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Although chocolate is most strongly associated with a certain love-themed February holiday, these out-of-this-world desserts demand regular indulgence.

The Chocolate Bar

This shop’s two locations, in River Oaks and the Rice Village, offer options galore, from chocolate-dipped Fritos and Oreos to design-your-own chocolate bars to the requisite cakes and pies. Our very favorite? The Night & Day Cake, with its contrasting tiers of tender dark-chocolate cake and buttery white-chocolate icing, finished with chocolate ganache. One wedge can easily feed two.

Kenny & Ziggy’s

Everything is bigger in Texas, including this classic Jewish deli, whose chocolate desserts are as large and in charge as its mile-high sandwiches and hearty platters of Eastern-European classics. Get the torpedo-sized chocolate éclair or a massive slice of chocolate babka, dense with chocolate marbling.

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Image: Alice Levitt

Killen’s Steakhouse

Yes, the biggest draw at this revered steakhouse is the cuts of dry- and wet-age beef. But try to save room for a plate of chocolate truffles. The intense flavors of each delectable orb comes courtesy of a range of different cocoa butters, and, in some cases, fresh fruit and toasted spices, all painstakingly put together by pastry chef Samantha Mendoza.

Laurenzo’s

Offering unique home-style dishes influenced by the Laurenzo family’s Italian and Mexican heritage, this restaurant is perhaps best known for its juicy, ecstasy-inducing prime rib. Also worthy of fame, however, is the decadent dark chocolate brownie sundae. Crowned with a softball-size scoop of vanilla Haagen-Dazs and drizzled with salted bourbon caramel sauce, the brownie itself boasts an incredibly rich texture and deep, dark chocolate flavor. It’s well worth the $9 price tag, but you can enjoy it on V-Day for just $6.

Ooh La La Dessert Boutique

While the whimsical, seasonally decorated sugar cookies, pastel macarons, and tangy lemon squares at this three-location bakery do elicit ooh-la-las, the triple-chocolate cheesecake gets a wowser! The cheesecake, which arrives in a tower of-chocolate cookie-crumb crust with milk- and white-chocolate cream and dark-chocolate frosting, is gut-bustingly delicious. On the fence about trying it? Remember what Oscar Wilde said: “The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it.”

Ouisie’s Table

For more than 15 years, patrons have flocked here for Louisiana favorites like blackened redfish and comfort-food staples like chicken-fried steak and shrimp and grits. Whatever you order, finish your meal with Ousie’s Black Magic Cake, whose three luscious layers of dark-chocolate cake are interspersed with thick chocolate-fudge frosting. Created by owner Elouise “Ouisie” Jones herself, it’s worthy of a spot on the Hogwarts banquet table.

Rainbow Lodge

The indulgent game and seafood dishes on offer here are best followed by a slice of chocolate bourbon pecan pie. This divine combination of booze, sugared nuts, and rich chocolate imparts a slow, relaxing buzz that will satisfy even the most die-hard chocoholic.

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Redfish Grill

A wonderful seafood eatery that also happens to have darn fine desserts? Stranger things have happened. The moist, flaky white-chocolate bread pudding—made with Belgian chocolate, vanilla beans, nutmeg, cinnamon, Amaretto-marinated raisins, and (yes!) Mrs. Baird’s white bread, then topped with Amaretto-rum sauce and toasted almonds—is the epitome of sophisticated comfort food.

Third Coast

For a Med Center restaurant that takes special pride in its health-conscious fare, this place is the surprising source of a mean and not-so-lean double-chocolate-mousse cake. Stick to the chilled-watercress-and-cucumber soup and a plate of mussels for supper, then reward yourself with this decadent dessert.

Xochi

Hometown hero Hugo Ortega’s carefully curated menu, an impressive homage to the culinary traditions of Oaxaca, Mexico, features moles, masas, tlayudas, and—perhaps most exciting of all—an entire chocolate section. Get the deceptively named “cacao,” an artfully composed plate adorned with a cocoa pod flanked by chocolate in various textures, tejate foam, a milk chocolate cloud, and chocolate criollo “soil.”

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In this Article

Xochi

$$$ Mexican/Tex-Mex 1777 Walker St.

This elegant eatery on the ground floor of the Downtown Marriott Marquis isn't your average hotel restaurant. It's Houston's first upscale Oaxacan restaurant...

Third Coast

$$$ American/New American, Seafood, Southern 6550 Bertner Ave. (Texas Medical Center 6th floor)

The elevator climbs straight to the sixth floor of the Texas Medical Center where chef Jon Buchanan cooks up diverse dishes using Gulf Coast ingredients. Sta...

Redfish Grill

$$ Seafood 19550 Hwy 249

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Rainbow Lodge

$$$ American/New American 2011 Ella Blvd.

Set in a hundred-year-old log cabin on an acre of land along White Oak Bayou, Rainbow Lodge, which specializes in local fish and game, is one of the most cha...

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Ouisie’s Table

$$$ Cajun, Creole, Southern 3939 San Felipe St.

Horton Foote based his play Dividing the Estate on chef and owner Elouise “Ouisie” Adams Jones’s family; Miss Ruby, the scarlet dress Jones’s sister wore to ...

Ooh La La Dessert Boutique

$ Dessert Multiple Locations

Vanessa O’Donnell’s three Houston-area boutiques offer entire menus devoted to the holidays. Pick up everything from pumpkin pies and cranberry-orange cookie...

Laurenzo's Restaurant

$$ Steak 4412 Washington Ave.

This old-school throwback reminds one of simpler times, when families still got together over Sunday prime rib. Not coincidentally, Laurenzo’s offers one of ...

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Killen’s Steakhouse

$$$$ Steak 6425 W. Broadway St.

For many Houstonians, the best steak in Houston isn’t found inside the Loop or even (gasp!) the Beltway; rather, it’s found about 30 minutes south of Houston...

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Kenny & Ziggy’s New York Delicatessen Restaurant

$$ Deli, Sandwiches Multiple Locations

Ziggy Gruber says that his Galleria deli on Post Oak, Kenny & Ziggy’s, is “the best New York deli in America,” and he isn’t kidding. The once-proud fixtu...

Editor’s Pick

The Chocolate Bar

$$ Dessert Multiple Locations

Willy Wonka himself might be envious of the confections here. On one side of the store patrons enjoy hot chocolate, ice cream and massive slices of cake, and...