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Thursday, May 29, 2014

Eat with Your Eyes: Polly

Sockerbit, the Swedish candy shop in New York City, finally opened a West Coast store ... and it’s walking distance from my office.

Sockerbit - Polly

The past couple of times I’ve been over there, I’ve picked up a scoop of Polly. They’re little nougat nuggets dipped in chocolate. They’re cute, kind of like Milk Duds in the consistency of the chew but with a rum note to them. Here’s my original review of selections I picked up in the New York City store.

There’s a world of candy out there ... what are you eating this summer?

POSTED BY Cybele AT 12:44 pm     CandySwedenHighlightShoppingComments (5)

Monday, March 17, 2014

Candy Made to Taste Like Cake

There are always flavor trends. Tropical fruits, pumpkin pie spice, hot pepper ... much of it is a pendulum that swings from novelty to the familiar in unfamiliar settings. One of the new flavor trends that has been pointed out by food industry writers is cake.

Cake Candy

Cake itself isn’t a flavor, it’s just an item you can make with some batter and an oven. There are a few different versions of the cake as candy flavors. The popular varieties are Red Velvet Cake, Birthday Cake and Carrot Cake. I gathered together a few that I’ve picked up in the past few weeks out of curiosity, then I thought maybe I should go through my archives and see how far back this goes and how successful this is as a flavor.

Red Velvet Cake has never been one of my favorites, so making a successful candy adaptation will probably always be lost on me.

Russell Stover Red Velvet Santa M&Ms Milk Chocolate Red Velvet Nutffles Red Velvet Truffle Godiva Red Velvet Cake Truffle

Birthday Cake, White Cake or Party Cake is another subset of the flavor, it’s usually yellow cake with some sort of vanilla frosting.

Godiva Birthday Cake Truffle Birthday Cake M&Ms Peeps Party Cake DSC_5276rb Cupcake Bites

Carrot Cake and Spice Cake are by far the most interesting of the lot, because they combine a series of flavors, both the lightly spiced cake with carrot added for texture and moistness then add in the tang of a cream cheese frosting. Mars has reissued their Carrot Cake M&Ms at Walmart again this year.

Russell Stover Carrot Cake Egg Brach's Carrot Cake Candy Corn Amella Carrot Cake Caramels Naked Chocolate Pumpkin Spice Malt Balls

So this week I’ll review: Peeps Party Cake, Brach’s Carrot Cake Candy Corn, Russell Stover’s Carrot Cake, Wedding Cake and Birthday Cake Eggs. If there are others you’ve seen in stores, let me know so I can track them down Stay tuned.

Related Candies

  1. R.M. Palmer Cake Batter Cup
  2. Birthday Cake M&Ms
  3. M&Ms Milk Chocolate Red Velvet
  4. Russell Stover Red Velvet Santa
  5. See’s Holiday Pie Truffles
  6. Godiva Cake Truffles
  7. Cupcake Bites

POSTED BY Cybele AT 10:30 am     CandyHighlightShoppingComments (4)

Monday, March 3, 2014

Off to London

Union Jack Chocolate Bar

I’m traveling this week, picking up new colourful and flavourful things to review in the coming weeks.

Do you have a British favorite that I haven’t reviewed yet?

UPDATE: Thanks to everyone for your suggestions! I was able to find a lot of the items, plus a few more I’m looking forward to trying. I have to photograph everything, but they’ll be reviewed in the coming months.

POSTED BY Cybele AT 12:30 am     CandyCANDY BLOGUnited KingdomHighlightShoppingComments (26)

Monday, December 16, 2013

Sugarfina Beverly Hills & Trio of Goodies

P1110361A few weeks ago I went to the preview opening of the brick & mortar store for Sugarfina. (More photos here on la.eater.) The evening included tastings of a half a dozen of their favorite candies and of course I got to meet one of the co-owners, Rosie, whom I’ve been corresponding with via email for about a year.

Sugarfina opened earlier this year as a webstore, selling a carefully curated selection of candies from around the world. Many of the gummis are made with all natural flavors & colors and come in extraordinary flavor combinations and shapes. The chocolates are a mix of whimsy and sophistication, with an array of malted milk balls, caramels and cordials.

P1110354

Sugarfina displays morsels, everything in the shop is morselized, easy for hand-to-mouth sampling and when you’re not eating it, it’s fun to look at. While browsing the store, if you didn’t know it was candy, everything could easily be mistaken for beads or buttons. 

