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Jelly Candy

Friday, October 29, 2010

Berry Chewy Lemonheads

Berry Chewy LemonheadsFerrara Pan Berry Chewy Lemonhead & Friends are the newest introduction of Lemonheads line. These are the chewy version, they’re kind of like a flavor blasted jelly bean that has a tangy shell.

The Lemonheads line is quite varied now, Ferrara Pan has gone beyond the single flavor boxes (lemon, orange, cherry, grape and green apple) and includes more of these flavored mixes including the Chewy Lemonheads & Friends and last year’s introduction, Tropical Chewy Lemonheads.

The box features anthropomorphic versions of the flavors, Cherry Lemon, Wild Berry, Blue Raspberry, Strawberry and Red Raspberry on stage as if they’re a rock band. Strawberry is a torch singer and Raspberry has drum sticks but no drums.

Berry Chewy Lemonheads

The pieces are attractive, they’re little spheres, slightly larger than garden peas. They’re slightly irregular but boldly colored and uniformly shiny.

Red Raspberry (dark red) has a nice tartness and even a slight dry finish, a mix of floral berry notes with less of the artificial coloring bitterness.

Strawberry (lighter red) is sweet with a light tangy note under the grainy shell. It’s not a very well rounded flavor and has a bit of a bitter note for me because of the artificial colorings.

Blue Raspberry (blue) is very woodsy and strangely chemical at the same time. There’s a floral raspberry flavor but also something kind of like artificial watermelon in there.

Wild Berry (dark purple) has a lot of flavors going on but is mostly a punch flavor, some cherry and raspberry is evident and maybe a little blueberry note in there. Not at all sour.

Cherry Lemon (medium red) was actually really good but strange. The lemon had a strong zest component but not much tang. The cherry was sweet and almost floral. It was definitely not the ordinary sour cherry flavored candy (and nothing like the Cherry Chewy Lemonhead).

The good thing about the mix is that it’s easy to just eat them without looking at the colors because the flavors aren’t that distinctive and never clash. The bad thing is that the flavors aren’t that distinctive and are so mild to the point that all of the best things about Lemonheads (the intense flavor difference between the shell and center) are lost.

I’ll stick to the classic, hard centered Lemonheads, but the Chewy Lemonhead & Friends are pretty good too, so good that I’m giving them out for Halloween as the non-chocolate option.

They’re not vegetarian/vegan because of the presence of confectioners glaze. They’re also manufactured in a facility that also processes peanuts, tree nuts, milk and soy. No mention of wheat. Not Kosher.

Related Candies

  1. Lemonhead & Friends Jelly Beans
  2. Tropical Chewy Lemonhead & Friends
  3. Mike and Ike Berry Blast
  4. Chewy Lemonheads & Atomic Fireballs
  5. Mentos Berry Mix
  6. The Lemonhead & Fruit Heads


Name: Berry Chewy Lemonhead & Friends
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Ferrara Pan
Place Purchased: Dollar Tree (Harbor City)
Price: $1.00
Size: 6.0 ounces
Calories per ounce: 106
Categories: Candy, Ferrara Pan, Jelly Candy, 6-Tempting, United States, Dollar Tree

POSTED BY Cybele AT 12:41 pm     CandyFerrara PanJelly Candy6-TemptingUnited StatesDollar TreeComments (2)

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Goody Good Stuff Koala Gummy Bears

Goody Good Stuff - Koala Gummy BearsAfter my review of Goody Good Stuff Sweet & Sour Mix & Match the company offered to send me updated samples. The Mix & Match I had was from an early batch of samples and didn’t have the final packaging. The hook with Good Good Stuff’s candy is that it’s free of many allergens and made with all natural colors and flavors. But the most interesting part of all this is that their “gummies” are completely vegetarian because they don’t use gelatin.

Instead Goody Good Stuff uses a combination of gelling agents (polysaccharides) such as carrageenan (from seaweed) and gellan (from bacteria). Traditional (true) gummis use gelatin, which is a protein. Though they all look the same in the finished product, the texture and behavior can be quite different. 

