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March 2010

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Eat with your Eyes: Paint with Candy

Runts and Tart n Tiny. Arranged on an aluminum painter’s palette.

Wonka

POSTED BY Cybele AT 9:16 am     CandyComments (1)

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Eat with your Eyes: Orange Nougat BonBonBars

Sometimes I buy nice things and eat them. These are BonBonBar nougats.

Orange Nougat BonBonBar

POSTED BY Cybele AT 9:20 am     CandyFeatured NewsFun StuffPhotographyComments (0)

Friday, March 5, 2010

Wonka Exceptionals Domed Dark Chocolate

Wonka Exceptionals Domed Dark Chocolate PiecesThe new Wonka Exceptionals Domed Dark Chocolate pieces are No. 3 velvety dark chocolate with milk chocolate medallions.

They’re the third item in the new launch of the better quality Wonka chocolate products hitting store shelves now. The ingredients are all natural, the packaging revamped and the quality vastly improved.

Now that I’ve tried all three varieties I can say that they’re right, the quality of the chocolate is much better. The chocolate is smoother, has a bolder flavor and of course the fact that the ingredients are better should make it easier for families to choose Wonka. I’ve compared them before to Dove and Hershey’s Bliss - but what these have going for them is that the packaging is all about imagination - the bright striped foils are going to appeal more to kids than the sedate and elegant positioning of Dove or Bliss.

Wonka Exceptionals Domed Dark Chocolate Pieces

The pieces themselves aren’t quite as stunning to look at as the other two Exceptionals. The little domed blocks don’t stack either. I was hoping for some glossy dark chocolate, and while it’s tempered properly, the piece looks like well worn coat button instead of a sumptuous piece of dark chocolate.

Wonka Exceptionals Domed Dark Chocolate Pieces

The dark chocolate flavors are quite sharp. It’s acidic without being tangy, not quite chalky but a little dry. It’s smooth but I wouldn’t characterize it as the same silkiness as the milk and white chocolate from the Waterfall version. There are berry and raisin notes to the cocoa but nothing overtly complex. It’s toasty but not so dark that it’s roasty and too bitter like black coffee. The sweetness is pretty overwhelming, sugar is the first ingredient on the list.

As a dark chocolate, it’s very accessible, and probably won’t dissuade children from eating them. They remind me of eating chocolate chip cookies - the melt is similar to that in a fresh cookie.

I think Nestle has done a great job of reinvigorating the brand. It takes more inspiration from the original books and taps into the dreamy quality that Wonka has evoked in every kid who every kid who’s read it.

Related Candies

  1. Wonka Exceptionals: Chocolate Waterfall
  2. Wonka Exceptionals Scrumdiddlyumptious
  3. Nestle Milk Chocolate
  4. Nestle Noir
  5. Upscale Hollow Chocolate: Michel Cluizel & Hotel Chocolat
  6. Dark Raisinets
Name: Wonka Exceptionals Domed Dark Chocolate Pieces
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Wonka (Nestle)
Place Purchased: Ralph's (Glendale)
Price: $4.99
Size: 9.5 ounces
Calories per ounce: 138
Categories: Chocolate, United States, Nestle, All Natural

POSTED BY Cybele AT 8:08 am     Comments (6)

Eat with your Eyes: Goumas

Goumas is an Ohio candymaker. They create local favorites like Buckeyes as well as classics like caramels and toffees made with fresh nuts.

Goumas Toffee & Caramels

The mint meltaways, even though they’d traveled all the way across the country were glossy and pristine.

Goumas Mint Meltaways

POSTED BY Cybele AT 7:47 am     CandyFeatured NewsFun StuffPhotographyComments (5)

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Eat with your Eyes: SweeTarts Jelly Beans

Wonka SweeTarts Jelly Beans are perfectly lovely.

Wonka SweeTarts Jelly Beans

POSTED BY Cybele AT 7:27 am     CandyFeatured NewsFun StuffPhotographyComments (1)

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Wonka Exceptionals: Chocolate Waterfall

Wonka Exceptionals Chocolate Waterfall PiecesThe new line of Wonka Exceptionals are better quality chocolate candies. Nestle calls them The world’s most incomparably imaginative chocolate. The initial launch includes three chocolate products and to increase consumer interest a Golden Ticket giveaway for 5 trips around the world valued at $40,000 (that’s 5 different prizes, not 5 circumnavigations for one person).