Sugarfina Trio

Guest were treated to a $10 gift certificate, which I put to good use right away. I even had a shopping list before I got there so I wouldn’t be distracted. I chose to create my own bento box. It’s a sleeve with three slots. It’s exceptionally well designed. The robin’s egg blue and white design is carried through the store and packaging. The inside of the box has blue scalloped concentric circles on white, as does the tissue in the bag it was placed in. The box itself is $4, which isn’t bad when you consider it doesn’t need wrapping and is durable & reusable. The cubes that fit in there were either $7 or $8.

The other change from my previous Sugarfina sampling is that the boxes for the candy have changed. They were a polyester soft plastic, which were not really that secure (hard to keep closed once you took the clear plastic stickers off). The new boxes are acrylic and after you take the labels off, they’re also reusable. They’re airtight, so any leftover candy keeps far longer.

Fruttini

One of the things that got me to actually go over to Beverly Hills after work was the fact that one of the new products is an Italian fruit gumdrop mix called Citrus and Berry Fruttini. They’re little pâte de fruit, coated in crunchy sugar.

The berry is a Wild Blueberry. They’re mild and sweet with a dark raspberry jam flavor and then that hint of black tea that I often taste in blueberries.

The yellow is Italian Lemon made from femminello lemons. I’ve never had a fresh femminello lemon before, but I’ve had limoncello, which is a sweet lemon liqueur that uses the peels. These are quite zesty and reminded me of Meyer lemons. It’s tart, it has a great balance between the sweetness and the oily flavors of the lemon oils.

The orange is Blood Orange. This one was definitely orange, but lacking the zesty notes that the lemon had. If I were to pick these up again, I’d go with the all Lemon selection, which they sell separately. There’s also a Wild Strawberry which I didn’t get to try.

Rating: 8 out of 10

Sugarfina Greek Kumquats

I am quite fond of candies citrus zest, but the Aphrodite Kumquat goes far above and beyond that humble confection.

At the heart (sorry it’s not better depicted) there is a whole kumquat. It’s about the size of a small olive and completely candied. Unlike regular orange peels, the rind of a kumquat is pretty thin but when you eat the whole thing, you’re also getting the pulp inside. So there’s a juicy, tangy orange syrup at the center, along with the very strong clementine-like peel around it. Then it’s covered in a thin layer of chocolate. That chocolate is infused with the orangey oils and then the whole thing is encased in a beautifully treated apricot-colored sugar shell.

One is more than enough. They’re quite intense, the strength of the citrus oils are enough to leave my tongue burning for several hours. Sure, there are only eight of them in the box, but how could anyone eat more than two in a day?

Rating: 8 out of 10

Sparkles

The Chocolate Sparkles are also Greek and another special find. They’re like the smooth and flat little rocks you might pick up on the beach: except they’re an exceptionally unnatural shimmery blue.

The candy shell is thick, like a Jordan almond so there’s a lot of crunch. The dark chocolate center is smooth and creamy with an excellent silky melt and deep cocoa flavors. Unlike many dark chocolate lentils, these truly are made with dark chocolate that has no additional milk or dairy fat in it. (Though there may be traces of milk, wheat or nuts as they’re processed on shared equipment.)

Rating: 8 out of 10

P1110359

These also came in yellow and pink, also with the shimmery finish. I don’t see them on the website, but they were definitely for sale in the store.

Sugarfina - Bento BoxesThe prices are, well, Beverly Hills. However, unlike someplace like Dylan’s Candy Bar, where you portion out your generic candy into generic bags for $12.99 a pound, many of those products can be purchased at the drug store for a fraction of the price. Sugarfina’s per pound price point is more, about $25.00 per pound, but about 40% of Sugarfina’s candy can’t be purchased anywhere else in the United States and is far better quality than the drug store fare at most pick a mix candy stores. $25.00 per pound isn’t out of range for the chocolate items, but it is steep for sugar candy, even if it’s all natural.

Even though they don’t scoop by the pound, if you stop in the store, they do have little 1 ounce packets you can buy of many of the items to sample or just have a little treat. In true SoCal fashion they also offer a candy concierge.

It’s hard to rationalize it as an everyday candy shop (like I seem to treat See’s now that they’re walking distance from me), but the decadent packaging and precious treatment of the candy elevates it all to a different level. It’s not snacking, it’s sampling. It’s for grown ups.

