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Gummi Candy

These are chewy.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Wii Candy Dispenser & Nintendo Gummis

Wii Klik-on Candy DispenserI’ve been waiting for a long time for a really good crossover from the confectionery world to the gaming world.

Please note, I’m not a gamer. I do play, but not enough to be anything more than personally aware of how addictive and fun these things can be, but it takes a special game to suck me in. At home we have an XBOX 360 right now (loved the Lego Star Wars last summer), before that it was a PS2 and before that it was a Turbo Grafx (well, that wasn’t technically mine, I was “storing” it for my brother while he was living in Europe).

I’ve never played the Wii, but I totally see the attraction and I love the selection of games.

Wii Klik-on Candy Dispenser

To capitalize on the affection folks have for their platforms, Au’some has these cute little Wii Klik-on Candy Dispensers shaped like the innovative game controllers (Wiimote).

Wii Klik-on Candy DispenserThey’re officially licensed (and who would have thought that plain old proprietary hardware would end up being a status symbol like this) so they bear all the proper design elements.

It’s just a dispenser, like PEZ, and it comes with four rolls of candy - two Smarties-like rolls and two mini-rolls of Smarties Bubble Gum. The rolls fit in the battery compartment (because they’re the same size as batteries).

Wii Klik-on Candy DispenserIn order to load the candy package, just slide the faceplate up and it reveals a small empty space (probably where there’d be some circuitry if it worked). The candies are placed flat then the controller tipped down slightly, the little trigger button on the underside of the top is pressed, and bingo, a piece of candy comes out.

PEZ does not fit in the Wii Candy Dispenser, just like Nintendo Wii games don’t work in XBox 360.

I think the design of the item is pretty cute. I wish it put out really cool candy, it’s like they spent all that time on the plastic box and then said, “Eh, throw some Smarties in there.” It doesn’t even hold a whole roll of Smarties at once (though the battery compartment holding more is pretty ingenious). Filling it with something better would improve the appeal of this.

The retail price on these is $2 or so, but who knows what they’re going for in the wild. I got this one as a sample from All Candy Expo. They can be found on the internet and at places like Urban Outfitters.

Rating: 5 out of 10

On the other side of things, Au’some has another line of candies also themed off of a more classic Nintendo product: Mario Bros. They’re called Nintendo 3D Gummy Candies.

The Donkey Kong & Mario Bros. characters have been around since 1981 and have become recurring characters in the Nintendo game pantheon, so these aren’t some flash in the pan licensing tie-ins. Even if you’ve never played or haven’t in years, most of us have great affection for the little Italian plumber who battles the strange ape named Donkey.

imageMario is a hardworking guy. Not only does he hold a contractors license and perform excellent plumbing work, in the original version of the game he was a carpenter. He’s also a superhero. He can rescue a damsel in distress or vanquish an infestation of angry apes all on the clock.

The Mario 3D Gummi is, well, awesome. It’s actually three dimensional. At about 2.75 inches tall, he’s the same height as his gummi brethren, though pretty narrow (I guess he slimmed down for his session with the mold-maker). His little hat has an M on it and he has big work boots.

The texture of the gummis short, that is, biting into it, it’s not at all stringy. It’s more like Jell-O than Swedish Fish.

Mario is Strawberry. He’s sweet and slightly floral, a little tangy and has a well-rounded artificial berry flavor. I think he’s two bites, but it’s up to you.

imageDonkey Kong actually started this whole thing with his game named after him. Mario was simply known as Jumpman back then. Donkey didn’t have much of a personality either, he was just angry and grabby.

In later years Donkey Kong started wearing a tie, which might have caused part of his anger issue (it was the go-go-eighties, even Donkey Kong learned a lot from Gordon Gecko). But Donkey Kong never really returned to his primary role, this is the sad fate of monsters.

In this gummi Donkey Kong is Orange in both color and flavor. He’s actually rather sparkly. The flavor of the gummi isn’t particularly complex, rather like concentrated Tang.

Definitely one of my favorites and it wouldn’t be a batch of gummis without Donkey Kong or an orange flavor.

imageDiddy Kong is probably not even technically a Kong. (I think they call him a nephew somewhere, but that’s like saying that humans and orangutans are cousins.) Though he’s some sort of ape, he’s not the same species as Donkey Kong. I think he’s some sort of chimp, as far as I can tell (he has smaller, narrower chest).

But he also wears a cap and tee shirt. While Donkey Kong was the big bad guy in many of the adventures, Diddy is the one who sets off to rescue Donkey Kong, in a way redeeming the Kong family name.

(For a while I thought it was Donkey Kong Junior, feel free to dispute this in the comments.)