Since the products are just being rolled out, they may not be on shelves everywhere yet. I found the Wonka Exceptionals Chocolate Waterfall Pieces at Ralph’s at a rather shocking price point of $4.99. The bars, which are 3.5 ounces are supposed to retail for $2.49. The package is gaudy and rather befitting the proud Willy Wonky tradition. The back of the package has the fun quote from the original Golden Ticket text from the book and exhorts folks to read the original book by Roald Dahl. (How many candies encourage that?)

The Waterfall chocolate is logged on the package as Bar No 99: Delectable combination of swirled milk & white chocolate.

Wonka Exceptionals Chocolate Waterfall Pieces

The pieces are wrapped in blue and purple striped foil. They’re a nicely sized block of one or two bites (9.25 grams or 1/3 of an ounce). They’re 1.25” long, 1” wide and about .33” high.

The package (which is sometimes hard to read because of how busy it is) says that it’s truly amazing chocolate made with natural ingredients and then says refer to the ingredients list. The list is then asterisked with only one ingredient not flagged as all natural - the soy lecithin. I’m guessing it’s because it’s from genetically modified (GMO) soy. Still, it’s all real chocolate - basically sugar, milk and cacao with a little vanilla & emulsifiers (lecithin - no PGPR).

The milk and white swirl is nicely done, usually in three expertly centered spokes.

Wonka Exceptionals Chocolate Waterfall Pieces

The pieces smell milky and sweet. The bite is quite soft, but still has a good snap to it for a high-milkfat chocolate. The texture does not disappoint. It’s very smooth and silky with a good fatty melt. The chocolate flavors are eclipsed by the dairy, but it’s still a comforting cocoa note that sticks to the woodsy and malty side of things. It’s very, very sweet though. They’re quite different from the Hershey’s Bliss White Chocolate Meltaway, which is not as sweet but of course doesn’t have the milk chocolate component.

There aren’t that many milk and white combination chocolates here in the United States, so this is a fun and original option. It’s probably not one I’d choose for myself but I don’t see the folks at the office complaining about them. (I’ve had the selection of all three versions in a jar for about a week on my desk.)

Related Candies

  1. Wonka Exceptionals Domed Dark Chocolate
  2. Wonka Exceptionals Scrumdiddlyumptious
  3. Hershey’s White Chocolate Meltaway Bliss
  4. Guylian Twists
  5. Choceur Coffee & Cream
  6. M&Ms Premiums
  7. Dove Silky Smooth Milk Chocolate Bars
  8. Hershey’s Bliss
Name: Wonka Exceptionals Scrumdiddlyumptious Chocolate Pieces
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Wonka (Nestle)
Place Purchased: Ralph's (Glendale)
Price: $4.99
Size: 9.5 ounces
Calories per ounce: 146
Categories: Chocolate, White Chocolate, United States, Nestle, All Natural

POSTED BY Cybele AT 1:44 pm     Comments (8)

Eat with your Eyes: Charles Chocolates Rocky Road

Huge pecans, freshly made marshmallows and caramel bits all covered in dark chocolate.

Charles Chocolates Rocky Road

Charles Chocolates makes a mean Rocky Road bar. (Package here.)

POSTED BY Cybele AT 11:15 am     CandyFeatured NewsFun StuffPhotographyComments (0)

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

CVS Marshmallow Pop

CVS (Laguna Hills) - Crazy Chinese MarshmallowsAt a CVS in Hollywood last week I spotted an exceptionally odd Marshmallow Pop among the Easter candy. It was blue and kind of the flounder version of some sort of plush animal - the face was all on one side of the profile. I thought it was a manufacturing mistake - I took a photo of it and made fun of it on Twitter.

Then I was in another CVS, some 50 miles away over the weekend and found another display (pictured here), this time with a half a dozen of these same strange light blue marshmallow creatures. So of course I had to buy one. It was only a dollar.