Sugarfina
9495 S Santa Monica Blvd
(Little Santa Monica Blvd between Rodeo Dr. & Beverly Dr.)
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
website

Related Candies

  1. Sugarfina: The Chocolates
  2. Sugarfina: The Gummis
  3. New York City Candy Spree
  4. Limited Edition Ritter Sport Winter Kreation + Factory Store
  5. Choward’s Spearmint & Lemon
  6. Friday’s San Francisco Candy Adventure
  7. Daffin’s Candies Factory & World’s Largest Candy Store
  8. Dylan’s Candy Bar and Candy Bars

POSTED BY Cybele AT 5:10 pm     CandyLos AngelesReviewChocolateJelly Candy8-TastyItalyShoppingComments (1)

Friday, December 6, 2013

Candy Spotting: Christmas 2013

Whack and UnwrapI’ve been prowling the store shelves since October to see what’s back this year in seasonal favorites and what might be new.

I’ve been pretty excited so see so many old favorites returning plus a few new additions. The flavor combinations of pumpkin spice, peppermint bark and gingerbread continue strong showings with a few egg nog and chili pepper items out there, too.

This is by no means a definitive list, but I’ve tried to actually find the announced products in stores before adding them to my list.

Candy Cane Kisses

Hershey’s

Twizzlers Tree Shaped Cherry Candy (new)
Hershey’s Candy Cane Bar Mint Candy with Candy Bits (new - review)
Hershey’s Candy Cane Kisses (old review when they were made with real white chocolate)
Hershey’s Mint Truffle Kisses (review)
Hershey’s Cherry Cordial Kisses (review)
Hershey’s Mint Miniatures (white creme with nonpareils, Special Dark with mint and Milk Chocolate with mint - here’s an old review when the white chocolate was made with cocoa butter)
Reese’s Trees (just like the Eggs)
Reese’s Bells (foil wrapped bell shaped candies about the size of the regular miniatures)
Reese’s Snow Board Santa (kind of like the big Reester Bunny around Easter)
HersheyEts (review) - I’ve seen these at the Hershey’s store before in bags but also in those candy cane tubes at major retailers.
Hershey’s Collection Almond Clusters & Chocolate Covered Pretzels (new) - packaged in cardboard gable box
Giant Hershey Bars (1 Pound)
World’s Largest Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups (1 Pound - review)
Hershey’s Kisses Santa Hat just a large kiss with red and white foil
Hershey’s Giant Kisses

Mike and Ike Holiday Medley

Just Born

Peeps Chocolate Covered Peppermint Trees (Milk & Dark Chocolate)
Peeps White Snowmen (I like the snowmen because they’re one of the few varieties that doesn’t have artificial colors)
Peeps Green Trees
Peeps Peppermint Chocolate Dips
Peeps Gingerbread Men
Mike and Ike Merry Mix

Perugina Baci (Nestle)

Nestle

Wonka Gobstoppers Snowballs
Wonka Frosty Nerds (watermelon, wild cherry & punch)
Wonka Nerds Holiday Rope (photo)
Wonka Holiday SweeTart Gummis (red & green and I think they’re shaped like Oompa Loompa faces - photo)
Nestle Butterfinger Jingles (review)
Nestle Crunch Jingles
Butterfinger and Nestlé Crunch Medallions kind of like coins, about an ounce, but not wrapped in foil
Wonka SweeTarts & Spree Candy Cane Tubes (new)
Wonka Pixy Stix Powder-Filled Candy Canes (new) these are actual hard candies filled with sour powder. Definitely an innovative item.
Wonka Candy Canes in Spree, SweeTart and Gobstopper flavors
Wonka Nerds & Fun Dip Fantastical Fun Books like the classic Life Savers story books
Wonka Giant Pixy Stix Giant Canes are just canes filled with the plastic Pixy Stix ... lots more plastic than candy
Perugina Baci (review) in holiday packaging - they’re much easier to find during the run up to the holidays than usual

M&Ms White Chocolate Peppermint

Mars & Wrigley’s

Life Savers Tin - holds 7 rolls of three different varieties - comes in Butter Rum, Cherry or 5 Flavor package design
Life Savers Sweet Story Candy Rolls and Gummies (the box that looks like a book and has a collection of Life Saver Rolls in it)
Life Savers Hard Candy Holiday Mix (cherry, apple & candy cane)
M&Ms Holiday Mint (revew)
M&Ms Cherry Cordial
M&Ms White Chocolate Peppermint (review)
Dove Peppermint Bark (in foil wrapped Promises & boxed bark review)
Dove Promises Snowflake Assortment (round pieces in milk, dark & caramel with snowflakes molded in them)
Dove White Chocolate with Creamy Center - I don’t think these are the same as the Promises I tried last year
Snickers Nutcrackers (review)
Snickers Peanut Butter Santas (review)
3 Musketeers Hot Cocoa with Marshmallows in minis size
Twix Santas like the Twix Eggs, they’re like a double wide Twix bar.
Twix Gingerbread (review)
Mars Heritage Tins - pencil box sized tins filled with miniatures - designed like classic candy bar wrappers - come in Snickers, M&Ms, Twix and Milky Way)
Skittles Holiday Mix - features Strawberry, Wild Cherry, Lemon, Grape and Green Apple in red and green.

