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May 2010

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Candy Tease: Hershey’s 2010

imageName: Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Drops
Brand:  Hershey’s
Description: Introducing Hershey’s Drops and Reese’s Minis! These new items will further expand the hand-to-mouth segment by offering iconic brands in a small, unwrapped, easy-to-eat format. Hershey’s Drops offer a lot of Hershey’s Happiness in a little drop of milk chocolate or cookies ‘n’ creme candy. Drops are bite-sized candies without a candy shell, featuring a light, shiny, mess-free finish. 
Introduction Date: 12/03/2010
Notes: I don’t know quite what the “hand-to-mouth” segment is, I thought it was something discussed in the financial sector. These are certainly a curious product. They’re similar in construction to the M&M’s Premiums introduced two years ago in that they have only a thin glazed coating instead of a full candy shell. But they’re much larger, a full bite of chocolate. The fact that they’re releasing them in the Cookies ‘n’ Creme version I think will really help these stand apart from the M&Ms sector.

imageName: Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups Minis
Brand: Reese’s (Hershey’s)
Description: Reese’s Minis offer the perfect combination of milk chocolate and peanut butter in a convenience, unwrapped peanut butter cup. Reese’s Peanut Butter Lovers everywhere can now enjoy Reese’s in a mess-free, bite-sized product experience. Available in take home pouches and instant consumable King Size packages.
Introduction Date: 12/03/2010
Notes: It’s tough to even think about these after having the Trader Joe’s Mini Peanut Butter Cups for all these years. It seems so silly that Reese’s wasn’t making them all along. Anyway, probably great for baking and eating at the movies.

imageName: Ice Breakers Frost
Brand: Ice Breakers (Hershey’s)
Description: Ice Breakers Frost, in Wintercool and Peppermint. Strong mint users want a mint that provides powerful breath freshening without the harsh, bitter taste associated with existing strong mints. Ice Breakers Frost Mints deliver the intensity and long-lasting freshness strong mint user expect PLUS the great taste of Ice Breakers. Frost Adds POWER to the Hershey Mint Portfolio! 
Introduction Date: 09/03/10
Notes: The package is kind of interesting, but the world of mints is getting mighty confusing.

imageName: Jolly Rancher Awesome Twosome
Brand: Jolly Rancher (Hershey’s)
Description: Jolly Rancher Awesome Twosome Chews offer two flavors in one candy - including chewy watermelon wrapped around a green apple center and cherry wrapped around an soft orange center.
Introduction Date: 12/3/2010
Notes: I don’t quite understand how these are a Jolly Rancher product instead of a Twizzler item. Except for the fact that there was a Twizzler product like this called Twerpz which was just single flavors, but still similar enough in concept.

imageName: Jolly Rancher Tropical Fruit Chews
Brand: Jolly Rancher (Hershey’s)
Description: Pineapple, Lemon-Lime, Tropical Punch and Strawberry-Kiwi
Introduction Date: 6/4/2010
Notes: Jolly Rancher introduced their fruit chews back in 2001. They’re kind of like Starburst, except they seem to come in a box instead of a pack. Of course Pineapple sounds like the most promising flavor to me. Come to think of it, a Pineapple Jolly Rancher hard candy sounds good, too.

imageName: BREATHSAVERS Cinnamon
Brand: Breathsavers (Hershey’s)
Description: Hershey’s is the mint leader in convenience stores. 
Introduction Date: 3/26/2010
Notes: Honestly, I thought there already was a cinnamon Breathsaver.

POSTED BY Cybele AT 10:48 pm     CandyNew Product AnnouncementFeatured News

Candy Tease: Sweets & Snacks Expo 2010 - Part 2

imageName: Jelly Belly Cocktail Classics
Brand: Jelly Belly
Description: Mojito is a mix of mint, rum and lime; Pomegranate Cosmo is made with real juice from the fruit; and Peach Bellini comprises peaches and champagne. The beans are non-alcoholic, gluten-, dairy- and gelatin-free, as well as vegetarian and kosher-certified, according to the company. Beans pack in 3.5-ounce bags with a SRP of $2.49, 7.5-ounce clear classic packages and 4.25-ounce gift boxes both with SRPs of $5.99. All items ship 12 per case.
Introduction Date: 5/1/2010
Notes: It used to be that Jelly Belly created menus where you mix your own beans to create cocktails, smoothies and other flavor combinations. Now they’re doing it all inside the bean for you.