Goody Good Stuff Bears

So, the Goody Good Stuff Koala Gummy Bears are jelly candies. That’s cool. But wait a second, do they look like Koalas to you? Not to me. The ears are too small, the nose is all wrong. Most importantly these “koalas” have belly buttons. Koalas are marsupials (non-placental) and do not have belly buttons while bears are mammals and do have navels. They look like standard generic ursids.

But that doesn’t mean that this can’t be good candy. (Lots of candies are named incongruously, starting with Circus Peanuts.)

Goody Good Stuff Bears

The Goody Good Stuff Bears come in five flavors/colors. The main difference between these and a traditional gummi is the texture. The Goody Good Stuff Bears are soft and chewy, but they’re more on the jelly side than the gelatinous side. When you take a regular gummi bear and pull it apart, eventually it will break - pull it long enough and it will simply snap, usually leaving clean edges and right angles. Pull a Goody Good Stuff Bear apart and it will stretch and stretch until it’s tiny little, sticky jelly strands. In the mouth the chew is similar until the dissolve comes, the Goody Good Stuff Bears dissolve into a bit of a sticky puddle. They remind me a little like okra mucilage ... in a good way.

The flavors are perfectly gummi-like:

Orange - good mix of zest and juicy tartness.

Strawberry - sweet and fragrant with a mild jammy flavor and light tangy note.

Lemon - strong lemon peel and oil flavors without as much of a tart bite as others.

Green Apple - very mild with notes of both apple juice and that unnatural “green apple” flavor. Bland but pleasant.

Pineapple - bold and floral with a little an authentic pineapple sizzle behind it all.

Though the flavors are not as intense as some other gummis, such as the ones from Japan, these are nicely flavored. The candies are well made, even though they’re all naturally flavored and colored, they’re vibrant looking and each tastes distinctive. They’re mainstream looking and tasting, I don’t think kids would know the difference.

The candies are made without any animal products (no gelatin, no insect-derived colors), however they do use a touch of beeswax so they can’t be considered vegan. They’re nut free, dairy free, gluten free, soy free and peanut free. They’re not easy to find in the US yet, but I expect that to change because of this important vegetarian distinction.

Related Candies

  1. Goody Good Stuff Sour Mix & Match
  2. Surf Sweets Gummi Swirls
  3. Brach’s Gummi+Plus & Tropical Gummis
  4. Katjes Tropical Gummis & Yogurt Gums
  5. Organic Surf Sweets


Name: Koala Gummy Bears
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Goody Good Stuff
Place Purchased: samples from Goody Good Stuff
Price: $2.29 retail
Size: 3.5 ounces
Calories per ounce: 101
Categories: All Natural, Candy, Jelly Candy, 7-Worth It, Austria

POSTED BY Cybele AT 2:11 pm     All NaturalCandyGoody Good StuffJelly Candy7-Worth ItUnited KingdomComments (5)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Hello Kitty Pineapple Marshmallows

Hello Kitty Pineapple MarshmallowThe pineapple is a symbol of hospitality. Back in the early days of commercial cultivation in the eighteenth century they were extremely expensive, so when a host provided pineapple as part of a meal, guests were honored. Eventually the images of pineapples were also used in decorating, probably because of the tastiness of the fruit as well as the fun shape and symmetry. I mention this because of the charming image on the Hello Kitty Tropical Pineapple Marshmallow is of the white cat holding a pineapple, dressed in a sharp polka dotted blue dress and sporting a blue hibiscus flower at her ear.

Japan does marvelous things with marshmallow, I feel like they’re an extension of their gummi culture (after all, most of the ingredients are the same). Part of it, I think, is that marshmallows are formulated & marketed for people of all ages. Hello Kitty is obviously aimed at tweens and folks who are young at heart. But other varieties of marshmallows go for anime fans and there are even “beauty marshmallows” in Japan that purport to have rejuvenating collagen in them.

Hello Kitty Pineapple Marshmallows

The marshmallows are light and about 1.25 inches around. They have little pinch points on the ends so they remind me of little sausages of balloons. The outside is soft and lightly powdery (corn starch).

The smell sweet and lightly floral, like a ripe pineapple in the store. The marshmallow texture is soft and latexy with a light bounce.

Biting into them I know that the center was going to have a little jelly reservoir. It was still surprising and ultimately nice. The marshmallow itself is sweet and has that pineapple floral thing going on, but the jam center definitely gave it some pop. The goo was a bit like the pineapple sauce on an ice cream sundae. It was sweet and tangy and had little bits of real pineapple in it.