Brach's Holiday Nougats

Ferrara Candy (Ferrara Pan, Farley’s & Sathers + Brach’s)

Brach’s Christmas Nougats in Peppermint & Wintergreen and Cinnamon (review)
Brach’s Gloria Mix (classic straw & filled candies)
Brach’s Holiday Mix (classic filled candies)
Brach’s Holiday Mints (pillow mints with a green minty jelly filling)
Brach’s Spicettes (gumdrops in green & red)
Ferrara Chocolate Oranges (review)

Candy Cane Tootsie Pop Drops

Tootsie

Tootsie Roll Candy Cane Pop Drops (review)
Tootsie Roll Candy Cane Pops (review)
Tootsie Roll Banks (Tootsie & Midgees)
Tootsie Roll Holiday Midgees (I have no idea what these are - the package doesn’t say)
Christmas Dots (review)
Andes Peppermint Crunch (white chocolate with crunchy peppermint candies)
Andes Cherry Jubilee Thins
Andes Toffee Creme Thins
Junior Mints Peppermint Crunch (review)

Russell Stover Santas

Russell Stover

Ribbon Candy (I suspect this is just a repackage of Sevigny’s)
Marshmallow Snow Man (large ones - come in regular milk chocolate covered and chocolate covered in milk chocolate)
Peppermint Bark Snowman - made with real white chocolate
Marshmallow Santas review
Coconut Wreath review
Strawberry Cream Santa- review
Milk Chocolate Coconut Santa - review
Maple Cream Santa in milk and dark chocolate now - review
Peanut Butter Santa - review
Gingerbread Santa (review)
Peppermint Cream Santa (review)

swedish

Cadbury/Adams

Swedish Fish (red & green) in bags or theater boxes
Sour Patch Kids (red & green) in bags or theater boxes
Cadbury Solid Milk Chocolate Balls (like the mini-eggs - sold by Hershey’s in the United States)

Ghirardelli Squares - Peppermint Bark

Ghirardelli Chocolate

Ghirardelli Hollow Chocolate Nutcracker
Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark (review)
Ghirardelli Squares Holiday Impressions milk chocolate squares with white chocolate “cameo” centers
Ghirardelli Holiday Squares - egg nog & peppermint bark (review)

Lindt Milk Reindeer

Other Items of Interest

Giant Toblerone Bars
Toblerone Snow Top - a milk chocolate bar with white chocolate cap on the triangles
Terry’s Chocolate Oranges (Milk with Orange, Dark with Orange and White with Orange)
Maxfield’s Assorted Chocolates (I haven’t tried these boxed chocolates yet, they’re less expensive than Russell Stover and probably on par with Elmer’s)
Fannie May Mint Meltaway & Pixies (individually wrapped - pixie review & meltaway review)
Ritter Sport Peppermint (review)
Florida Tropic Oranges in a variety of flavors - review
Zachary Confections Egg Nog Candy Corn (I add these to my list every year, but I still haven’t seen them in stores)
Zachary Confections Candy Cane Corn
Nips Egg Nog (review)
Dark Roca
Dark Chocolate Peppermint Roca
Mocha Roca
TicTac Holiday Twist either red and white or green and red Tic Tac mixes
Lindt Hollow Chocolate Santas, Snowmen & Bears
J&Ds Sriracha Candy Canes (spotted at Cost Plus World Market)
Au’Some 3-DEEs Santa Gummis

What are you looking forward to most? And what are you having trouble finding this year? What did I leave out?

POSTED BY Cybele AT 2:51 pm     CandyChristmasHighlightShoppingComments (6)

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Candy Spotting: Giant Candy Gifts

It’s not a particularly new development to see giant versions of classic candies on shelves, but I have seen more than usual lately. Here’s a rundown of what’s available these days:

World's Largest Reese's Peanut Butter Cups

Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups (review)
Details: 1 pound total weight - each cup is one half pound, kind of like a peanut butter pot pie made of chocolate.
Price: $12.99 regularly
Where to Find: These are sold widely on the web and in stores. Check mass market retailers like Target, KMart and drug store chains.

1 Pound of York Peppermint Patties

Giant York Peppermint Patties (review)
Details: 1 pound total weight - like the Reese’s, each pattie is one half pound.
Price: $12.99 regularly
Where to Find: These are sold widely on the web and in stores. Check mass market retailers like Target, KMart and drug store chains.