He’s a lovely aqua color and Raspberry flavored. Tangy, pretty zesty and flavorful.

imageFinally we have Yoshi. Yoshi is some sort of baby dinosaur and is one of the only characters who displays any sense of self preservation (when you’re not in control of course) and actually runs from danger.

His large snout makes it nearly impossible to sit this gummi upright (if you feel like lining them all up like some sort of action figure display). I took this photo by holding him in place, releasing my finger, then snapping the shot before he fell over.

While he’s cute and has wonderful detail with his little crest and buggy eyes, the flavor is weird. I think it’s supposed to be watermelon or green apple. It’s kind of metallic but tangy. It’s not bad as long as you don’t get too hung up on what it is.

The Nintendo 3D Gummy Candies are available in bags at grocery stores, drug stores and at other specialty shops. I got mine from CandyWarehouse, who sells them in bulk, just individually wrapped. (Of course you also end up with a 100 of them.) It’s a much better price than most of the smaller packages. Individual wrapping means they stay fresh and you can throw them in a bowl at a party or gaming night.

Rating: 7 out of 10

(If video games aren’t your bag but you think that this 3-D Gummi technology is cool enough to eat, try the Wildlife ones where they also say that they’re donating money to protect endangered species.)

Victoria has a cool list of other Nintendo-themed candies at Candy Addict.

Related Candies

  1. Mint Crisp M&Ms (Indiana Jones)
  2. Ratatouille Pocket Slider Lollipop
  3. Gummy Fishies
  4. Bubble Roll Message Maker
  5. Gummi Lightning Bugs

POSTED BY Cybele AT 7:36 am     CandyReviewAu'some CandyCompressed DextroseGumGummi CandyNovelty/Toy5-Pleasant7-Worth ItChinaComments (15)

Friday, May 23, 2008

Albanese Gummi Butterflies

I was in love with these gummis sight unseen. I saw the teaser on the All Candy Expo website New Product Showcase. There was no photo ... but the description alone Gummi Butterflies: Bold colors and delicious flavors. Flutter away with the newest version of the World’s Best Gummi! convinced me that these were going to be gorgeous.

image

Everything Albanese makes in the gummi category is lovely.

Krunchy BearsTheir Krunchy Bears (and other ring & heart shapes) are pure delights to look at and offer a new twist on the gummi + crunch. They offer at least 15 different flavors of gummi bears not to mention other gummi items like green army men & fighter jets, and at really reasonable prices.

If I have any complaints about the company, it’s that they don’t have a very good website featuring their candies and the online ordering section doesn’t have all their products.

When I got them in my set of sample items from All Candy Expo, I practically squealed because they were just what I hoped they were.

They’re large gummis, about 3 inches across at the widest. Thick and soft (mine were a little bent in spots, but they were stuffed in a tiny ziploc), they remind me of Gel Gems. So that’s what I did with them, I went into the guest room, wiped the window to clean it and then slapped them up on the glass.

Albanese Butterfly Gummis

I could see these being great fun to have in the car with kids on a road trip. Edible window decorations. (Though do keep some window cleaner handy, as they get things greasy eventually.)

I felt rather evil as I was essentially eating the wings off the butterflies, but it’s the only obvious way to eat them. (Though a non-obvious and perhaps more interesting way to eat them would be to fold the wings and take a bit out of them ... then put them back up on the window, or perhaps cut them apart and piece them together much like I did with franken-bears as a kid.)

  • Orange - soft and chewy with strong tangy taste. Not complex or zesty like some, more like orange-ade.
  •  

  • Blue Raspberry - quite tart with a good floral berry taste. As an added bonus, there are actually butterflies that are this color.
  •  

  • Concord Grape - I can’t say that I’ve had many grape gummis, this was in the SweeTart family of artificial grape flavors. It wasn’t very strong, lightly tangy.
  •  

  • Watermelon (pink) - really much too sour for watermelon. What’s great about real watermelons is that they’re sweet and mellow, bursting with quenching water. Instead this is like chewing on the unripe rind ... just a too acidic and artificial tasting.
  •  

  • Wild Cherry (red) - a bit mellower than the other flavors. It’s a bit tangy, but not too much. It’s a good black cherry flavor, much like a chewy LifeSaver.
  • I wish their pineapple was in this mix, but maybe it wasn’t vibrant enough in color.

    Other new products introduced this week:

    Gummi Sugar Plums: Visions of these flavorful Sugar Plums will be dancing in your head all year long!

    Theater Size Boxes: Fantastic value, attractive, eye catching theater boxes will be a real hit with customers! Available in our popular and unique 12 Flavor Gummi Bears and Super Sour Mini Neon Gummi Worms.

    There’s no word how the Butterflies will be sold, but I’d expect them to turn up in the same tubs & packages that they use for their other novelty items like the Army Men and of course in bulk bins.