It’s a large marshmallow pop. On top of a plastic stick is perched 2.46 ounces of powder blue, sugar sanded marshmallow with hand-decorated frosting features. The packaging is simple, a clear cellophane bag - the back has some imprinted nutrition facts and CVS house brand satisfaction guarantee. You can guess where this review is going.

I bought a whatzit marshmallow

He’s about 5 inches high, 4 inches wide and about 1 inch thick.

But what is he? My first impulse is that he’s a plush version of the Quiznos creatures called Spongmonkies (here’s a video, but turn down your speakers before clicking). But this guy’s teeth are too good, oh, and he’s not furry. My second thought is that it’s a dinosaur, especially because the dentition indicates a carnivorous creature - some sort of Tyrannosaurus rex perhaps. The anatomy isn’t quite right. Look at how big his front legs are - well, there’s also that part where he’s crossed one arm across his chest and the other one is dangling like the elbow is dislocated. (Maybe he’s fallen off his bike and is holding his boo-boo, crying and running home to his mama.)

Then there’s the legs ... is there a leg missing? Is that a tail or a foot that’s also dislocated and facing backwards.

Is this actually some sort of roadkill? Pre-flattened with broken and missing limbs?

Anyway, let’s move on to the actual performance of the product as an edible.

Marshmallow Pop

It smells like some sort of raspberry - like an array of body washes and scented creams from Bath and Body Works. It also reminds me of a medicated pet shampoo I used to use (on my dog).

The sugary grain on the outside is substantial, far greater than I would have expected (and messier). It’s not like the fine stuff on Peeps, this is sparkly and gritty sugar.

The flavor of the marshmallow is well rounded, much more like those strawberry gummi puffs than a marshmallow. The texture is latexy, chewy and bouncy. The raspberry is both floral and tangy, sweet but not cloying. The blue goes all the way through and there’s a hint of an aftertaste to go with it. About a half hour later I was wondering if I’d been eating air freshener and forgot. The frosting bits were hard, crunchy and disconcerting - I wasn’t sure if it was unglazed porcelain sometimes.

A few bites in and I thought I’d eaten a little bit of the packaging. Little soft plastic bits (but it was wrapped in cellophane and this was nothing like that). The chunks, as far as I could tell, were unmixed gelatin globs. Flavorless and a little gummy, but probably perfectly edible. But not acceptable.

The nutrition label says one serving is the entire pop. While that’s only 240 calories, there’s no way I could eat more than the three bites shown. I stopped because my curiosity was satisfied, not my craving for a sweet.

It’s not horrible, but it’s really, really bad. While I enjoy novelties that might not be very palatable, they’re usually fun to look at. This is just frightening. The marshmallows are made in China, and since this is a house brand at CVS, there’s really no way of knowing where or how it was manufactured. I tried a similar product a few years ago from Walgreen’s house brand, a Valentine’s Pink Marshmallow Pig.

Related Candies

  1. Whitman’s Marshmallow Eggs & Carrot
  2. Choco-Fudge Mallow Sundae
  3. Marshmallow Pig
  4. Frankford Marshmallow Pals
  5. Peeps Mash Ups
Name: Marshmallow Pop
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: CVS
Place Purchased: CVS (Laguna Hills)
Price: $.99
Size: 2.46 ounces
Calories per ounce: 100
Categories: Marshmallow, China, Easter

POSTED BY Cybele AT 1:48 pm    

Page 6 of 7 pages ‹ First  < 4 5 6 7 > 

Meticulously photographed and documented reviews of candy from around the world. And the occasional other sweet adventures. Open your mouth, expand your mind.

 

 

 

 

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Which seasonal candy selection do you prefer?

Choose one or more:

  •   Halloween
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ON DECK

These candies will be reviewed shortly:

• Patric Chocolate

• Amano Chocolates

• Candy Rant: Stimulants are not Energy

• Candy Encyclopedia: The Difference Between Gummi and Jelly

• Candy Rant: If your Licorice isn’t black, it isn’t Licorice

 

 

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