Hershey’s 1 Pound Bar
Details: 1 pound total weight
Price: $12.99 regularly
Where to Find: These are sold widely on the web and in stores. Check mass market retailers like Target, KMart and drug store chains.

World’s Largest Hershey Bar
Details: 5 pounds total weight
Price: $34.99 regularly
Where to Find: These are sold on the web and some specialty stores, I also saw them at KMart.

Snickers Slice n' Share

Snickers Slice n Share (review)
Details: 1 pound total weight, all one bar.
Price: $12.99 regularly
Where to Find: These are sold widely on the web and in stores. Check mass market retailers like Target, KMart and drug store chains.

Giant Toblerone

Toblerone 14 ounces
Details: 14 ounces (just shy of a full pound) in a long, triangular box. Some boxes are the standard creamy yellow, but there are other light blue winter-themed boxes available as well.
Price: $8.99
Where to Find: I spotted these both at Target and Cost Plus World Market. They’re a good value, compared to the other giant bars. 

hot tamales 1.5 boxMike and Ike and Hot Tamales Giant Box
Details: 1.5 pounds in a large box containing 48 snack sized packets.
Price: $19.99 (spotted at KMart)
Where to Find: I’ve only seen them in stores at KMart, but the JustBorn.com webstore also sells them.

A better value when it comes to these is really the vending packages, which are 5 pounds, about the size of an airplane pillow and cost less, they’re usually available at places like Smart & Final or on the web. (Amazon link.)

Nestle Crunch 1 Pound Bar
Details: 1 pound total weight
Price: $12.99
Where to Find: I’ve spotted these at KMart and Target

Russell Stover 1 Pound

Russell Stover 2 Giant Bars S’Mores (review of regular size)
Details: 1 pound total weight - two bars.
Price: $9.99
Where to Find: I’ve spotted these at KMart and Walgreen’s so far, but you can also get them directly from RussellStover.com

Russell Stover 2 Giant Bars Pecan Delight (review of regular size)
Details: 1 pound total weight - two bars.
Price: $9.99
Where to Find: I’ve spotted these at KMart and Walgreen’s so far, but you can also get them directly from RussellStover.com

RM Palmer Giant 1/4 Peanut Butter CupRM Palmer Giant 1/4 Peanut Butter Cup (review)
Details: 4 ounce peanut butter cup
Price: $1.00
Where to Find: RiteAid and other drug stores

Giant Tootsie Pop
Details: 8 Tootsie Pops in a giant Tootsie Pop shaped dome on a stick
Price: $8.99
Where to Find: I’ve spotted these at Cost Plus World Market

Giant versions of standard candies are rarely better than the originals. They’re a novelty and play off the notion that more is better. But mostly more is fun, more is sharing and more is delightful. If someone doesn’t like the standard version, they’re unlikely to enjoy the giant, so choose carefully. But the good news is that these are rather inexpensive and make a fun item for a child to give to an adult in their life.

Have you seen any other giant versions of candies for the holidays?

Related Candies

  1. Trader Joe’s Holiday Roundup 2012
  2. Christmas Candy Spotting 2010
  3. Jumbo Gum Ball Eggs
  4. Big Tex Giant Jelly Beans
  5. Giant Pixy Stix

POSTED BY Cybele AT 12:06 pm     CandyChristmasHighlightShoppingComments (2)

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Halloween Candy Spotting 2013

When a candy season comes around, I take special interest in what’s new, what’s returning and trends on the store shelves with holiday candy. Here’s the 2013 Halloween shopping roundup.

Brach's Halloween Mellocremes

Last week I was invited to participate in the Nosh Show podcast, we’re talking about candy and a bit about Halloween candy. You can listen to the Nosh Show:


TRICK OR TREAT
I haven’t decided what I’m giving out for Halloween yet this year. I’m planning to make use of the leftover Jolly Rancher Caramel Apple and Charms Candy Corn Lollipops from my reviews and probably some Airheads, since the kids in the neighborhood seem to like those. As for the chocolate items, I don’t know yet. Last year I gave out Unreal Candy, which is ethically sourced and uses natural ingredients. I’d like to find another chocolate candy that is certified (not using child slaves), but it’s hard to find candy items for kids that are well priced (we have about 40 kids visit) and also of actual interest to kids.

HERSHEY’S
I didn’t see any new items from Hershey’s this year for Halloween, but most of the old favorites have returned.