    Related Candies

    1. Meiji Gummy Choco
    2. Gummy Fishies
    3. Brain Candy! (gummi brains)
    4. Haribo Fizzy Cola
    5. Gummi Lightning Bugs
    6. Endangered Species Chocolate
    Name: Gummi Butterflies
      RATING:
    • 10 SUPERB
    • 9 YUMMY
    • 8 TASTY
    • 7 WORTH IT
    • 6 TEMPTING
    • 5 PLEASANT
    • 4 BENIGN
    • 3 UNAPPEALING
    • 2 APPALLING
    • 1 INEDIBLE
    Brand: Albanese Confectionery
    Place Purchased: samples from All Candy Expo
    Price: unknown
    Size: unknown
    Calories per ounce: unknown
    Categories: Gummi, United States, Albanese Confectionery

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 6:43 am     Comments (10)

    Friday, May 2, 2008

    Chocolate Covered Gummi Bears

    Chocolate Covered Gummi BearsThere are a few candies still on my list of “I can’t believe you haven’t tried that before!” and chocolate covered gummi bears were one of them. Once I had the Japanese version, I realized I should try the original. They were invented over 30 years ago by none other than the ultimate “if it should be covered in chocolate, we’ll cover it in chocolate” company: Koppers Chocolates.

    When I was in San Francisco I found not only Koppers Milk Chocolate Covered Gummi Bears, but also the White Chocolate Polar Bears at Sweet Dish on Chestnut Street.

    I’m not sure why I’ve been reticent about trying them. It might be that I was expecting a Haribo gummi bear, which are rather firm. Instead Koppers uses Swiss gummis (I don’t know anything beyond that) that they are appropriately soft.

    Chocolate Covered Gummi BearsI got just a quarter of a pound each of mixed milk & polar bears to try. What struck me at first was the fact that all the white chocolate bears were the same milky yellow color. Even held up to the light, there was no indication what color the gummi bear beneath was.

    What I found out later, after diligently sucking the chocolate off of enough of them for a scientific sample, is that they’re all the same color (whether milk or white covered)! Though they’re yellow, I’m hard pressed to say that they’re lemon flavored, merely that they’re a sweet & tangy mix.

    The milk chocolate was pretty smooth, and very milky tasting. It melted well and didn’t have that light waxy glaze that many other panned candies have. The white chocolate was similarly milky in its taste, but not too sweet. As a combination goes, I still wasn’t completely on board with having chocolate with my gummi bears. They’re cute and easy to eat, but I think I might like them apart.

    Rating: 6 out of 10

    Muddy BearsTo be fair, even though Koppers invented the confectionery genre of chocolate covered gummi bears, the ones I see most often in drug stores, movie theaters & discount chains are called Muddy Bears and are made by Taste of Nature (who also makes Cookie Dough Bites) which I think is an awesome name for an unappetizing looking product.

    The box features a yellow bear who is entirely too happy to be covered in chocolate. I’m not sure if he understands that once he’s sealed in his confectionery shell he’s doomed.

    I’ve only seen them in the theater sized boxes. Inside the box is a cellophane pouch that holds the bears and keeps them fresh. (And makes for extra wrapper noises at the theater and probably scowly looks from me if I’m sitting near.)

    Muddy BearsAs unattractive as the Koppers were, I think the Muddy Bears are even worse. But since they’re meant to be eaten at the movies based on the packaging, I’m going to guess that doesn’t matter much. (For the record, I like candy that looks the same after sitting unwrapped at the bottom of my purse, so that when I switch purses and find it down there, I know what it is ... and then I eat it.)

    One of the big differences in the products is the gummi center. Muddy Bears use multi-flavored gummis. Of course being covered in milk chocolate there’s no way to know which flavor is which. It’s a benign chocolate-covered Russian roulette. Mostly I seemed to get green apple.

    The chocolate coating seems a bit crumbly, not as smooth melting as the Koppers and very sweet without much of a “chocolate” taste. I can’t see myself buying these.

    Candy Addict did a review last summer as well, interestingly, their photo of the box says, “The Original”, I’m guessing Koppers took issue with the accuracy and they’ve changed it to the version I have.

    Rating: 4 out of 10

    Meiji Gummy Choco set the bar too high. Their candies come in lots of different flavors, they’re packaged so nicely, the price is right even for an import and if you get a flavor mix, they’re color coded. But if you’re not able to get a hold of those, give the Koppers a try (you’ll probably see them in bulk bins), if the shop also carries chocolate cordials, they’re probably Koppers.