After popping a few of them, I wondered what they were like toasted.

Hello Kitty Pineapple Marshmallow

The aroma was amazing, I like toasted marshmallows, but this had an added flowery note that really smelled delicious. The outside toasted well, though the jam center didn’t get quite as molten gooey as I hoped. The toasting seemed to make it all a bit sweeter than it was at room temperature. They might make an excellent addition to a S’more - though the Strawberry version is probably a bit better flavor-wise.

As far as marshmallows go, I prefer them either covered in chocolate and used as an element in a larger candy (Scotchmallows) but my second choice is flavored. The jam center gives some texture variation and reminds me of a Westernized mochi. For someone who’s watching their weight or wants to give a small treat to a kid, marshmallows fit the bill - they’re low in calories plus there’s a lot of air in there. So you could eat the whole bag and it’s only 300 calories. (The other plus is there are no artificial colors in this version - though they do use artificial flavors but mostly real pineapple.) The whole Hello Kitty thing is really just about the packaging, but in this case I think the choice of licensing was at least with a quality product. I picked these up at a market in Little Tokyo, but I’ve seen the Strawberry ones at Cost Plus World Market.

Related Candies

  1. Kasugai Pineapple Gummy
  2. Katjes Saure Ananas (Sour Pineapple)
  3. Mentos - Pine Fresh (Pineapple)
  4. GudFud Stuffed Marshmallows
  5. Candy Source: Aji Ichiban
  6. See’s Scotchmallow


Name: Tropical Pineapple Marshmallows
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Eiwa
Place Purchased: Little Tokyo Market (Little Tokyo)
Price: $1.59
Size: 3.1 ounces
Calories per ounce: 94
Categories: Candy, Marshmallow, 6-Tempting, Japan

POSTED BY Cybele AT 4:11 pm     CandyJelly CandyMarshmallow6-TemptingJapanComments (6)

Monday, July 19, 2010

Goody Good Stuff Sour Mix & Match

Goody Good Stuff Sour Mix & MatchIt’s not hard to find candy that’s colorful and flavorful, but what makes it harder is when you want it to be all natural, free of the major allergens (wheat, soy, dairy, nuts) and vegan. So Goody Good Stuff is here to fill that hole in your life.

I picked up this sample of their Sour Mix & Match at some trade show and have been hanging onto it until it hit the stores.

Now here’s the thing, their marketing says that these are vegan gummis. Instead of gelatin, which is made from pigs, cows or fish, Goody Good Stuff is using a new gelling agent called gellan. (I first noticed the ingredient in Halal Mentos.) Gellan is made from bacteria, not vertebrates. It sounds like a great idea, however in practice gellan is closer to agar (that jelly stuff in petri dishes) that’s made from seaweed than gelatin. Gelatin is a protein; gellan is polysaccharide. They’re simply different, they do different things and behave in different ways.

At first glance jelly candies and gummis look very similar, but they don’t behave the same way. Gummis tear sharply - you can pull a gummi apart and it will make flat edges where it breaks. Pull apart a jelly and it just, well, pulls. It doesn’t bounce, though sometimes it might jiggle nicely. The great thing is that both carry fruit flavors really well, they create a smooth texture and often a glass-like appearance.

Goody Good Stuff

So with all that chemistry aside, I’ve got a handful of candy to taste. There are quite a few different pieces in this mix and match, but I could only review three versions because I needed at least three tries to taste the flavors. They’re like little bulbous, rounded planks - about an inch and a half long.

Without any clue as to what the flavors are supposed to be, and that these are British (which is always a little different in the fruity flavors), I can only describe what I’ve got.

Green & Peach - it tastes like peach. Both ends taste the same as far as I’m concerned, but there’s a weird “ketchup” note to it that I find a little disturbing. The peach is tangy and light with a good sour bite at the start. The jelly center is smooth and doesn’t stick too much.

Red & Yellow - tastes like strawberry lemonade. The lemon is strong, sour and zesty with a slight floral note I attribute to strawberry.

Orange & Blue - is shocking. The blue is amazing for a natural product. It’s zesty and well rounded and tastes mostly like grapefruit but maybe with some pineapple thrown in.

