Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Brach’s Mandarin Orange Slices

Brach's Mandarin Orange SlicesWhen it comes to classic American candies, the fruit slices are right up there at the top. They’re a simple mix of sugar, fruit flavors and a bit of thickener in the form of corn starch. You can even make them at home, but since the ingredients are so inexpensive they’re a great value as a store bought item.

Brach’s is currently updating their line of candies with new packaging and some new formulas. They’re also adding a twist to some old favorites, including the fruit slices with their new Brach’s Mandarin Orange Slices. In this case they’re calling them Mandarin Orange Jellies Made with Real Fruit Juice.

Personally, I’ve always loved Orange Slices, and their companion jelly candy, the Spearmint Leaves. I never really thought they needed much tinkering, though the best version I think I’ve had are the gourmet Gumdrops that Whole Foods sells that are made with all natural flavors and colors along with some more exotic flavors.

Brach's Mandarin Orange Slices

These fruit jellies are lovely to look at. They’re about the size of an actual mandarin section in this case, though a bit more stylized in their format with heavy little segments making them rounded and bulbous. The color is quite orange. I even noticed that the sugar sanding on the outside is colored. (Most jelly slices just have a plain, large grain sugar sanding to keep them from sticking together.)

Brach's Mandarin Orange Slices

These were obviously fresh, since they’re a new product. They’re soft but still firm enough to have a stiff bite to them. The smell was great, just opening the bag (or even re-opening the bag) was like peeling a fresh orange. As a jelly they’re smooth and dissolve easily in the mouth. (A gelatin based candy would be chewier and have a longer melting process.) The flavor has many different elements. There’s the typical orange juice note which has the distinct orange flavor and a mellow note of tartness. Then there’s a large hit of zest to the whole thing, a slight bitterness that pops in and then disappears. Incredibly there is something rather “mandarin” about the flavor that made it a bit different from the generic orange. The other item of note here is that the sugar sanding has flavor as well, just a hint of the zest.

They’re soothing. They’re not the most exciting candy in the world, but even with all of my choices (and believe me, at any given moment I have at least fifty different things to choose from), I still found myself eating these.

It’s hard to sell folks on a brand name item for a classic candy where there are so many different brands and generics available. I don’t know if I’d always reach for Brach’s when it came to Spearmint Leaves or Orange Slices, but if the price is the same or close enough, these are a step above.

Name: Mandarin Orange Slices
Brand: Brach’s
Place Purchased: samples from Farley's & Sathers
Price: $1.59 retail
Size: 10.5 ounces
Calories per ounce: 94
Categories: Candy, Brach's, Farley's & Sathers, Jelly Candy, 7-Worth It, United States

POSTED BY Cybele AT 10:51 am Tracker Pixel for Entry     CandyBrach'sFarley's & SathersJelly Candy7-Worth ItUnited States

  1. They look amazing!

    Comment by Ana on 5/24/11 at 11:11 am #
  2. I’ve never really liked orange flavored gummies, but maybe these are the best?

    Comment by Patrick on 5/24/11 at 5:03 pm #
  3. Aaaah! Orange slices always remind me of my grandmother.  She always had them when we came to visit.  Thanks for the memories!

    Comment by Diane Judy on 5/26/11 at 5:22 am #
  4. Real taste of orange.

    Comment by Kamlesh Mundre on 6/13/11 at 4:07 am #
  5. Albertsons on northwest has been informed this candy mandarin orange slices, has been discontinued; to my great disappointment; what gives?

    Comment by valerie on 2/17/15 at 11:25 pm #
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