    Related Candies

    1. The Simpsons Fruit Snacks
    2. Sour Gummi Bears
    3. Krunchy Bears
    4. Chocolate Covered Sugar Babies
    5. Haribo Gummi Bears vs Trolli Gummi Bears
    Name: Milk Chocolate Covered Gummi Bears & Polar Bears and Muddy Bears
      RATING:
    • 10 SUPERB
    • 9 YUMMY
    • 8 TASTY
    • 7 WORTH IT
    • 6 TEMPTING
    • 5 PLEASANT
    • 4 BENIGN
    • 3 UNAPPEALING
    • 2 APPALLING
    • 1 INEDIBLE
    Brand: Koppers Chocolates & Taste of Nature
    Place Purchased: Sweet Dish (SF) & samples from Taste of Nature
    Price: $10/lb & $1.29 retail
    Size: 6 ounces & 3.1 ounces
    Calories per ounce: 100/113 & 99
    Categories: Chocolate, White Chocolate, Gummi, United States, Taste of Nature, Koppers

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 8:59 am     Comments (11)

    Tuesday, April 29, 2008

    Van Slooten - Autodrop Total Loss

    Autodrop Total LossSometimes I buy candy just because of what it’s called.

    In this case, it’s an assortment of little car shaped candies called Autodrop Total Loss. It includes 11 different flavors in one bag (Elf Heerlijke Smaken in een Zak).

    I thought that the “total loss” thing meant something different in Dutch, but honestly I can’t figure out if it’s a cognate or not. I thought maybe it was something like “massive pile up” but internet translators are only good with verbatim things, not interpretive use of language.

    The purple bag has whimsical drawings of cars motoring down the street, making little “toet, toet” sounds, which I’m guessing is like “putt, putt”. The style of the drawings reminds me of Quentin Blake (whom many of us were introduced to via Charlie & the Chocolate Factory).

    Total Loss (no really, that's what it's called)

  • Klein Zacht Fiatje (little black car) - this is sweet and a little woodsy tasting. Not quite licorice, it’s a little like brown sugar but maybe a little hint of menthol in there. It’s chewy and soft, reminds me a bit of those old Pine Brothers cough drops (before they got really stale).
  •  

  • Zacht Kadettje is the larger car driving to the left, it has two layers, a light layer on the bottom and a black layer on the top. It’s much like the Klein Zacht Fiatje, the base layer is a little more like a mello-creme, kind of soft and grainy and less chewy. Still a very mellow woodsy flavor.
  •  

  • Dubbele Dubbeldekker (red & black bus) is a firm, berry flavored “fruit gum” candy with a little hint of licorice to it, a little dash of mild salt. It’s kind of odd, the berry isn’t that strong, but neither is the licorice.
  •  

  • Aardbei Rode Cadillac (red gummi Caddy) is a strawberry fruit gum. It’s soft and has a pretty intense flavor. Not quite as floral or aromatic as the German strawberry candies I’ve had, this one is more like a strawberry jam flavor. 
  •  

  • Bovsrucht Paarse Chevy is pretty much the same as the Caddy, a mild cassis or cherry, depending on the color. Again, it tastes more like the preseves of the fruits than the fresh ones. (Not a bad thing, just different.) 
  •  

  • Dubbel Frisse Fruit Limo came in a couple of color combos: green and red or red and yellow. The green & red tasted a bit like lime & strawberry.  Red and yellow was a similar mild lemon and berry (but possibly cassis, I can’t be sure).
  •  

  • Romige Rolls (beige Rolls Royce) was a dreamy caramelized mellow cream. Kind of like the crust of a toasted marshmallow. I ate them several different ways. I sucked on them like a lozenge (though they do get a little grainy towards the center) and others I just chewed up. They’re much harder than candy corn, probably because they have some sort of thickener/binder like gelatin in them. I believe the translation of the word toffeeschium is “toffee foam” which is pretty much what this was. Tasty simplicity.
  •  

  • Colaflesje Op Wieland (Cola bottle on wheels) - this one was easy. It was a mild and tangy cola gummi. A little too much on the tangy side and not enough cola, but still, a tasty and comforting piece.
  • If I were able to translate all the descriptions in the shop I would have known that none of the black ones were actually licorice, so with my expectations now set aside, these were tasty and fun. The variety is huge and the molding of all the items is fun and different. I don’t see myself buying this particular mix again, but there are other Autodrops that are actually licorice (called Drop Donders that includes sweet, salt, honey and salmiak licorice) that I might give a try based on the quality of this product.

    Autodrops contain gelatin so are unsuitable for vegetarians (and don’t appear to be Kosher either).

    Many thanks to Babelfish for helping me at least translate some of the words from the package.