For those who were curious, here’s what’s inside:

Ingredients: Glucose syrup; sugar; modified corn starch; Acidulant:  malic acid, citric acid; Gelling agent: gellan; flavours;  Acidity regulator: trisodium citrate; concentrates of fruits and plants (orange, elderberry, lemon, aronia, black currant, apple, kiwi, spinach, nettle); caramelized sugar syrup; elderberry extract, fructose, invert sugar syrup.

imageThese look and taste like there is no compromise. The colors are intense and I’d say kind of unnatural looking. The shape is fun and easy to grasp. They’re not messy at all, the sugar crust stays on so well there were scarcely ten grains in the bottom of the bag of these I had. They’re sour, but not that searing kind that’s likely to create blisters on the tongue after a serving.

I feel like kids or grown ups who have had true gummis before may be disappointed with the texture based on my expectations.

They also make a few other products that I’m quite eager to try: Strawberry and Cream, Cola Breeze, Sour Fruit Salad, Tropical Fruit, Koala Gummy Bears while the ones that I found less interesting were Summer Peaches and Cheery Cherries. These should be available in Stop & Shop on the East Coast and Booths and ASDA in the UK.

Related Candies

  1. Sweet Earth Chocolates
  2. Surf Sweets Gummi Swirls
  3. Organic Zootons
  4. Sjaak’s Vegan Chocolate Assortment
  5. St. Claire’s Organic Mints & Tarts
  6. Organic Surf Sweets


Name: Sour Mix & Match
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Goody Good Stuff
Place Purchased: sample from ExpoWest
Price: unknown
Size: 3.5 ounces
Calories per ounce: 98
Categories: All Natural, Candy, Jelly Candy, Kosher, Sour, 7-Worth It, United Kingdom

POSTED BY Cybele AT 8:31 am     All NaturalCandyGoody Good StuffJelly CandyKosherSour7-Worth ItUnited KingdomComments (2)

Friday, July 16, 2010

Jelly Belly Cocktail Classics

One of the most popular new items at the Sweets & Snacks Expo was Jelly Belly’s Cocktail Classics mix.

Jelly Belly Cocktail Classics

The five flavor mix reminds us that It’s five o’clock somewhere (and has trademarked the phrase, to boot). They’re based on popular fruity cocktails: Pina Colada, Strawberry Daiquiri, Mojito, Peach Bellini and Pomegranate Cosmo. They’re non-alcoholic and available in a variety of packages like 9 ounce bags, 1 pound tubs (best value) and this gift box that actually guarantees that you get the same amount of each flavor.

Jelly Belly Cocktail Classics

Pina Colada - a Pina Colada is a fruity tropical blend of strained pineapple and coconut cream along with rum.
The jelly bean version is a little bit of a milky yellow color. The flavor at first is a tart but not too tangy pineapple, nicely floral and authentic. Then as the center takes over a creamy coconut flavor comes to the front. A little more coconut than I would have liked, especially because it became so sweet.

Strawberry Daiquiri - a plain daiquiri is rum, lime juice and sugar (served over ice or chilled). Later it became a slush drink or frozen daiquiri. A strawberry version varies and can be the frozen variety with just a few strawberries thrown into the blender but sometimes strawberry liqueur is added.
The jelly bean version looked like a smoothie, a soft medium pink with speckles. The flavor is mellow, more like jam than fresh strawberries. There’s a hint of tartness from time to time, but no real note of the lime or rum flavors.

Mojito - this drink has become very popular lately, it’s a mix of white rum, sugar (preferably cane juice), lime, seltzer water and muddled mint.
The jelly bean version is light green, slightly transparent and speckled with darker green. It’s kind of chaotic, which matches the drink itself. The spearmint and lime notes come at once, so it’s minty and tangy and zesty all at once. The second wave of flavor from the jelly center has a little bit of a rum note to it. This one succeeded best in capturing the combination of notes that an actual drink has. But Mojitos aren’t really a favorite of mine.

Peach Bellini - is a mix of peach puree and sparkling wine.
The jelly bean version is orange. I’ve never actually had a real bellini, so I can’t comment on this candy simulation in that respect. The peach notes are quite strong, but pretty authentic (having eaten half a peach this morning). The tangy, sweet and fuzz blend well. There’s a white wine note in there, kind of like a white grape juice with a weirdly realistic alcohol bite to it.

