Wednesday, August 29, 2007

VerMints

The mint market is well, full of mints. So what’s a company gonna do to distinguish themselves from the crowded field? Ver thinks it’s hit on the right balance of novelty, quality and qualifications. Their line of six different flavors are vegan, Kosher and gluten free, nut free and all-natural (and featuring many organic ingredients).

vermints-peppermintVer containers are cute little steel tins that are easy to open and close and feature eye-catching designs that reflect the flavors inside.

The blue tin was predictably Peppermint, their original flavor. Unlike a mint like Altoids, these aren’t blindingly strong. Just simply, well, mints. The texture is pleasant. Not chalky, but a little crumbly but sufficiently dense. The intensity of the mint grows (though sometimes one mint may be stronger than another) as it dissolves and leaves a breath-freshening coolness when it’s gone.

vermints-wintermintWinterMint is what I’m guessing is wintergreen since it features wintergreen oil in the ingredients. I think wintergreen flavor is undervalued in our culture and I blame Pepto Bismol for giving us the association of wintergreen with being sick. (Some additional blame goes to Ben Gay for making us think of locker-rooms and old people.) Upon reading a little more on the subject, wintergreen is not to be taken lightly as it can be toxic in very large doses, which you really can’t achieve with a tin.

This was like one of those big Canada pink mints (wintergreen is also called Canada mint), but not as chalky. Smooth and peppery, I enjoyed these quite a bit. There were also little bits of real peppermint leaves in the pastilles.

vermints-gingerWith my motion sickness difficulties I tend to eat a lot of Ginger candies. I like to strike a balance between their spiciness, the amount of actual ginger in the candy and of course the overall taste. Too much spice and I can’t maintain my intake (though fanning my mouth often takes my mind off of nausea ... so that’s effective).

These crazy mints have a lot of ginger flavor in them and burn on my tongue right away. It dissipates after a moment and I forget about the inital scalding by the time I eat another one.

They have two kinds of ginger in them: ground ginger root and ginger flavor. I think ginger goes particularly well with Maple Syrup.

vermints-cinnThe bright red tin is hard to miss and easy to guess the flavor is cinnamon (well, they call it CinnaMint).

It’s definitely cinnamon, completely spicy, kind of woodsy and a little sweet. There are peppermint leaves in this one too, but I think it would have been better to throw a few little bits of cinnamon in there while they were at it. But they didn’t ask me.

For a while I was pronouncing this as Very Mints ... not realizing, first that they were spelled Ver with no I in there after the Ver. It wasn’t until I got the VerMONT connection that I understood the name. I still think Very Mints is a good name, too. I might start calling the state it Very Mont.

vermints-chaiThe two flavors that set this set apart are the flavor combos. This one, Chai features Fair Trade teas from Honest Tea. Of course this means that this ingredients simply say that it contains “Organic Chai Tea” which is a pretty vague thing, kind of like “cake mix”. I can taste a bit of the black tea background, some cinnamon and strong clove, a little nutmeg. I’d have liked, of course, more cardamom and perhaps vanilla notes. And less clove. Just make a clove mint and leave clove out of the other candies.

It’s pretty good and a nice change of pace from the others. The spicy notes are refreshing and I think gives me pleasant breath.

vermints-cafeThe last flavor is Cafe Express which features Fair Trade coffee from Green Mountain Coffee Roasters. The ingredients list both coffee and natural coffee flavor and they certainly smell like sweet, sweet coffee. The flavor is a little less intense, mellow and coffee-ish. On the good side of that, there’s no coffee breath afterwards. On the bad side, they feel more like candy than a breath mint. Not that there’s anything wrong with that since they’re pretty much gone now.

Overall I prefer the texture of these to Altoids, they’re a little smoother and the binder gums in there give them a very slight slippery feel on the tongue as they dissolve. The flavors are more pleasing than the similarly-textured Pastiglie Leone and completely different from the also-vegan friendly St. Claire’s Organic Mints.

