland, but the waterfront’s newest caffeine klatsch is taking this romance to a whole new level by slipping a trio of ahogados, a.k.a coffee poured over ice cream, onto the menu. Impress a hot date with the chipotle-spiked chocolate mole ice cream heaped with cacao nibs and pepitas, dusted with crushed dried raspberries, and served with a sweet, crunchy waffle chip and a shot of the house espresso.
1816 SW RIVER DR.
Strolling the promenade with your sweetheart on a misty winter morning is best done post-apple cinnamon scone, so start the day strong at this bright and bustling Seaside bakery, where the pastry case is full of surprise twists—moist, flaky chocolate tahini rolls, chai tea-infused pumpkin scones, and thick slabs of currant and pecan-studded butternut squash bread.
8 N HOLLADAY
Former river guide, pastry chef and law student Mackenzie Rivers found her true calling in chocolate, and her beautiful new line of small batch bars—infused with everything from toasted black sesame and dried plums to cardamom and caraway seed—can now be found in the state’s best specialty markets, like Eugene’s 5th Street Market, and Portland’s Providore Fine Foods, Little Nib and The Meadow. Or, treat your favorite cacao buff to Rivers’ hands-on Bean to Bar 101 classes and weekend-long Chocolate Camp, which includes instruction on craft chocolate origins and sourcing, hands-on chocolate making, and a signature In Pod We Trust T-shirt.