Jelly Belly Cocktail ClassicsPomegranate Cosmo - Cosmo is short for the original name of the Cosmopolitan cocktail. It’s a mix of vodka, Triple Sec (orange), cranberry juice and lime juice. I’m guessing the pomegranate version just subs out the cranberry juice for pomegranate juice.
The jelly bean version is a pale garnet red. The flavors aren’t quite distinct. I felt like it was simply a nice raspberry jelly bean, I wasn’t getting the orange & lime notes, just what they were pushing as pomegranate flavor.

As with most Jelly Belly flavor mixes, I love the quality of the jelly beans themselves. In this instance there were really only two I cared to eat, the Pomegranate Cosmo and Pina Colada, but given dozen of other great flavors that Jelly Belly makes, I’d still stick with the citrus mix. For me, it wouldn’t make sense to buy this mix. As a theme it’s fun and certainly pretty. The value for the box shown here is pretty bad - it’s 4.5 ounces and costs $5.99 on the Jelly Belly website - that’s over $21 a pound. So if you’ve got to have these, get them in the tub or bulk.

Related Candies

  1. Jelly Belly Sunkist Citrus Mix
  2. Cholive
  3. Jelly Belly: Lollibeans
  4. Jelly Belly Soda Pop Shoppe
  5. MarieBelle Chocolates
  6. Jelly Belly - Full Line


Name: Cocktail Classics Jelly Belly
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Jelly Belly
Place Purchased: samples from Jelly Belly
Price: $5.99 retail
Size: 4.25 ounces
Calories per ounce: 99
Categories: Candy, Jelly Belly, Jelly Candy, Kosher, 7-Worth It, United States

POSTED BY Cybele AT 10:21 am     CandyReviewJelly BellyJelly CandyKosher7-Worth ItUnited StatesComments (10)

Friday, June 11, 2010

Nory Rahat Locum

Lokum MasticaSometimes I look at photos of the markets in Turkey, with stalls piled high with different kinds of lokum (also called Turkish Delight, locum or lokumi - I’ll just call it locum for this review) and wish that places like that existed a bit closer to me.

But it turns out that they do. No, they don’t sell in big open air markets. Los Angeles has its own classic locumist (is that a word?) called Nory Rahat Locum. In 1964 a Romanian-Armenian confectioner named Norayr settled in Hollywood and started making classic locum using his family’s 100 year-old recipes. Norayr retired and sold the company to the Jibilians in 1979, who in turn sold it to Sahakians last year when they retired.

They’re dedicated to making a local product, right down to the citrus flavors and nuts in it, the boxes for packaging. The only non-American content is the mastic used for the Mastica flavor, imported from one of the few sources, the island of Chios in Greece.

DSC_4618rb

Locum is made from simple ingredients: sugar, water, starch and perhaps corn syrup and citric acid, some nuts, flavorings and colors. It’s rather like a dairy-free pudding. The mixture is boiled until the starch combines completely with the liquid and sugars to form a silky smooth paste. Then it’s poured and cooled in a shallow baking pan until it’s ready to be cut into squares. The traditional method of storing and serving involves tossing the cubes with a mixture of confectioners sugar and corn starch to keep them from sticking.

Nory Rahat Locum makes a huge variety of Locum products. They have the traditional rosewater, mint and orange as well as the nut versions including pistachio, almond, hazelnut and walnut. But what caught my eye were flavors like Bergamot, Licorice and Mastica.

Lokum MasticaI don’t know much about Mastic (or in this case Mastica).  I looked it up of course, since the whole point of Candy Blog is to explore new flavors. I know that it’s a natural plant resin that can be chewed like chicle. You might even recognize it as the root of the word masticate (to chew). The mastic tree (Pistacia lentiscus) is part of the Cashew family and is closely related to the Pistachio. I’ve had mastic gum before, I picked up some samples at some trade show along the way and it like the name implies, it’s like chewing on tree sap when you get it in its pure form. (Still stimulating and fresh-tasting, if a little hard to chew after a while.)

The idea of using mastic as a flavoring was new to me, even though the internet tells me it’s a classic confectionery flavor in the Middle East and Mediterranean.