    Related Candies

    1. Licorice Assortment
    2. Brach’s Autumn Mix
    3. Haribo Fizzy Cola
    4. Bassett’s Licorice Allsorts
    5. Frugal Swedish Sweets
    Name: Autodrop Total Loss
      RATING:
    • 10 SUPERB
    • 9 YUMMY
    • 8 TASTY
    • 7 WORTH IT
    • 6 TEMPTING
    • 5 PLEASANT
    • 4 BENIGN
    • 3 UNAPPEALING
    • 2 APPALLING
    • 1 INEDIBLE
    Brand: Van Slooten
    Place Purchased: Holland's Best (San Jose)
    Price: $3.15
    Size: 6.17 ounces
    Calories per ounce: unknown
    Categories: Gummi, Netherlands

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 7:46 am     Comments (8)

    Friday, April 25, 2008

    Brach’s Gummi+Plus & Tropical Gummis

    Brach's Gummi+PlusWhen I was afraid I was getting sick earlier this winter I turned to candy. After all, many candies started out as medicine. The cough drops of yesteryear are the root beer barrels and cherry LifeSavers of today. Sometimes I eat vitamin C enriched hard candies, figuring, what could it hurt and it might help.

    The government keeps candy companies from making grandiose claims, but that doesn’t stop them from trying to nudge us to buy something because it might have nutritional value (I seriously doubt I’m at high risk for scurvy). I spied these Brach’s Gummi+Plus (is that supposed to be said aloud as Gummi Plus Plus?) at the 7-11 and though they might ease an aching throat. I was also intrigued because they had different flavors: Cranberry, Pomegranate, Orange, Apple, Strawberry & Blueberry. I was really curious to taste a pomegranate or cranberry gummi!

    They look just like any other gummis, each in a little fruit shape. What gives these their +Plus is an infusion of three antioxidants: 25% of your RDA of vitamin A, Vitamin C & Vitamin E.

    Though they’re throwing “immune boosting” powers at us, it’s obvious that they didn’t really commit to the whole line, as they didn’t even bother to make up molds for these new fruits.

    blueBlueberry looks like a bunch of grapes. Let me tell you, blueberries do not grow in bunches.

    Besides the freaky shape and unnatural color, the flavor is, well, kind of like a berry of some sort. You could tell me it’s a black raspberry and I’d probably believe you.

    strawberryThe Strawberry looks comfortingly familiar. What’s more, it’s a delicate shade of light red (though actual strawberries are a very deep and rich color).

    It’s soft and tangy and has a good strawberry jam flavor to it.

    Not exciting in a plus plus way, but tasty.

    purpleThe package had no purple on it, but did show a red “berry” that I’m going to guess is this one: Pomegranate. The shape is a pretty good patch to what pomegranate seeds look like if you peel away the membrane carefully.

    It’s quite a good flavor, like a combination of raspberry and cherry ... not quite pomegranate, but certainly a lot less fuss.

    appleVery traditional shape for the Apple and of course they go with the green instead of red.

    It’s a good apple juice flavor instead of just the fake green apple (but there’s a little bit of that in there too).

    In fact, the ingredients list apple juice as an ingredient (I’m guessing they use it instead of a splash of water so they can say “made with real fruit juice!”

    redYou’re thinking, oh, that’s cherry. Uh, uh. This is Cranberry. I’m also here to tell you that cranberries do not grown on paired stems like this.

    No matter, this one is much like the pomegranate. Very deep, with a much more tart and acidic overtone. I welcome the cranberry to the gummi mix! I hope it sticks around, as far as super sours go, cranberries are overlooked.

    orangeAh, the classic Orange. This one has a lot of zest to it, almost too much. It’s downright bitter.

    I rather liked that, it made it feel more medicinal, more like candied orange peel or some sort of soothing tea.

    As far as the antioxidant properties, I still got the flu, but then again I didn’t finish the bag until I decided to write these up while I’m traveling. (Gummis are great traveling candy.) I couldn’t detect any flavors that were particularly indicative of “vitamins” and vitamin E can be like that sometimes.

    Brach's Tropical Gummis

    Brach’s also offers an assortment of Tropical Gummis. One of the fun parts of this was that the only flavor that intersected with the Gummi +Plus was Orange. I got to test whether the fortified gummis really tasted different from the regular ones. (Nope.)

    You can tell here, too, that they’re similar molds.

    Orange was just as zesty.

    Purple was probably raspberry. It’s hard to tell because there is no retail label on the bulk bag. It tastes like a very sweet raspberry jam.

    Strawberry Banana was kind of cute. At first I didn’t know what that shape was. But the pink color and mild, sweet strawberry flavor (less tart than the Gummi +Plus) kind of cinched it. It reminds me a little of yogurt. The banana component is a little artificial tasting, but that’s okay with me.

    Lime was cute. It’s nice to see lime instead of apple. It was zesty, a little bit of that bitterness that I noticed in the orange, but definitely convincing.