  • Pumpkin Spice Kisses (review)
  • KIT KAT Orange Wafer Bars
  • Reese’s Pumpkins (review)
  • Cadbury Screme Egg Candy is a green yolk version of the fondant egg for Easter
  • M&Ms Pumpkin Spice

    MARS
    Mars also seems to be playing it safe, with only a few new items and returning items, but mostly Halloween themed regular items.

  • NEW: Pumpkin Spice M&Ms - a Target exclusive this year (review)
  • Milky Way Caramel Apple Minis (review)
  • Snickers Pumpkin (review) also comes in Snickers Squared Peanut Butter version
  • Candy Corn White Chocolate M&Ms (review)
  • Mary Janes

    NECCO
    Necco always seems to list some interesting things, but I never see them in stores.

  • NECCO Batwing Wafers - like conversation hearts except shaped like bats and cinnamon flavored
  • NECCO Mummy Hearts - like conversation hearts except they’re marshmallow, hot chocolate, grape and candy corn flavored with ghoulish phrases
  • Skybar Zombie Food - milk chocolate brains, hearts and feet filled with red caramel
  • Mary Jane Peanut Butter Kisses (review)
  • Clark Wicked Mix (review)
  • Brach's S'mores Candy Corn

    FERRARA CANDY (Includes FARLEY’S & SATHERS and BRACH’S)
    There have been some big changes in these companies over the years. In the past 10 years alone Brach’s has been sold, sold again and now acquired through the Ferrara Pan acquisition of Farley’s and Sathers last year. Brach’s candy corn, one of their iconic candy products, moved production to Mexico about 2 or 3 years ago and I don’t think it tastes the same any longer. But I have high hopes for the new company making the most of each of the candy brands in its division and perhaps even improving the quality.

    That aside, Brach’s seems to be their only brand with seasonal candies, though Lemonheads and Trolli Gummis are available in treating packaging.

  • NEW: Brach’s S’mores Candy Corn (review)
  • Brach’s Milk Maid Caramel Candy Corn (review)
  • Brach’s Autumn Mix (review)
  • Brach’s Halloween Mix (flavored mellocreams in holiday shapes) (review)
  • Brach’s Indian Corn
  • Brach’s Mellocreme Pumpkins
  • Bat Dots - Blood Orange

    TOOTSIE
    Tootsie has been making some great Halloween candies for years. I’ve always enjoyed Tootsie Pops but their newer introductions feel fresh but still like modern classics.

  • Blood Orange Dots (Bats) (review)
  • Ghost Dots (Clear)  (review)
  • Candy Corn Dots (Vanilla)  (review)
  • Orchard Mix Caramel Apple Pops (review)
  • Vanilla Tootsie Rolls
  • Caramel Apple Sugar Babies
  • (review) Available in snack packs for Trick or Treat

    Peeps Spooky Cats

    JUST BORN
    Just Born makes a few varieties of Peeps for Halloween and some Hot Tamales and Mike and Ike for treating.

  • Peeps Chocolate Pumpkins (review)
  • Peeps Ghosts & Pumpkins (I like the ghosts because they’re the only Peeps that aren’t artificially colored.)
  • Peeps Chocolate Mousse Flavored Marshmallow Cats
  • Chocolate Dipped Peeps Orange Chicks in Milk & Dark Chocolate
  • Peeps Snack Size - individually wrapped small Peeps for Halloween trick-or-treating
  • Mike and Ike Mummy Mix and Vampire Variety
  • Nestle Butterfinger Pumpkin

    NESTLE & WONKA
    Wonka had a hug flurry of innovative products for a few years, but has settled back into treat packaging without much in the way of seasonal specific flavors/iterations.

  • Butterfinger Pumpkins
  • Spooky Nerds
  • Spooky Nerds Rope
  • Russell Stover Giant S'mores Bar

    RUSSELL STOVER
    I’m always fond of Russell Stover’s pumpkins, since their holiday candies are really the only time I buy the brand. There are a few new ones this year that are in line with Russel Stover’s strengths.

  • NEW: Russell Stover Big Bite Caramel Apple (review)
  • NEW: Russell Stover Big Bite Caramel Apple with Peanuts (review)
  • NEW: Russell Stover Pumpkin Pie (review)
  • NEW: Russell Stover Red Velvet Pumpkin (review of Santa version)
  • Russell Stover Strawberry Cream Pumpkin
  • Russell Stover Coconut Dream Pumpkin
  • Russell Stover Chocolate Marshmallow Pumpkin
  • Russell Stover Dark Chocolate covered Marshmallow Pumpkin (review)
  • Russell Stover Extra Crunchy Peanut Butter Pumpkin
  • Russell Stover Marshmallow Pumpkin (milk chocolate) (review)
  • Starburst Original Fruit Flavored Candy Corn

    WRIGLEY’S
    I didn’t see much new from Wrigley’s. I think they’re hiding from trick-or-treaters because they’re afraid they’ll get egged over the Lime to Green Apple Skittle switch. Their brands include Life Savers, Starburst and Skittles plus some gum brands that I rarely see in trick-or-treat packaging.