The pieces appear uncolored, just a pale yellow. The texture is smooth and moist, with an easy bite.

The flavor is lightly woodsy, a little earthy. It reminds me of ginseng gum. A cross between tongue depressors, rosemary with a slight whiff of golden beets. At times it reminded me of office supplies, like Scotch tape, envelope adhesive and laser printers. There’s a fresh, slightly jasmine aftertaste. I know this all sounds unappealing but it’s soothing and comforting, like the smell of rain.

8 out of 10

DSC_4612rbWhile I was most excited by the exotics, there were more mainstream flavors.

Mint was bright green on the inside, like a traffic signal. This was some powerful peppermint. Probably too minty for me. It was smooth and had an excellent texture, the mint was so strong that it had a bit of a warm sensation for me but it did cut the sweetness. 7 out of 10

Rose - flowery and a bit like honey but without the over soapy notes that florals sometimes have. 7 out of 10

Orange - instead of orange blossom or orange zest this was like a whole orange flavor. A little like sweet, low acid orange juice without the pulp. It wasn’t my favorite in the bunch, I would have liked more zest in it. However, I can see this being a very accessible and easy flavor for those new to lokum to enjoy. It’s very similar to Orange Slice jellies, though so much smoother since there’s no granulated sugar crust. 7 out of 10

DSC_4613rbPomegranate was deeply colored and had a scent that was a combination of rose and raspberry. The floral and berry notes were good, but I think this one suffered with an overuse of food coloring, which gave it a weird metallic/bitter tone that was inconsistent with a desirable flavor. 7 out of 10

Licorice (not shown) was a polite dose of anise, like those Anise Bears except so much smoother and a little warmer, like there was a touch of ginger in it. Again, the food coloring gave it a weird taste as well. At this point I should note that part way through my tastings of the locum I emailed with Armand Sahakian and noted the difficulties I had with the heavily colored flavors. He confirmed that he was planning to take the products all natural by the end of the year, so this will not be an issue in the future. 7 out of 10

Bergamot was uncolored, which really helped the flavors to take the center stage. It wasn’t as strongly flavored as I thought I could tolerate, just a light kiss of what most people know as the essential flavor of Earl Grey tea. Not too sweet, soft and smooth. 8 out of 10

Lokum Pistachio (Bergamot)

The same locum also came in a nutty version: Bergamot and Pistachio. The floral and grassy notes of the soft and chewy pistachios go so well with the light herbal and citrus flavors of bergamot. If it weren’t so messy I’d probably eat the whole box.

The other nutty varieties were supplied to me in the more mainstream combinations. Hazelnut was in a vanilla locum as was Almond. They were mild and pleasant, sweet but then again the lack of the addition flavor really let the nutty notes come through. The hazelnut was really nice because the roasted flavors go so well with vanilla. It got me to wondering how this variety would do with a few cacao nibs tossed in.

8 out of 10

Part of me wanted more nuts, but that’s where it’s lucky that Nory has another line called Supreme Squares.

Nory Rahat Locum - Supreme Squares - Pistachio

Supreme Squares (they also come in bars) are a thicker version of locum with far more nuts. I tried two versions, one is the Pistachio and Rose shown above, which had a light floral note with the sweet and grassy crunch of the pistachios. The chew of the locum was fun, not quite a caramel, but still a bit on the stringy side but ultimately smooth. I ate them all. Just to let you know, I had eight pounds of locum (yes, 8 full boxes) that I’d been eating over the past two months, this was the only box that I finished all by myself.

Nory Rahat Locum - Supreme Squares - AlmondThe second version I tried was the Almond which has a vanilla base, like the locum I tried. It reminded me a bit of a translucent jelly version of Nougat de Montelimar. In fact it would benefit from a little dash of honey. The vanilla gave it a sweeter taste but the super crunchy nuts balanced it out. I definitely preferred it to the standard, less-nutty variety.

The ratings for the nutty Locum and the Supreme Squares are a solid 8 out of 10.

Armand Sahakian has done a great job of updating their product website and doing more outreach in social media (facebook and twitter), it’s fun to see a candy with such a long heritage stay current. He tells me that the packages will also be updated as well. The boxes that I got all looked the same with simple stickers denoting what flavor was inside, the new ones will be specific to the contents.

