Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Sometimes I have stuff that I just do a short review on. In this instance, I just want to tell you about some things that I bought and might have eaten. But I’m not going to review them. You might enjoy the photos and of course feel free to add your review in the comments.
What is it? Haribo Cola Wheels
Why I Bought Them: They were pretty and I love cola as a flavor.
Why I’m Not Going to Review Them: I lost them. I know they’ll turn up, but they were just in a paper bag, so they can’t possibly be fresh now. (But I’ll probably eat them anyway.)
What is it? Bourbon Bit Assortment (Banana)
Why I Bought Them: It’s Japanese. A friend at work gave me a bag of them. In the bag are three varieties, I think Vanilla Creme, Chocolate Creme and Banana Creme. But the wrappers are in Japanese, so I’m only guessing.
Why I’m Not Going to Review Them: I haven’t been able to find them in stores and ended up sharing most of them with co-workers. Still, they’re nice little wafer layers with creme covered in decent chocolate.
What is it? Mehlenbacher’s Taffy Assortment
Why I Bought Them: Back in the spring I went to Paso Robles for the weekend. We stopped at the farmers market in the square and I saw a stand for this taffy. It was so cute and I’d actually read about them online before my trip. So I picked up this big assortment. The pieces are huge, like cigars. The flavors also sounded great, especially Root Beer.
Why I’m Not Going to Review Them: I lost them for a while. I have this horrible habit of tucking candy away in boxes or coolers to keep it fresh, but then forgetting that I had it or where I put it. And now it’s too late to eat them for review.
What is it? Marshmallow Bunny
Why I Bought Them: it was cute and I wanted to take its picture.
Why I’m Not Going to Review Them: It’s just another pink Easter marshmallow bunny made in China. There’s not much else to say any longer about those.
What is it? Hammond’s Peanut Butter Sticks
Why I Bought Them: I got this as a sample at the Fancy Food Show back in January. I’ve been looking for them in stores and online but haven’t seen them.
Why I’m Not Going to Review Them: It was dang tasty, but again, it’s hard for me to review stuff that isn’t easily acquired. But I’ll keep my eyes out, if I see them again, I’ll buy them and review them for real.
What is it? Raleigh Bar from Xocolatl
Why I Bought Them: This was a sample from the Fancy Food Show. The bar is “a layer of honey pecan chocolate nougat, topped with our signature salted caramel.” I thought it was nice, but didn’t really get a great feel for it (it’s kind of tiny, like a large bonbon).
Why I’m Not Going to Review Them: I have this thing about bacon. I know there’s no bacon in this, though there’s a version that has bacon in it. I don’t like bacon. I don’t like pork, I don’t even like meat. I really don’t like it to even be adjacent to my chocolate. It’s my own baggage and it’s not fair, but that’s why I haven’t reviewed a lot of Vosges lately and some other candies that I’m sure are great ... simply their proximity to bacon.
What is it? Boyer Peanut Butter Pretzel - it’s a pretzel dipped in peanut butter and then coated in milk chocolate.
Why I Bought Them: I picked these up as a sample. I photographed them.
Why I’m Not Going to Review Them: I can’t find them for sale anywhere. Or at least that was the problem. I ate them but didn’t make notes well enough for review. Then I saw them for sale while I was in Ohio.
What is it? Madame Chocolat crispy rice squares dipped in chocolate
Why I Bought Them: I went to Beverly Hills late last year to visit Teuscher. Since I’d already paid for parking I took a stroll around for other chocolate opportunities. I went into a little shop called Madame Chocolat and picked up a few items. It was expensive stuff (their fine boxed chocolates) but I also got this crazy little item - it’s not like a marshmallow rice crispy treat. It’s more like sugar sweetened cereal, held together with that crispy syrup coating. Then the bottoms are dipped in very, very good dark chocolate.
Why I’m Not Going to Review Them: I dunno.
What is it? Ethel’s Chocolate Beer Chocolates & Caramels
Why I Bought Them: Last year I also went to Las Vegas to the NACS (National Association of Convenience Stores) Show. Instead of seeing Bill Clinton give his keynote address I went to the Ethel’s Chocolates factory and botanical gardens. I bought a few things there (two different assortments plus some hot chocolate) but never got around to reviewing it.