    Lemon was pretty dark in color and I often mistook it for the orange. The shape and size were perfect, but the flavor was sadly bland. Not bad, just not rising to the same level as the rest.

    Pineapple was what drew me to this mix in the first place. Look at it, it’s a cute little pineapple shaped gummi! Soft and tangy, with the floral note and that little thing that only pineapple can do to the salivary glands. (But luckily it didn’t burn my tongue, like I do sometimes with fresh pineapple.)

    The texture of the gummis is far softer than something like Haribo, but not quite as pliable as Trolli. They do well sitting out, I left some out on my desk, and though the outside was a little drier after a weekend, they were still soft. The flavors are distinct, the molding very good and of course the price is quite reasonable. So many of the Brach’s candies are made overseas, these were made in the USA.

    Related Candies

    1. Starburst GummiBursts
    2. The Simpsons Fruit Snacks
    3. Krunchy Bears
    4. Gummi Lightning Bugs
    5. Lifesaver Gummies
    6. Haribo Gummi Bears vs Trolli Gummi Bears
    Name: Gummi +Plus & Tropical Gummis
      RATING:
    • 10 SUPERB
    • 9 YUMMY
    • 8 TASTY
    • 7 WORTH IT
    • 6 TEMPTING
    • 5 PLEASANT
    • 4 BENIGN
    • 3 UNAPPEALING
    • 2 APPALLING
    • 1 INEDIBLE
    Brand: Brach's
    Place Purchased: 7-11 & samples from CandyWarehouse
    Price: $1.49
    Size: 6 ounces & 6.6 pounds
    Calories per ounce: 103
    Categories: Gummi, United States, Brach's

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 5:11 am     Comments (7)

    Tuesday, April 15, 2008

    Starburst GummiBursts

    In that grand shipment of goodies from Mars last month I also got a box of these, Starburst GummiBursts.

    DSC09665br

    They’re a new product hitting the shelves in the US,  described as Liquid Filled Gummies. They come in four flavors: Strawberry, Cherry, Orange & Lemon.

    The package also boasts that they have Real Fruit Juice! and Great Fruit Taste(r).

    I thought the package was a little light at only 1.5 ounces (a package of Skittles or Starburst are over 2 ounces for the same price). But then again, with the light caloric density, that makes a package only 140 calories.

    DSC09676rb

    Inside the little medallions are a little larger around than a nickel.

    Each gummi has the juicy S on it and beneath that little dome of the letter lurks the burst. Biting into the firm gummi, there is definitely a thick flavored syrup center.

    The gummi texture isn’t as rubbery as some, it doesn’t have that bounce.

    The liquid is thick and tangy, but pretty much the same as the gummi, but in a different texture. The flavors, well, they’re the same as the Starburst chews.

    At first the goo center squicked me out, but I got used to it. But it never really did much for me. They’re a “moister” feeling gummi, but that solves a problem I didn’t really have. The flavors in the package, though consistent with what’s in a regular Starburst Chews package, just don’t seem to do much for me. They’re not quite tangy enough to get my salivary glands going, they’re just plain ordinary. Of course if one of my initials was S, I’d probably be more partial to these.

    These were announced by Mars early this year, but I’ve not seen them on store shelves and can’t seem to find them anywhere online.

    The package says that they’re gluten free. They do contain gelatin (of indeterminate origin) and are unsuitable for vegans.

    Related Candies

    1. Starburst Berries & Creme and Fruit & Creme
    2. Starburst
    3. Lifesaver Gummies
    4. Starburst and Jelly Belly Jelly Beans
    5. Haribo Gummi Bears vs Trolli Gummi Bears
    Name: Starburst GummiBursts
      RATING:
    • 10 SUPERB
    • 9 YUMMY
    • 8 TASTY
    • 7 WORTH IT
    • 6 TEMPTING
    • 5 PLEASANT
    • 4 BENIGN
    • 3 UNAPPEALING
    • 2 APPALLING
    • 1 INEDIBLE
    Brand: Mars
    Place Purchased: samples from Mars
    Price: $.75 retail
    Size: 1.5 ounces
    Calories per ounce: 93
    Categories: Gummi, United States, Mars

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 9:29 am     Comments (45)

    Wednesday, April 2, 2008

    Lifesavers Gummies Sour

    Lifesavers Gummies SoursI see these at the 7-11 all the time. It’s one of those candies that I just don’t buy, thinking one day I’ll run out of things and those will be there for me to review.

    But more recently I was sick. A bad head cold and whatnot. You know how it is. Sometimes I don’t want a delicate chocolate that makes me pay careful attention to nuance. Sometimes I just want the texture burned off my tongue.

