Each year, in February, The Island Hotel‘s Palm Terrace restaurant transforms its private room into a treasure trove of chocolate magnificence to celebrate Valentine’s Day. This year, the hotel’s Executive Pastry Chef, Andy de la Cruz, has outdone himself by creating a wonderland of delightful treats set within a modern and chic environment perfect for the new year.
Cocoa Lounge, as it is called, opens tomorrow, February 1st and runs until the 17th, every evening between 6pm and 10pm. You can either dine at Palm Terrace and finish off at Cocoa Lounge for $12/person or partake at Cocoa Lounge only for $18/person.
As you all know, I don’t have a sweet palate and in previous years, I have attended previews of Cocoa Lounge, written about it based on my friends’ reactions on the various desserts. This year, I’m happy to say, I sampled everything on display and was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed some of the items.
Apart from the tidbits of sweets on offer, there will also be an ice cream station where hand-dipped ice cream bars will be created as you order them. Chocolates and other edibles such as chocolate roses are also on display.
Here are some of my favorites of the night: white chocolate citrus bars with Andy’s signature lemon curd which I so adore. Perfect amount of tartness in a paired with white chocolate and topped with crystallized ginger and surprisingly, not too much sweetness.
I love panna cotta and these pistachio white chocolate panna cotta were really light and not overly sweet.
Chocolate banana savarins with Vienese bright yellow mousse and milk chocolate ganache were pleasant as well even though I normally do not like milk chocolate.
I especially enjoyed the deep dark chocolate tart with passionfruit cream. The passionfruit cream lent a surprising tart finish to the rich dark glossy ganache within the tart.
If you are a fan of white chocolate, white chocolate margarita mousse with tequila, grand marnier and lime zest will definitely please.
I didn’t get to try the Irish Car Bomb cupcakes with Guinness chocolate cake, Irish whiskey ganache and Bailey’s icing, but they are there if you want them.
The chocolate honey cake were super cute baked in baby bundt molds and glazed with a chocolate honey sauce.
So many more items are on offer and you will experience between 20 to 25 each night. For $50 per person excluding tax and gratuity, you can enjoy Cocoa Lounge with your choice of two drinks, wine, champagne or port or a flight of three 2-oz tastings of wine, champagne or port.
This year, The Island Hotel has once again generously donated a Cocoa Lounge experience for two to one of my readers to win. This is a once in a year lifetime and not to be missed. Leave me a comment with your FULL name telling me who you will be bringing with you if you win and why. Entries close on Sunday, 3rd. Winner announced Monday! Good Luck!
Cocoa Lounge at Palm Terrace
The Island Hotel
690 Newport Center Drive
Newport Beach, CA 92660
So happy to hear they are doing this again. This year I am definitely going! I’d take Lyle 🙂 with me
So badly want to go to this this year! I’d take Lyle with me. So fun!!
angie kim says
i will be bringing my husband because he’s my bestest. thanks
Shanna Kerr says
Why have I never heard of this before?? I would bring my husband because he is my sweetie.
Janice Lee says
Wow…this is really eye-opening & everything just looks too pretty to eat! I love to bring my 8 year old son there; this will be the ultimate Valentine’s special treat for him!
danielle laughlin says
If I won I’d bring my husband David because we both love chocolate with port and we’ve had an incredibly stressful few months so it would a great mini chocolate-filled getaway for us, especially since we missed the last chocolate salon.
Inge Lazuardi says
I will bring my husband because he’s my other half and it will be a great date night for us
R Wachner (@wachner) says
I have a raging sweet tooth that has been well documented. I have been trying to attend this for the last two years but something has always gotten in the way, including raw food diets and flaky friends. This is my idea of Nirvana, and I will make this happen this year!
R Wachner (@wachner) says
What I forgot to mention is that I will being my friend Heidi with me. She is the one who went on the raw diet and was unable to make it. We owe this to each other.
Teresa Pham says
I would looove to indulge my chocoholic bestie Linda who’s been scrimping & saving every last penny for her destination wedding in Hawaii this year! The little luxuries of eating out have been a thing of the past for her as she has fully embraced frugality…=/
Deirdre Campagna says
I would bring my husband because he is a chocolate fiend! Deirdre Campagna
Romina Camiling says
I would bring my husband.
Hayley Hansen says
This year my friend and I are celebrating being single for Valentines Day…I would bring her!
Mad Hungry Woman says
I will bring my husband as we LOVE chocolate and even met at a chocolatier – Leonides.
Lauren Lim says
I would bring my husband–we both love chocolate!
I’d take Jack cuz he deserves it
Ashley Khawsy says
If I won I would take my blogging partner Lili so we could fill up on sweets and share the once in a lifetime experience with our readers!
I would take my blogging partner Lili so we could fill up on amazing sweets and share this once in a lifetime experience with our readers! It would be an amazing opportunity!
Ashley Khawsy says
oops, forgot my full name! I just left the last comment but here’s my full name! 😀
Mary Lazaga says
I love chocolate, and I would love to take my hubby for a date night.
Melanie Kaminski says
I would take my sister with me because we are both chocolate lovers and are always looking for new places to try out.
I would bring my husband. What a wonderful event! Thanks for the opp – Raquel Pineira
Grace e. Lee says
Please chose me! I would bring my husband for a date night! We don’t get out much because we have a beautiful 13 month old daughter, but this would be our early valentine’s day date night 🙂 Chose me! Por favor! Please!
I know most people would probably bring their significant other but I think I would have the most fun there with my mom. We would giggle and ooo and ahhh over all the offerings and have so much fun “pigging out.” 🙂
Shannon C. says
I would bring my boyfriend, because we both enjoying new yummy foods!
I would bring my boyfriend, because we both love yummy desserts!!!
My long-time friend, Joani, and I are both divorced and always looking for something new and fun to do – and hopefully meet others with the same interests along the way. After looking at this blog, FORGET MEN — WE WANT CHOCOLATE!!!!
oh my!!! I would love to take my daughter. She is a dessert lover. What a beautiful and I’m sure yummy display.
Firoza Mamdani says
I’d take my close friend Brandi, she’s had a trying past few months and deserves a wonderful, sweet, chocolate filled evening…not to mention that we both love anything chocolate!!! 🙂 🙂
Lisa Kukula says
If I am chosen to partake in this delectable experience, I would give this to my sister and her boyfriend. She has worked hard all of her life raising her children on her own. Now that her children have grown up, this is the time for her to enjoy life and do things for herself. She finally is dating a nice guy, and he is her first real romance. It would be nice to treat my sister to this blistfull experience.
Mad Hungry Woman says
congratulations, you are the winner!!
Rachel Han says
This looks and sounds amazing. I would bring my husband because we both love chocolate!!
I would take my husband, because we both like sweets!!