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Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Mike and Ike Jolly Joes

Purple is the best color ever. It’s the best of both worlds - half blue and half red, like a melting pot of America. When I was a teenager and on the swim team I had two sets of sweats - both were purple. I loved purple and often wore it head to toe (with purple Robin Hood boots). My attraction to grape candies is based largely on this affinity for the color and possibly influenced my love of grapefruit even though it has no grape in it and isn’t purple.

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I had a good experience with the Mike and Ike Tangy Twisters and was hoping with something at least equal to that, after all, Jolly Joes have been around a lot longer, so you’d think they’d have something going for them.

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They’re very dark, such a dark purple I’d call it eggplant. They smell fake-grapey, with a slight odor of Bic pen ink. When you first place it on the tongue, there’s a slight tangy tingle, but that soon goes away and there’s very little flavor. They’re soft and chewy like a jelly bean, but with very little going on. At the end the flavor is more like cotton candy than grape. Not really very jolly at all.

Special note: this package has both a manufactured date and expiration date ... all in plain English. Hooray for clarity! However, the back of the package was also printed in Hebrew (I think it’s Hebrew, it’s going right to left). I have no idea what market these were intended for, that’s what you get at the 99 Cent Only Store!

Name: Mike and Ike Jolly Joes
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Just Born
Place Purchased: 99 Cent Only Store
Price: $.25
Size: 2.12 ounces
Calories per ounce: unknown
Categories: Jelly, United States, Just Born, Kosher

POSTED BY Cybele AT 7:13 am     Comments (7)

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Trader Joe’s Mini Peanut Butter Cups

Every great candy has variations in size. Of course shrinking or enlarging a candy doesn’t necessarily make it better, in fact, it usually makes it different. Same components, just different ratios.

imageTrader Joe’s has gone and mucked around with their Peanut Butter Cups. These are made by the same manufacturer but are wee-tiny. Seriously, you can hardly call them cups. They look like knobs. Little peanut butter and milk chocolate knobs.

The little knobs don’t have flat tops, so they don’t sit quite right, they roll over easily. The easiset way to line them up is to have the top of the cup facing down ... which makes them more knob-like.

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The ratio on these definitely leans towards chocolate over peanut butter. The chocolate is cool and sweet and slightly grainy, but matched well with the dash salty peanut butter.

It’s quite easy to just grab a handful of these out of the tub. And of course being chocolate they start to melt in your hand and you have to pop them in your mouth ... then you’ve got an empty hand and need to repeat. So the tub can go quickly. I know it’s tempting to want peanut butter cups with out the little fluted paper cup so that you can shovel them into your maw faster, but really no one needs anything to improve the efficiency of gobbling Trader Joe’s candy.

In the end I kept eating them because I wanted more peanut butter. I think I’ll stick to my Reese’s miniatures.

Note: Yes, I’ve been eating a lot of peanut-heavy candies lately, I credit it to the change in the weather. Some people think fall is all about spice, I think it’s all about nuts.

Related Candies

  1. Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramels
  2. Daffin’s Candies Factory & World’s Largest Candy Store
  3. Trader Joe’s Espresso Chocolate
  4. Disneyland for Candy Bloggers
  5. Maud Borup Potato Chips
  6. Trader Joe’s Chocolate Covered Banana Chips
Name: Mini Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Trader Joe's
Place Purchased: Trader Joe's (Silverlake)
Price: $2.99
Size: 12 ounces
Calories per ounce: 158
Categories: Chocolate, Peanuts, United States, Trader Joe's, Kosher

POSTED BY Cybele AT 6:10 am     Comments (28)

Monday, October 9, 2006

Atkinson’s Peanut Butter Bar

Ever want a Chick-o-Stick without the coconut? Well, Atkinson’s makes those, too, though they come with the rather boring name of Peanut Butter Bars.

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They’re not really bars, either. They’re more like rods. About the size and shape of a cigar or pretzel rod, they’re a hard candy shell with a crunchy peanut butter honeycomb center.