imageName: Turkey Feather Lollipop Counter Merchandising Deal
Brand: Squire Boone Village
Description: Turkey Feather Pops are so unique that Squire Boone Village has been granted a United States design patent. The colorful Feather Pops are packed assorted colors and flavors: apple, cherry, grape and blue raspberry. The Turkey Display itself is destined to one day be a valuable collectors’ item. SRP $1.59
Introduction Date:  01/01/2010
Notes: I just liked this photo ... that’s all. I doubt I’ll ever run into these at a store, but if I did, I don’t know if I’d be able to resist one of the pops.

imageName: Ed Hardy Branded Candies
Brand: NBSP
Description: The Ed Hardy brand is the hottest brand in the market today! We have candy with added consumer value. This includes collectible lunchboxes, temporary tattoos, and other add-ons. Candies include hard candy, sugar free gum, and gummies. 
Introduction Date: 5/1/2010
Notes: Um, I don’t know who Ed Hardy actually is, but I see bus ads for them here in Los Angeles and the name bedazzled on people. I don’t know if that means they make good candy or not.

imageName: Glutino Chocolate Coated Pretzels
Brand: Glutino Food Group
Description: Glutino’s best selling gluten free pretzels twists are not available coated in premium milk chocolate. 
Introduction Date: 04/14/10
Notes: I tried the Glutino Dark Chocolate Wafer bars earlier this year and found them to be good, but not great. I’ve been eating non-wheat pretzels for a few years and rather like them (but they’re not gluten free, they’re just made with Spelt) so the idea of a gluten free dark chocolate pretzel doesn’t seem too foreign. I’m wondering if they make a dark chocolate version. I’ll keep an eye out for them at Whole Foods.

imageName: Peppermint Nonpareils in Canisters and Gable Boxes
Brand: Asher’s Chocolates
Description: Perfect for the holidays! Asher’s Chocolates offers a line of Peppermint Nonpareils. Our rich dark chocolate is now sprinkled with real candy cane bits. The candies are packed in 7 oz. foil pouches for freshness and come in attractive, eye-catching cylinders and gable boxes that liven up any holiday displays. A Gable Box Shipper is also available. Bulk Peppermint Nonpareils are also available in both White and Dark Chocolate and come in 6 lb. boxes.
Introduction Date: 11/01/09
Notes: I missed these in the last holiday season, so I’m hoping I’ll run into them again this year.

imageName: Airheads Bars:Orange and Pink Lemonade
Brand: Perfetti van Melle
Description: Introducing the Tangy Taste of Summer - two new delicious flavors of Airheads bars - Orange and Pink Lemonade.
Introduction Date: 02/01/2010
Notes: Pink Lemonade sounds right up my alley, so I’m hoping I’ll see these at the 7-11.

imageName: sweetriot yumBar
Brand: Sweetriot, Inc.
Description: sweetriot is a New York based chocolate company creating a sweet movement to fix the world. The yumBar is sourced and produced directly in Latin America. The bar is available in two flavors. yumBar 65-65% dark chocolate with crunchy cacao ‘peaces’, and yumBar 70- 70% dark chocolate with crunchy cacao ‘peaces’ and plump golden raisins. This delectable bar is all natural, doesn’t contain gluten or dairy ingredients and is only 45-50 calories per ‘mega peace’. 
Introduction Date: 3/10,/2010
Notes: The non-traditional capitalization of these bug me, but the bar actually sounds pretty good. I’ve seen my share of cacao nib bars, but I don’t know if I’ve had one with golden raisins yet, so they’ve got that going for them.

imageName: Milk Chocolate Smothered Pita Pretzel Squares
Brand: The Bachman Company
Unlike any other snack! Our crispy, puffed Pita Pretzels are slow baked to perfection in our classic brick ovens, sprinkled with sea salt, and then smothered with rich, creamy milk chocolate for an irresistibly indulgent flavor. All Natural Chocolate Pita Pretzels are the perfect combination of salty and sweet with a unique light and airy bite.

Introduction Date: 05/24/10
Notes: I haven’t a clue what a Pita Pretzel is (I’m guessing pita is just a word for pocket?) but a sweet & savory chocolate thingy sounds good right now. I like the idea that they’re all natural, that should set them apart in the crowded chocolate covered pretzel category.

all images courtesy of the respective manufacturers

POSTED BY Cybele AT 5:15 pm     CandyNew Product AnnouncementFeatured News

Gimbal’s Honey Lovers

Gimbal's Honey LoversLast year Gimbal’s Candy introduced Cherry Lovers, a fanciful assortment of nine different cherry flavored jelly candies in the shape of hearts. It wasn’t my kind of thing and I wished that there was a citrus version. Gimbal’s went far more inventive than that and created Honey Lovers which features 16 different honey infused flavors of jelly beans.

