Chocolate is pretty darn good on its own. Add nuts, bits of cookie, or other candies to the mix and it's game on, people. "Bark" is, by far, the least appealing name in the holiday treats portfolio, but these irregularly shaped shards of heaven more than make up for it once you take a bite.
These days there are plenty of bark flavors to choose from, so if you're not a white chocolate kind of person, no biggie — there's still a bark for you and everybody on your list. These are the best of the best.
- The Original Peppermint Bark, $29 at Williams-Sonoma: Did Williams-Sonoma invent peppermint bark? I have no clue, but the cute nostalgic packaging certainly screams OG to me. The taste doesn't disappoint, either — must be that custom-blended Guittard chocolate and triple-distilled peppermint oil they use. You can buy yours salted if you like, and this season, for the first time, the tin can be personalized with a first or last name for a few extra bucks.
- Caramel Pecan Bark Gift Tin, $25 at Godiva: Godiva doesn't mess around when it comes to chocolate, and their caramel pecan bark is no exception. The buttery vanilla caramel is melt-in-your-mouth good, and the pecans are perfectly crunchy. But what's more impressive to me is the intertwining milk and dark chocolate swirls — because no one should have to pick a favorite.
- Speculoos Bark Tin, $10 at World Market: Fans of the speculoos cookie butter phenomenon, rejoice! There's now a bark that incorporates the popular European spiced cookie as a main ingredient. The tiny caramelized cookie bits in this bark pair well with its milk chocolate coating, and at $10 a pop, it's a no-brainer hostess gift.
- Dark Chocolate Salted Almond Bark, $27 at Phillips Chocolate: If sweet and salty is your jam, try the dark chocolate salted almond bark from Phillips Chocolate, Boston's oldest chocolatier. The sea salt's locally sourced, the chocolate is handmade, and Oprah is a fan. What more could you ask for?
- Salted Chocolate Caramel Peanut Bark, $23 at Crate & Barrel: Peanuts, you guys! This indulgent mix, created in the kitchen of the Long Grove Confectionary in Illinois, is extra peanut-y. And the cheeky faux bois-patterned packaging, complete with a festive grosgrain ribbon, doesn't hurt either.
What's your favorite candy bark? Did we include it in this list?