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Other sweet treats for Valentine’s Day

A 2011 study from the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology* suggests that sweet people like sweets (which is probably why they’re called that). Just to get things going for Feb. 14, here are a few sweet treats one can give someone sweet (or to sweeten the deal with somebody else).

Sebastian’s Ice Cream unveils its 2023 Valentine’s Ice Cream Collection with three new flavors, and a recognizably bitter classic.

The Matinong (Good) Boyfriend flavor is aimed towards women and the ones who love men, and is characterized by finesse, technique and a fruit element. This year, it is an Orange Ice Cream garnished with candied orange peel and chunks of orange almond butter cake. It’s made with lots of orange juice, turned into a custard base with a bright citrus flavor. Candied orange peel, orange-zest butter cake with roasted diced almonds add to the cheerful flavor (P145 per scoop; P435 per pint).

The Matinong Girlfriend flavor is aimed towards men and the ones who love women, and is characterized by a maximalist, more-is-more approach using salty-sweet, crunchy flavors. This year, it is a Dark Beer Caramel Ice Cream with dark beer caramel ripple and dark beer peanut brittle. Their salted butter caramel recipe has the water replaced with dark beer, cooked with the sugar and mixed into an ice cream base. The beer’s bitterness tones down the caramel’s sweetness, and the malt hops add complexity to the flavor (priced the same as the Boyfriend flavor).

The variant called Closure is a smooth ice cream meant to embody wellness and self-care, and is made using tea. This year it’s soothing Chrysanthemum Tea Ice Cream infused with Chinese chrysanthemum tea blossoms. This ice cream is made with real Chinese dried chrysanthemum blossoms simmered in a dairy base and steeped overnight to infuse a floral tea flavor (P135 per scoop; P405 per pint).

Unresolved Issues, an annual favorite, is bitter melon (ampalaya) sorbet infused with fresh ampalaya and garnished with candied ampalaya bits (P100 per scoop, P300 per pint).

Aside from these four flavors, Sebastian’s is also introducing Valentine-themed ice cream treats, which includes Strawberry Kisses Poppits (bite-sized strawberry ice cream nuggets dipped in milk chocolate and drizzled with pink-hued white chocolate; P260 for a 14 piece pint) and Chocolate Strawberry Ice Cream Cake (layers of rich chocolate cake with chocolate chips and strawberry ice cream, topped with strawberry compote and chocolate shavings; P155 per slice, and P1,650 for a nine-inch whole cake).

Scoop servings of the Valentine Ice Cream Collection, the Poppits, and cake slices are available at Sebastian’s Podium flagship store, while Valentine’s ice cream pints and the whole cakes are available at their online store (https://sebastiansicecream.com/).

Toblerone and Cadbury are dressing up in hearts for this season.

The Cadbury “Pop Your Heart Out” bar has a heart-shaped chocolate in the middle that one can pop out, while the packaging has a 3D paper heart. The distinctive shape of Toblerone sleeves (a triangular prism) has been covered in hearts, and a pull-out tab has a space for a short message.

“Valentine’s Day marks one of the two top gifting seasons in the Philippines. February has traditionally shown the highest sales for chocolates,” said Aleli Arcilla, VP and Managing Director for Mondelēz International.

The special limited-edition Cadbury and Toblerone packs are available at leading supermarkets while supplies last.