Gimbal’s makes a wide array of panned candies and licorice but the big selling point for them is that they operate in a low-allergen facility. No peanuts, no tree nuts, no gluten, no dairy, no eggs and no soy. Honey isn’t just a flavoring here, the third ingredient on the list is actually honey. (The first two are sugar and corn syrup.)

The Honey Lovers come in either a 10 ounce bag or a 38 ounce resealable tub. Each of the hearts is colored and patterned to match their flavor. They also feature 25% of the RDA of vitamin C. On top of that, Gimbal’s is donating 5% of their sales to honey bee research at the University of California at Davis (which is just 100 miles or so away).

Gimbal's Honey Lovers

Golden Honey a wonderful and simple little jelly bean heart. It’s not a bright sweetness, it’s more of a concentrated honey with a little sugary grain from the shell ... which mimicked crystallized honey or honeycomb. The flavor was just a little different from the Jelly Belly Honey Bean, not quite as caramelized but still authentic.
Peaches and Honey tastes like peach fuzz and honey, kind of strange but true. Honey and peach have similar syrupy notes, so these go together well, kind of like a peach cobbler flavor.
Tangy Orange Honey starts our like a plain juicy orange jelly bean then becomes a deep honey flavored and smooth chew.
Buttered Honey Popcorn was the one I avoided. I detest fake butter flavor and this one had that “old movie theater” flavor. It was a little on the toffee side because of the honey, but still my least favorite of the bunch. (I’m sure some folks will be in love with it.)
Meyer Lemon Honey is kind of like a cough drop without the menthol. The lemon is light and only slightly zesty but no sign of tartness. The honey note is defined but separated from the lemon-ness, like the lemon is on the shell and the honey is in the center.

Gimbal's Honey Lovers
Cinnamon Honey wasn’t terribly strong but mostly cinnamon. I didn’t catch much honey on the end of it. Not as blazing as Gimbal’s stellar Lava Balls, but still fun and quite a change up from the rest of the primarily fruity bunch in this mix.
Black Cherry Honey has a little tartness at the front and was a very well balanced heart. The cherry flavors weren’t exceptionally strong, but still lasted well into the emergence of the honey flavors.
Honey Mocha Toffee (not pictured because I thought it was Black Cherry Honey) is just dreadful, there’s that fake butter flavor that I guess is supposed to be toffee and then a faint whiff of instant coffee. It’s like a bad hazelnut coffee creamer.
Coconut Honey is terribly sweet and with a strong tropical vibe. The coconut is strong on this one and since it’s easily confused with the vanilla, I ate it by mistake a few times. As long as you’re looking for something really coconutty, this is a great little heart.
Honey Vanilla this was my absolute favorite, I kept searching the bags for this one. It’s like a jelly bean version of the marshmallow in a See’s Scotchmallow. Fragrant and soft vanilla with the deep sweetness of honey.
Honey Raspberry is deep red and jammy sweet with just the right touch of honey at the end. The floral berry notes lingered long after the chew was gone.

Gimbal's Honey Lovers
Honey Dipped Strawberry is sweet and has that great summer taste to it, the honey isn’t a strong as the others, but then again, I didn’t need it to be with the great toasted sugar notes of the strawberry there.
Huckleberry Honey is kind of a mystery to me. I don’t know huckleberries that well, but can definitely say that the light berry and summer fruit notes have a tangy bite and a sweet finish.
Pomegranate Honey is a nondescript tart berry flavor where the honey takes over pretty quickly.
Blueberry Honey is like the other berry and fruit flavors, quite mild and mellow. I caught a faint bit of blueberry flavor to it, but mostly it tasted like a very honey-laden iced tea. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.
Orchard Pear ‘n Honey tastes rather green in the best way possible. It doesn’t have the same crunchy grain of a real pear, but the deep malty flavors of the honey go well with the grassy notes.

Overall this was a very inventive mix. Of the 16 flavors there were only two that I picked out and refused to eat (Mocha Toffee and Popcorn), and another three that I picked around but didn’t toss back in there if I got by accident. But the ones I liked, I thought were stellar (Vanilla Honey, Honey, Meyer Lemon, Strawberry). Even if I didn’t like some, there were others whom I shared these with who did, so they are a real crowd pleaser. The only suggestion I’d have would be to have a smaller flavor mix (with 5-8 flavors in a more limited color palette) that might do better for themed buffets and folks who simply buy candy for the colors.