    I’m a huge gummi fan, don’t get me wrong. But I’m very happy with the plain old traditional Haribo Bears. Sometimes I enjoy the Japanese gummis, especially when they’re covered in chocolate.

    Opening the bag, it smelled like fruity shampoo.

    The bag holds five flavors: Strawberry, Tangy Cherry, Watermelon, Black Raspberry & Tangerine.

    Those who have been reading here for a while know which one puts me over the moon, Tangerine. (I used to love the single-flavor Tangerine Lifesavers that were once available and can now only be found in the Tropical Mix.)

    Lifesavers Gummies Sours

    They’re soft and pliable gummies, sanded with a tingly sour coating. They’re larger than the old hard Lifesavers, a little larger than a quarter.

    The colors are a little hard to tell apart. The Orange, Red and Light Red all kinda look the same in incandescent lighting (years from now people won’t know what I’m talking about when incandescents are illegal and everyone has CF or LEDs).

    Smelling them didn’t help, but believe me, it’s pretty easy to tell them apart by taste.

    The Tangerine is wonderful. It’s tangy, it’s zesty, it’s fruity and just tastes like I should have some peels lying around when I’m done.

    Tangy Cherry, is well, a light cherry. I don’t like it as much as the regular cherry Lifesavers Gummies, but it’s okay.

    Strawberry is one of those odd flavors. I don’t want my strawberries to be sour. If you gave me sour strawberries I’d probably tell you to take them back to the grocery store and get your money back. These were also okay, but looked an awful lot like the tangerine, so I ate a few more than I wanted to by mistake.

    Watermelon is rather like Strawberry, it should be sweet and fragrant. Sour is wrong. But here I am, and not only is it sour, but it’s also green. It tastes just horrible, but the good news is that my husband thought this was the best flavor and has no problems rummaging through the bag and getting rid of them.

    Black Raspberry is also pretty intense. It has a nice jammy base, with some good tartness and then of course the wonderful floral raspberry flavor.

    These aren’t so sour that they ruin your mouth. Pretty much like Sour Patch Kids, but with a gummi base instead of a jelly one.

    By a strange coincidence I also tried the Lifesaver Gummies after another cold for similar reasons.

    Unlike many other Lifesavers products these days, these are made in the USA.

    Related Candies

    1. Sour Jujyfruits
    2. Sour Patch Extreme
    3. Sour Gummi Bears
    4. Sour Extinguisher
    5. LifeSavers
    6. Lifesaver Gummies
    Name: Lifesavers Gummies Sours
      RATING:
    • 10 SUPERB
    • 9 YUMMY
    • 8 TASTY
    • 7 WORTH IT
    • 6 TEMPTING
    • 5 PLEASANT
    • 4 BENIGN
    • 3 UNAPPEALING
    • 2 APPALLING
    • 1 INEDIBLE
    Brand: Lifesavers (Wrigley's)
    Place Purchased: samples from CandyWarehouse.com
    Price: $1.39 retail
    Size: 7 ounces
    Calories per ounce: 92
    Categories: Gummi, Sour, United States, Wrigley's

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 4:59 am     Comments (16)

    Friday, March 21, 2008

    Easter Novelty Toys (with candy)

    Here are a few combo candy-toy items for Easter baskets and beyond:

    M&Ms Mini

    I thought this little M&Ms mini figure was pretty cute. He’s made of some sort of durable hard plastic, not that cheap thin stuff.

    The little figure is full of mini M&Ms. They’re regular M&Ms, not the Easter pastel version, but I’m okay with that.

    The most vexing thing about this is the little hat that twists/pops off to reveal the candy. It was like a frelling child safety cap without the insane instructions.

    There were a few varieties, including Green, Red and Yellow. I liked the Blue because it felt most like Easter pastels even if he did have some sort of a goofy look on his face. I don’t know if the bunny hats are swappable for other non-holiday novelties.

    It was expensive for the scant amount of candy involved, $1.99 regular price. But a fun grab next week on sale, perhaps.

    Hershey's Lamb with Kisses

    When I was a teenager I had a thing for sheep items. (Well, in college we actually had a sheep living at a house I was renting a room at, but he was more of a lawnmower.)

    My obsession caused me to rewrite passages of Shakespeare with sheep in mind:

    Methought I heard a voice cry ‘Sheep no more!
    Macbeth does murder sheep’, the innocent sheep,
    Sheep that knits up the ravell’d sleeve of care (1)

    I’ve kind of moved on from the sheep thing (though if I ever have one I get to name, he’ll be called Fleance).

    While this little cheap plastic egg with sheep features was only 99 cents, it also only has give Hershey’s Kisses in them. (At least they’re pastel foil.)

    M&Ms Toys with CandyMoving up in price, Candyrific recently expanded their toy/candy line with some M&Ms themed items.