The candy actually comes in a variety of sizes, I usually see a small “changemaker” size with little one bite, individually-wrapped morsels. I like the ratio on this rods quite a bit, it’s a lot more peanut butter honeycomb than it is a hard candy. It has a nice flaky quality with a good salty hit and nutty crunch. It’s really crunchy, which is a great plus and they’re not nearly as messy as the Chick-o-Sticks but also a good all-weather candy.

Atkinson’s also makes something called a Pico-o-Sito which is a spicy peanut butter candy. Sounds pretty good to me, why can’t I find them at a store near me? Atkinson’s does have a nice website where you can order all of their candy and at pretty good prices (and free shipping).

Interesting fact from the website: Chick-o-Sticks & Peanut Butter Bars are vegan - there are no animal products in there (however, it depends on how observant you are on the sugar thing, their site doesn’t say if they use cane sugar or beet sugar).

Name: Peanut Butter Bars
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Atkinson's
Place Purchased: 99 Cent Only Store
Price: $.33
Size: 1.7 ounces
Calories per ounce: 129
Categories: Peanuts, Hard Candy, United States, Atkinson's

POSTED BY Cybele AT 7:51 am     Comments (26)

Sunday, October 8, 2006

September Search Strings

Here’s a list of what brought folks to Candy Blog through search engines during the month of September:

1. m&ms
2. buttefinger
3. kissables
4. halloween candy
5. razzles
6. rockaleta
7. gobstoppers
8. reese’s
9. turkish delight
10. choxie

Again, just because that’s what brought then to Candy Blog, that doesn’t mean that these were the most popular candy searches lately it’s just what’s on Candy Blog reader’s minds.

POSTED BY Cybele AT 6:59 pm     CandySearch StringsNews

Friday, October 6, 2006

Endangered Species: Milk Chocolate with Peanut Butter

Around this time last year I barely knew what Fair Trade was and there really weren’t that many chocolate products out there that were Fair Trade Certified. Now you can not only get cocoa and plain dark chocolate, but also some pretty cool flavored chocolate bars. Endangered Species seems to be leading the way with the Fair Trade “candy” bars in their new Premium Organic line.

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Each bar is a single serving and easy to pick up at the checkout of your favorite “wholesome” market like Whole Foods, Wild Oats or Zoo gift shop.

Along with the Fair Trade and organic certifications, this bar boasts high cocoa content of 52% (high for a milk chocolate). This wrapper has a giraffe on the label and everyone knows that the pattern on giraffes is known as the peanut shell. (Okay, I made that part up.)

The chocolate is buttery smooth and very sweet on the tongue. It has very strong smoky qualities with a slight bitterness at the start but a good nutty flavor. Once I start eating the bar, the unpleasant burnt quality goes away, but each time I stop and start I have to go through the process all over again. I’m afraid I can’t give it the highest marks because of that. Now, I’m one of those “supertaster” people, so I tend to be more sensitive to bitter, so your mileage may vary.

Interesting fact about giraffes from the wrapper: A giraffe’s neck contains seven vertebrae, just like ours.

Name: Smooth Organic Milk Chocolate with Peanut Butter
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Endangered Species
Place Purchased: samples from Endangered Species
Price: retail ~$1.49
Size: 1.4 ounces
Calories per ounce: 157
Categories: Chocolate, Peanuts, United States, Endangered Species, Kosher, Organic, Fair Trade

POSTED BY Cybele AT 7:21 am     Comments (4)

Thursday, October 5, 2006

Brain Candy! (gummi brains)

Brains! Brains! Must eat brains!

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I don’t have much to say ... they’re gummis in the shape of brains. The colors vary, some with blue in them, some white and pink or red. But they’re all the same fruity, berry flavor.

They’re lovely, if you like to look at brains. They have nice folds and detail, with a good left-brain/right-brain distinction. They’re soft and very fragrant.

I got mine in a large bag of 6.6 pounds. Yes, that’s as much as two actual human brains weigh! I know that the human brain weighs three pounds because there’s a show coming on CBS mid-season called 3 LBS that’s about brain surgeons! (This is different from the piece of information we gleaned from Jerry Maguire that the human head weighs 8 lbs - which I figure includes the skull and eyeballs and stuff.)

