Rocco’s Italian Cuisine was looking for something to do to get people online to interact with their newly created Facebook page around this time last year, so they decided on a Valentine’s Day-themed contest.
They tossed a whole bunch of Hershey's Kisses into a large jar and let people try and guess how many were in the jar. Vinny Rosano, whose family owns the restaurant, estimated between 400 and 500 people guessed last year, with the winner coming within three kisses.
As Valentine’s Day nears, the contest is back this year. The winner will earn a $100 gift card to the restaurant. Rosano said he thinks they will announce the winner on Feb. 15. The runner-up receives the jar filled with Hershey's Kisses.
While Rocco’s might be the one place in New City where people are trying to estimate quantities of chocolate, a few other locations will have people trying to figure out what kind of chocolate they want to order for their loved ones. The Chocolatier, Dolce and Edible Arrangements all have a few busy days ahead leading up to Thursday’s holiday.
Sheryl Lorber, president of the Chocolatier, said this year the store has a few new items, including fudge and truffles. There are various flavors of both. In fudge, Lorber said the store has chocolate peanut butter, maple walnut, heath bar and chocolate cheesecake. In the truffles, she said they have sea salt, ganache, chocolate, tiramisu and more.
The Chocolatier also has plenty of other treats, and Lorber said the store will be open until 7:30 p.m. Wednesday and 7 p.m. on Thursday, later than the normal 6 p.m. closing time.
Lorber also said she plans on spending much of Thursday dipping strawberries in chocolate, which she added is probably her most popular item around Valentine’s Day.
Amy DaBenigno, whose family owns Dolce, said that similarly, chocolate-dipped strawberries are the most popular item at Dolce around the holiday. Both Lorber and DaBenigno said it’s preferable to place orders for chocolate-dipped strawberries before Thursday, but they also both added that they’ll have plenty of strawberries and chocolate for those last minute shoppers to place same-day orders as well.
“It’d be nice to know about how many we’ll have to make,” DaBenigno said. “But we’ll be here dipping strawberries all day to make sure they’re fresh.”
While the store’s regular hours are from 10:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., Dolce is opening at 7 a.m. and closing possibly at 8 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday, DaBenigno said.
“We’ll play it by ear those two nights and see how much work there is,” she said.
Edible Arrangements is also accepting same-day orders, although they’re asking anyone who wants to have an item delivered to order it before Thursday. Pickup orders can be done same-day, however.
Some popular Valentine’s Day items at Edible Arrangements include Lovely Berries, which is a dozen strawberries dipped in chocolate and topped with heart-shaped sprinkles. So Berry Lovely is a gift basket filled with heart-shaped pineapples, chocolate-dipped strawberries, grapes, strawberries and a stuffed bear. There’s also the Sweetheart Bouquet, which is an arrangement of chocolate-dipped strawberries.