  • Starburst Candy Corn (review)
  • Jelly Belly Mellocremes

    JELLY BELLY
    Jelly Belly is a bit too upscale for trick-or-treat candy. But it’s fun for gifting or setting out for parties.

  • NEW: Vile Villains Jelly Belly Mixes - single serve packages featuring Disney villains with their own flavors. Seen in the store: Captain Hook (treasure chest mix) and Snow White’s Evil Queen (a mix of apple flavors)
  • Jelly Belly Deluxe Halloween Mix (review)
  • Jelly Belly Candy Corn Jelly Beans (review)
  • Jelly Belly Giant Candy Corn
  • Jelly Belly Sour Gummi Pumpkins
  • Jelly Belly Fall Festival Mix
  • DSC02135r

    OTHER COMPANIES:

  • Pop Rocks Pumpkin Patch Orange
  • TicTac Bewitching Blend - I couldn’t figure out what flavors they are, but they’re orange and green, so let’s say Orange and Green Apple.
  • Halloween Candy Mega Buttons - you know those strips of paper with dried candy on them, there’s a giant version and now a Halloween version on black paper with grape, candy corn, green apple and mystery flavors.
  • Trader Joe’s Ghoulie Gummy Tummies Pumpkins & Spiders
  • Sixlets come in trick or treat packaging with orange and black colors. One of the few that’s gluten free.
  • Candy Corn Kisses

    NOT RETURNING:

  • Russell Stover “Day of the Dead” Skeletons (review)
  • Russell Stover Peanut Butter Candy Pumpkins
  • Hershey’s Candy Corn Kisses (review) and Caramel Apple Kisses (review)
  • Mary Jane Wicked Mix (review)
  • Brach’s Gummy Candy Corn (review)
  • Halloween Lifesavers Gummies Spooky Shapes
  • Have you seen anything new & exciting in stores this year? What are you planning to give out to kids, if they come to your house?

    Related Candies

    1. M&Ms Pumpkin Spice
    2. Starburst Original Fruit Flavored Candy Corn
    3. Halloween Candy Spotting 2012
    4. Limited Edition Milky Way Caramel Apple Minis
    5. M&Ms White Chocolate Candy Corn
    6. Halloween 2010 Product Run Down
    7. Halloween Dots: Bat, Candy Corn & Ghost

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 12:34 pm     CandyHalloweenHighlightShoppingComments (4)

    Wednesday, July 10, 2013

    Sugarfina: The Gummis

    Sugarfina - Bento BoxesSugarfina is a new candy webstore with a unique set of offerings.

    Based in Southern California, Sugarfina brings a chic aesthetic to all their candy with their minimalist packaging in robin’s egg blue and square formats. The candy is sold in “bulk” that is, it’s repackaged by them and sold in an array of different weights. They have created a superb curated list of candies. Some you’ll recognize, but their biggest selling point is an array of exquisite European candies that I’ve never seen sold anywhere else.

    Candy is sold in little boxes of different weights or in mixed boxes (they call Bentos) that make excellent gifts. Their team truly understand that candy should appeal first to the eye and then to the rest of the senses.

    Sugarfina Bento Box

    I still get plenty of offers for free candy samples, but lately it has to be something pretty special to get me to bite. But when you see this list of candies, you’ll see what got me interested. Today I’m presenting the assortment of gummis (and one jelly candy). All of the gummis are from Germany and most feature natural colors.

    Sugarfina - Bitty Berries

    Bitty Berries is a mix of three different gummis. There’s a large raspberry looking gummi that has a rather raspberry flavor. Then there are three smaller berries, kind of like petite blueberries that are different colors and flavors. The light amber ones are like a white grape juice flavor, lightly tangy but with a black currant note to them. The pink version is and the purple is like a jammy raspberry.  Blueberry, Raspberry, Blackberry, Cranberry and Bilberry.

    They’re just exquisitely beautiful. Even when I wasn’t interested in eating them, they were just too cute to look at.

    Rating: 8 out of 10

    Sugarfina - Champagne Bears

    Champagne Bears come in two colors: a soft peachy pink and a lightly yellow clear. The clear is like a clean apple juice flavor with a light peppery note. The peachy one is, well, much the same. I couldn’t really tell them apart except that sometimes the pink one seemed to be a little more raspberry flavored. They’re firm and intense. They’re well formed and held their shape well, even though they were jammed into their little cube.