If you’re a zombie fan and are planning a big movie extravaganza for Halloween, you probably need 6.6 pounds of brains. I have the large brains here, they’re about 1 3/4” lengthwise, which is a good size for a three-bite brain. They also come in a little, one bite size. I kind of miss the variety of flavors like you get with gummi bears. But the appearance of a good squishy candy brain is pretty good. They’d be fun cupcake toppers, too.

Name: Gummi Brains (Large)
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Lutti
Place Purchased: samples from CandyWarehouse.com
Price: $27
Size: 6.6 pounds
Calories per ounce: 132
Categories: Gummi, Belgium, Halloween

POSTED BY Cybele AT 6:41 am     Comments (8)

Wednesday, October 4, 2006

Peanut Butter Kisses

These aren’t really called Peanut Butter Kisses ... I believe those are molasses taffy with a bit of peanut butter inside of them and are often wrapped in black or orange waxed paper with twisted ends. The real name of these is Hershey’s Kisses filled with Peanut Butter.

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PB Kisses were introduced as a limited edition item but were quickly deemed popular enough to become part of the regular repertoire and were added in June 2006.

The PB Kiss sports a light gold wrapper with red wiggly stripes and the word Peanut Butter on the foil. The little red flags say Peanut Butter as well. The Kisses look a little different out of the wrapper, the shell is smoother. These Kisses are molded instead of being extruded, so they’re shiny.

Inside the milk chocolate shell is a little dab of peanut butter filling. It’s got a good roasted flavor with a little hit of salt. It’s not super-smoothed like a Reese’s Pieces, but more like the inside of a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup (but not quite as crumbly).

They’re very tasty and quite addictive. The only problem I have with them is they’re a little greasy feeling when you take them out of the foil - I know that’s because of the peanut butter.

I’m not quite sure why these needed to be created though ... how different are then from the Reese’s Miniatures, except that there’s only one wrapper on them instead of a cup and a wrapper? The ratio, which everyone knows is very important with peanut butter items, is different though - there’s less peanut butter to chocolate here. So if you’re a chocolate fan but not so keen on a giganto hit of peanut butter, this may be your new favorite candy.

I picked these up at the 99 Cent Only Store and at 99 cents for an 11 ounce bag, they’re quite a deal. Don’t worry, they’re not three years old or anything, I’ve got the Hershey’s code!

Name: Kisses filled with Peanut Butter
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Hershey's
Place Purchased: 99 Cent Only Store
Price: 99 cents!
Size: 11 ounces
Calories per ounce: 159
Categories: Chocolate, Peanut, United States, Hershey

POSTED BY Cybele AT 8:52 am     Comments (7)

Equal Exchange Halloween Kit

Equal Exchange has a new kit just for Halloween and Fair Trade celebrating and GreenLAGirl has the complete scoop.

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Basically it’s a fun kit that includes Equal Exchange miniatures (perfect for tossing in those trick or treat bags) as well as some decorations and informative cards about fair trade.

Because October is Fair Trade month, you can get a special discount: 10% off on all orders of $20 or more use the coupon code ftm2006. So throw in an additional bag of the miniatures to make the minimum and you’re good to go for your Green Halloween!

Here’s the original review of the chocolates.

POSTED BY Cybele AT 7:30 am     CandyGreen HalloweenReviewHalloweenEqual ExchangeChocolateEthically Sourced8-TastyComments (0)

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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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COUNTDOWN

Halloween Candy Season Ends

-28 days

Read previous coverage

 

 

Which seasonal candy selection do you prefer?

Choose one or more:

  •   Halloween
  •   Christmas
  •   Valentine's Day
  •   Easter

 

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ON DECK

These candies will be reviewed shortly:

• Theo Chocolate Nutcracker Brittle

• Orgran Molasses Licorice

• Rogue Chocolatier

• Godiva Chef Inspirations

• Hachez Braune Blatter (Chocolate Leaves)

 

 

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