The only issue I actually have with lokum in general is how messy it is. It’s a sitting down candy, not an on-the-run candy. It’s messy, though thankfully already portioned. The Brits have a great idea there with dipping it in chocolate, but that just adds another flavor to it. Also, in the case of Nory, the package sizes are just too big for me. I don’t want a pound. I have a short attention span for candy (even in my pre-blogging days). I might want 8 ounces, but not a whole pound. I might like even smaller - like 4 ounces or “bar format” that would just be a little tray with 2 ounces. The Supreme Squares are apparently available that way.

Nory has mostly California distribution (via Indo-European Foods and Kradjian Importing Co), though I believe it’s also available online. Markets that carry Turkish, Armenian, Greek and Persian foods are most likely to have them.

Related Candies

  1. Fard’s Persian Pistachio Nougat
  2. Loukoumi Artisan Confections
  3. Nougat de Montelimar
  4. Halvah and Turkish Delight
  5. Candy Essay: Turkish Delight
  6. Turkish Delight


Name: Nory Rahat Locum
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Nory Candy and Pastry
Place Purchased: samples from Nory
Price: retail $6.50
Size: 16 ounces
Calories per ounce: 102
Categories: Candy, Jelly Candy, Nuts, 7-Worth It, 8-Tasty, United States

POSTED BY Cybele AT 1:30 pm     CandyJelly CandyNuts7-Worth It8-TastyUnited StatesComments (6)

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

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
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
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 StatesComments (6)

Monday, May 24, 2010

Jelly Belly Fruit Snacks

Jelly Belly Fruit SnacksJelly Belly Fruit Snacks are smooth fruity jelly chews in six flavors and made with seven fruit juices.

The package is simple and appealing, focusing on the fruits and the fruit shapes of the candy inside. They’re entering a very crowded markeplace, there are dozens of fruit snacks already on the market, many with licensing tie ins with cartoon characters.

They come in: Berry, Cherry, Orange, Lemon, Strawberry and Apple. Each flavor is a different color and shaped for the fruit it’s emulating.

Jelly Belly Fruit Snacks
(Sorry about the photo, I’m missing the apple one from that array - it looks strikingly like the strawberry, just no little seed bumps.)

Overall the texture is closer to gum drops (like Dots) than jelly beans or gummis. It’s an easy and smooth chew, but still a little sticky.

Cherry - is quite mild, a light woodsy black cherry with a tartness to it, but nothing terribly overwhelming.

Lemon - is vivid - a good blend of tangy and zesty.

Strawberry - is floral and a little bit on the fruit punch side of things. It’s mostly jammy sweet without much sourness.

Orange - is a bit ordinary but hard to be disappointed with a decent mix of juicy and zesty.

Berry - was hard to find in my mixes that I got. Two of the single serve bags that I opened didn’t have them at all. It’s a good raspberry flavor, but a little on the non-descript side.

Apple - is fresh and authentic, a lot like apple cider and nothing like “green apple.”

The caloric density on these is very low. As an all-sugar candy there’s no fat in it but also not much in the way of nutrition… no protein, no fiber. But there is a good dose of vitamin C and of course the fact that you can eat a handful for less than 100 calories can help a lot with a craving.

They’re pretty late to a crowded market where there are a lot of choices. The price point is a bit higher than I think many folks are willing to spend but it’s the kind of candy I might pick in a vending machine or if it came in theater boxes - the idea of a naturally flavored and colored version of Dots or Jujyfruits is probably appealing to parents as well.

Related Candies

  1. Lemonhead Fruit Snacks
  2. The Simpsons Fruit Snacks
  3. Dogs versus Cats (fruit snacks that is)
  4. Sunkist Fruit Gems
  5. Fruit Parfaits


Name: Fruit Snacks
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Jelly Belly
Place Purchased: samples from Jelly Belly
Price: $2.50
Size: 2.5 ounces
Calories per ounce: 92
Categories: All Natural, Candy, Jelly Belly, Chews, Jelly Candy, 7-Worth It, United States

POSTED BY Cybele AT 4:20 pm     CandyJelly BellyJelly CandyKosher7-Worth ItUnited StatesComments (3)

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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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