Why I’m Not Going to Review Them: I thought they were good, and the botanical gardens are charming. But I just couldn’t figure out what else to say about it.
What is it? Xocai Power Squares
Why I Bought Them: I picked up two little squares as a sample last year at the Los Angeles Chocolate Salon (held in Pasadena). I’ve been curious about the chocolate brand for a while now, but they’re like Avon, you have to buy them from someone who sells the stuff and they only seem to sell huge quantities. I just wanted to try it.
Why I’m Not Going to Review Them: I don’t like to review stuff that’s not available for retail. (This is the same reason I don’t cover the Dove Chocolate Discoveries stuff.) I’ve also been turned off by the extreme marketing I’ve seen - especially a lot of email I got early on and comments I considered spam on this site. I took that one bite, but I can’t say that it impressed me enough to eat the rest of it or open the second one. But I couldn’t muster much of a review otherwise.
What is it? North Island Caramels - Strawberry, Guarana & Roast Corn
Why I Bought Them: How could I not buy them? Look at those fabulous packages! I actually ordered them online from AsianFoodGrocer.com
Why I’m Not Going to Review Them: Aside from the packaging, I didn’t have much to say about them. They’re milky chews, not quite caramels. The flavors were good, I especially liked the guarana, which tasted like a cross between cola and bubble gum. But I took a lot of pictures of them, so it seems like a waste to not share them.
Friday, July 30, 2010
Every once in a while at Whole Foods they have interesting bulk chocolate, usually by the fine cheeses. One of the items they were actually sampling (this was about two years ago) were Belgian Chocolate Marbles. They were milk, dark and white chocolate swirled pearls. Well, flash forward a few years and I was at the Fancy Food Show where I finally found out who makes them: Callebaut.
Callebaut recently started moving into selling directly to consumers, previously they did most of their products for other confectioners or as ingredients. So maybe these will show up in stores. They’re fun little nuggets, pretty and made from good quality chocolate - real cocoa butter in the white chocolate and a strong dairy flavor.
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Jelly Belly Confections makes a classic licorice bridge mix that has jelly beans, buttons, mellocremes and pastels. Personally, the pastels (candy coated licorice nibs) are my favorite. But I found this abridged mix that just has jelly beans, licorice bears and buttons at the Dollar General, certainly cheaper but missing the fun stuff.
Still, I love the look of the buttons.
Monday, July 26, 2010
Melville’s Candy has always made stunning molded lollipops, they even have a new line with all natural ingredients. The flavors are more subtle, but then I feel like it’s more like the classic barley sugar pop than an intensely flavored hard candy pop.
Saturday, July 24, 2010
Following on yesterday’s Lucky Stars, this Super Mario mushroom tin with mushroom shaped candies is also made by Boston America Corp.
Thursday, July 22, 2010
There are so many things to love about this. Let’s start with the package. The tin is adorable and most of all, function. The top slides open a little or a lot to dispense chocolate covered cacao nibs.
So it’s a tin of nibs? What’s so special about that these days? These are single origin criollo nibs from the Ocumare Valley (my favorite).
I picked up this sample earlier this year at ExpoWest (a natural products show). Now they just need to get them in stores.
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Bottlecaps are underrated. Just look at them, soda pop flavored pressed dextrose candies shaped like bottle caps! What would be more fun or better for sharing?
Cherry, Cola, Grape, Root Beer and Orange. (In an ideal world there would also be a Squirt version, but I guess others will complain that Dr. Pepper & Sprite are missing.)
Sunday, July 18, 2010
I liked these Black Sugar hard candies from Japan because they were so nicely made. They had a deep color of amber and a striated crystal, almost like Tiger’s Eye. The taste was a little weird though, they were a combination of Black Sugar (like molasses) and vinegar. Probably good for a sore throat, but a little too savory for me.
Meticulously photographed and documented reviews of candy from around the world. And the occasional other sweet adventures. Open your mouth, expand your mind.