    They fall more in the realm of toys than candy containers and are pretty fun combinations.

    The first is a set of fans. Candyrific came out with a really good candy novelty a couple of years ago, which is the fan that has little LED lights on it and a candy container in the handle. This new version has the M&Ms characters in various colors holding the fan. The central container at the base of the handle holds .7 ounces of regular M&Ms. (There’s supposedly a version of this for Easter, but I got the year-round version as a sample and haven’t seen the pastel ones with bunny ears in stores.)

    The second is a miniature Etch A Sketch that holds a small fun-sized pack of M&Ms.

              M&Ms Fan Toy

    I have to admit that I enjoy these a lot. I don’t care about the candy inside. I wish that they lit up like the other versions do, but I’m guessing the money they spend on those LEDs in this instance goes to M&MS for the licensing of the characters. But at least they have real M&Ms in there.

    They’re well made and even have a real battery compartment that can be opened and replaced for actual lasting play.

    I really could have used a few of these last September during that blackout on Labor Day weekend where my house was over 100 degrees inside.

    The fan blade is made of a soft foam, and no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t hurt myself with it. Maybe if I stuck it in my eye. (Please don’t try that, or if you do, please don’t blame me.)

    M&Ms Etch A Sketch

    The other fun item is this little Etch A Sketch with a couple of M&Ms on there. They come in a few different colors, but they’re pretty much the same. I had an Etch A Sketch as a kid and enjoyed it ... actually got pretty good at drawing on it. This one doesn’t work quite as well, the little stylus draws a very thin line, probably a little too thin on the first pass, so I ended up going over my lines twice.

    M&Ms Etch A SketchIt’s a crazy small amount of candy, but like the fan, it’s pretty easy to put any kind of candy in there and refill it however you like.

    The biggest drawback is trying to clear the Etch A Sketch, which everyone knows involves turning it over and shaking it wildly. With the M&Ms in the little container part it makes a lotta noise and to clear the EAS properly, I broke some of my M&MS.

    There is an easy solution to this of course, just take the lid off (the part that has the EAS on it) and just shake that. Like my problems with getting the hat off of the Easter minis, I’m sure a child would figure this out much quicker than I did.

    The last item is a bit of a re-review of one of my favorite candy novelties so far, an Easter version of the Gummy Lightning Bugs.

    Lightning Bunny Gummy CandyThis version has little gummy rabbits and is called Lightning Bunny Candy by Kandy Kastle. They’re all one flavor, instead of a mix. I was worried when I saw that they’re all red, but it’s cool, they’re strawberry, not cherry.

    For only 99 cents there are 9 little gummis and the cute purple light up tongs.

    The package said that the tongs were redesigned. Actually, it says “New & Improved Tong Included” so they’re better than before and there’s only one. (Tongs, I’m guessing are like scissors and pants and are always plural.)

    The tongs aren’t really improved, if you ask me. They’re just shorter than before, probably easier to grasp for little fingers and they don’t stay on as readily, which probably provides a lot more longevity.

    This is the kind of exploratory toy that I think is good for kids. It makes them slow down and really look at everyday things in a different way.

    Lightning Bunny Gummy CandyI tried them on some other items, they don’t open as widely as they used to, so anything as large as say, a Spearmint Leaf is too big. But small items like jelly beans (awesome!) and chocolate covered coffee beans (boring) are the right size.

    I think adding a little toy in an Easter basket is fun. (I think the best one I ever got was a kite, which me & my brother and sister took out to the field across the street behind the cemetery and promptly got caught in a tree within an hour.)

    The Hershey’s one isn’t the best toy in the world, but the design is nice. The filled M&M is also nice and certainly well built, but doesn’t offer much opportunity for interaction. I can see it being collectible though. The fan & Etch A Sketch are the best of the bunch, but a little pricier for “candy” items at $3.99 retail, but still a good value for a small toy.

    If parents are looking for a way to still have a bit of bounty in the basket, a novelty item that contains a small amount of candy (especially something that can be refilled on a regular basis) is a good compromise. I mean, I wouldn’t have felt cheated if I got one of these as a kid.

    They all get a solid 7 out of 10. The Lightning Bunny was made in China, in all other cases the candy was made in the USA, but the toys were made in China.

    Related Candies

    1. Gummy Fishies
    2. Bug Jar Candy
    3. M&M and Reese’s Pieces Peanut Butter Eggs
    4. Gummi Lightning Bugs
    5. Light Lollipops

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 8:32 pm     CandyReviewEasterHershey'sMarsChocolateGummi CandyNovelty/Toy7-Worth ItChinaUnited StatesRite AidSav-On/CVSComments (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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    • Candy Rant: Stimulants are not Energy

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