    I liked them, but didn’t think that they were anything better than the new juicy Haribo. But I do like the colors and think that for a special occasion, they’d be a nice favor.

    Rating: 8 out of 10

    DSC_2474rb

    Sugar Peach Sweethearts - I was pretty scared of these. They smelled strongly of peach, not in a bad way but in a strong way. They were so strong that I had to take them out of the bento box and sequester them by themselves so as not to contaminate the chocolate pieces they were co-mingling with. So I was afraid that they’d be overwhelmingly chemical tasting.

    Quite the opposite is true. They’re little miracle pieces, on the tongue they actual feel for a moment like a real peach. The texture of the sugar sanding is velvety like the fuzz of the peach. The flavor is at once tangy and fruity and honey-sweet and floral and woodsy, like actual peaches. There’s no weird artificial coloring in there to give it a metallic aftertaste. They’re a bit more tart that I’d probably like if I were to eat them by the handful, but as a little refresher on a hot day when I have a dry mouth, these are unbeatable. 

    Rating: 10 out of 10

    DSC_2260rb

    Queen of Hearts were billed on the website as three different flavors: pineapple, grapefruit and black currant. They’re also three different sizes of hearts. So it’s a lovely looking combination, although the largest heard gets folded over a bit inside the little cube.

    Pink was indistinct, but reminded me enough of pineapple to make me think that’s what it was. Slightly floral with a tart bite and a crisp flavor to it. It was more like canned pineapple though not as syrupy.

    Clear tastes like peach. I’m not sure what flavor it was supposed to be, I was hoping it was the promised grapefruit, but it was tangy and a little peppery. (I did notice that the peach mentioned earlier were very strong, I was wondering if the flavor migrated from the more delicate grapefruit.)

    The dark one was definitely black currant. It was strong and had notes of wine and deep boiled cherry.

    Rating: 7 out of 10

    Sugarfina - Cuba Libre Gummi

    Cuba Libre is simply amazing. It’s a cola gummi, so far so good, with a little softer bubble of rum within. It’s stunning. The cola flavor is spicy and tart, a mix of nutmeg, cinnamon and perhaps a little warm kick of ginger but nothing overt and then the acidic bite of lemon. The rum is sweet and a little on the caramel side. I’ve never seen these anywhere else, and I can’t believe they aren’t being imported and sold in the US by the cargo container as it is. If there’s a reason to order from Sugarfina, it’s the Cuba Libre gummi.

    Rating: 10 out of 10

    Sugarfina - Minty Polar Bears

    Minty Polar Bears are downright weird and I’ll go ahead and warn you that they’re not mint. They’re like a bubble gum flavored mentholated chewy cough drop. The first note on the tongue is a little tartness then a huge whiff of what I can only describe as acetone (which I sometimes get confused with banana flavoring). Then there’s a menthol hit, a little more of a sort of mild lime flavor and the bitterness of that zest. It all ends with a slight queasy feeling.

    I’ve had eucalyptus gummis before and liked them quite a bit, so I was hoping for something like that. I find them curious enough that I continue to sample them from time to time. But I never feel like I want to eat another one, just that I should.

    Rating: 6 out of 10

    DSC_2466rb

    Heavenly Sours are little stars, comets and crescent moons in fruity flavors. They’re sour sanded and come in lovely naturally tinted colors. They’re not actually gummis, they’re jellies. They’re made in the US, not in Germany like most of the other gummis from Sugarfina. They’re tart and have nicely distinguished flavors. Orange is a zesty and tart orange. Lemon is wonderfully sour. Blue is raspberry and a little overdone. Red is cherry and is, well, cherry.

    Rating: 7 out of 10

    As a thank you gift or something for someone who has everything, this is a great option. It’s not cheap, so it’s not something I’m likely to treat myself to very often. They also have lots of themed boxes and kits, so it’s easy to pick for Coffee Lovers, Licorice Aficionados, or Caramel Fiends. The large bento boxes with 8 x 4 ounce boxes of treats are $50. By the pound, the candy is $17.50.

    They do a good job of labeling for allergies as well, even if they won’t tell me who make those Cuba Libre gummis.They’re currently only available via the web, but there’s talk of a store in the future here on the west side of Los Angeles.

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 3:24 pm     CandyReviewColaGummi CandySour6-Tempting7-Worth It8-Tasty10-SuperbGermanyUnited StatesHighlightShoppingComments (14)

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    These candies will be reviewed shortly:

    • 10 Candies that Shouldn’t Be So Disappointing

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