Related Candies

  1. Eat with your Eyes: 100% Honey
  2. Jelly Belly Honey Beans
  3. Cool Honey Altoids
  4. Puffy Candy Corn
  5. Boules de Miel (balls of honey)
  6. Melville Candy Company Honey Spoons

Name: Honey Lovers
Brand: Gimbal’s Candy
Place Purchased: sample from Sweets & Snacks Expo
Price: unknown
Size: 9 ounces
Calories per ounce: 99
Categories: Candy, Gimbal's Candy, Jelly Candy, Kosher, 7-Worth It, United States

POSTED BY Cybele AT 4:13 pm     CandyGimbal's CandyJelly CandyKosher7-Worth ItUnited States

Eat with your Eyes: Vere Tiles

Vere Tiles

These are Vere Tiles from a chocolate company in New York. Package here.

POSTED BY Cybele AT 7:10 am     CandyFeatured NewsFun StuffPhotography

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Goetze’s Licorice and Double Chocolate Caramel Creams

Goetze's Caramel Creams - Licorice, Chocolate & ClassicGoetze’s introduced new Gourmet Caramel Creams last year to their line. The two new items are Licorice Caramel Creams and Double Chocolate Caramel Creams.

Licorice Caramel Creams are not new, they were made years ago and then discontinued as licorice fell out of favor and Goetze’s concentrated on the core products in their line.

The new caramel creams are formatted in the same way. A hoop of wheat-based caramel surrounds a crumbly soft sugar center. They’re individually wrapped and in the case of this new line, they’re sold in 9 ounce stand-up gusseted bags.

The gourmet part isn’t about fine, locally sourced ingredients or small batches:

As with all Goetze products, the new Gourmet Caramel Creams are low in fat and sodium, have no cholesterol, and are made with the finest wheat flour, milk and cream ingredients. However, the Licorice and Double Chocolate treats have also been fortified to enhance their quality and content. Both of the Gourmet flavors are considered a Good Source of Calcium, with a single serving of each containing 30% RDA of Calcium (the same amount as an 8oz glass of milk)! In addition, the Gourmet Caramel Creams Licorice also contains 11% RDA of fiber!

Goetze's Licorice Caramel Cream

First, I have to remind folks that Caramel Creams are a little different. They’re really not caramels at all, they’re a wheat-based chew so they’re hardly even sweet on the outside. I liken them to cookie dough, but in the case of the Licorice variety I can only say that they’re like a very chewy version of the Aussie-style of soft licorice.

The scent of the licorice is strong on the anise and reminds me of Ouzo. The molasses notes are restrained. The chew is tough and long lasting, the acidic notes of the molasses and licorice come through very well. There’s a tar quality to it, the strength is so aromatic at times it’s practically corrosive (I mean the best way possible). The cooling sugar center gives a little splash of cold water and helps spread the flavors around.

I really enjoyed these a lot. I’ve tried them several times now as samples from trade shows and I’ve been looking forward to buying a full bag for myself in stores ... if only I could find them. (Looks like OldTimeCandy.com has them, maybe I’ll have to place an order.)

They’re so different from any other licorice or caramel product. The closest thing I can think of might be a Licorice Allsort - but with a softer, fresher and more intensely-flavored chew.

Each Bullseye has 40 calories each, 10% of your calcium one gram of fat plus they’re made in a no-nuts/no peanut facility.

Goetze's Double Chocolate Caramel Cream

The second gourmet version is the Double Chocolate Caramel Cream which honestly doesn’t differ that much from the straight Chocolate Caramel Cream. Sure the center has a little cocoa in it, but the chocolate flavor is all in the caramel chew outside. The selling point here is the addition of calcium, which is substantial.

The flavor is like eating brownie batter, or the edges of a freshly cooked brownie bar where it’s really chewy. It’s not terribly sweet, so the cocoa flavors are rich and a little milky with just a slight hint of salt.

They’re both really filling and sometimes feel more like a snack than a candy.

Related Candies

  1. Panda Soft Herb Licorice and Licorice Cremes
  2. Broadway Black Licorice Rolls
  3. Bassett’s Licorice Allsorts
  4. Goetze’s Caramel Creams

Name: Licorice Caramel Creams
Brand: Goetze’s Candy Company
Place Purchased: sample from Sweets & Snacks Expo
Price: $3.69 retail
Size: 9 ounces
Calories per ounce: 100
Categories: Candy, Goetze, Chews, Licorice Candy, 8-Tasty, United States

Name: Double Chocolate Caramel Creams
Brand: Goetze’s Candy Company
Place Purchased: sample from Sweets & Snacks Expo
Price: $3.69 retail
Size: 9 ounces
Calories per ounce: 108
Categories: Candy, Goetze, Chews, 8-Tasty, United States

POSTED BY Cybele AT 5:07 pm     CandyChewsLicorice Candy8-TastyUnited States

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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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