Curiosities & other facts associated with these mints:

  • The mints are made in Canada.
  • The tins are made in China.
  • They contain “pure Vermont spring water” as an ingredient ... which means they must be shipping it up to Canada.
  • They contain two thickening gums - agar (derived from seaweed) and gum tragacanth (which I sometimes think is related to the coelocanth but is actually from some legume plant - okay, I’ve made that joke before ... but you may have missed it the first time!).
  • They contain organic tapioca syrup instead of the usual corn syrup (which is often GMO) and organic maple sugar syrup.
  • They’re Kosher.
  • Each mint contains 5 calories - there are approximately 40 in each tin.

  • Related Candies

    1. Hot Tamales Ice
    2. St. Claire’s Organic Mints & Tarts
    3. Anis de Flavigny
    4. Chocolate Dipped Altoids
    Name: VerMints Variety
      RATING:
    • 10 SUPERB
    • 9 YUMMY
    • 8 TASTY
    • 7 WORTH IT
    • 6 TEMPTING
    • 5 PLEASANT
    • 4 BENIGN
    • 3 UNAPPEALING
    • 2 APPALLING
    • 1 INEDIBLE
    Brand: VerMints
    Place Purchased: free samples
    Price: $2.50-$3.00
    Size: 1.41 ounces
    Calories per ounce: 130 (I think it's lower than that)
    Categories: Mint, Ginger, Coffee, Canada, Kosher, Fair Trade (some ingredients), Organic (some ingredients)

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 7:49 am Tracker Pixel for Entry    

    Comments
    1. Well, the Chai and Coffee are called pastilles, so it makes sense they are not like breath mints. In fact, I think Chai and mint would be a little… ick smile But I would love to get my hands on the pastilles! They seem tasty. And the Wintergreen. I -heart- Wintergreen

      Thanks for bringing our attention to more unusual products.

      Comment by Kate on 8/29/07 at 8:41 am #
    2. I’m glad I’m not the only one who immediately thinks “coelacanth” when reading “tragacanth”!

      Comment by RP on 8/29/07 at 8:53 am #
    3. Am I the only one who is bothered that the name “VerMints” is so close to the word “vermin”?  I think of that every time I see these in a store.

      Comment by lisa on 8/29/07 at 11:16 am #
    4. I’m not very keen on mints with other flavours thrown in, ginger+mint doesn’t seem like a very good combination to me. But I guess it couldn’t be worse than those lemon mint tic tacs which are like drinking a glass of orange juice after brushing your teeth. *shudder*

      Comment by leigh on 8/29/07 at 11:23 am #
    5. I was disappointed when I found out these were named for Vermont instead of varmint.  Sounds like a pleasant candy, though.

      Comment by Jon on 8/29/07 at 3:15 pm #
    6. The mints are made in Canada.
      They contain ?pure Vermont spring water? as an ingredient ... which means they must be shipping it up to Canada.

      Well, Vermont and Canada do share a border. Maybe they just run a hose over the border from the spring to the factory, instead of shipping it :^)

      Comment by Tricia on 8/29/07 at 4:21 pm #
    7. I adore these mints(/candies), and not just because they’re the perfect mint(/candy) for the Vegan on the go, but also because they taste so darned good. :D

      Comment by CupcakeMagee on 8/30/07 at 8:57 am #
    8. I’m with Lisa: using a word that looks a lot like “vermin” for a product that looks a little like maggots seems to be a REALLy bad marketing strategy—but clearly not everyone’s mind is wired to make the same connections mine does!

      Comment by good enough cook on 8/31/07 at 3:48 am #
    9. You should try Newman’s ginger mints- I think they are better. I especially like their texture better than VerMints.

      Comment by Diane on 3/21/08 at 5:54 pm #
    10. i took me a long time trying to order these from canada but they were ok 6 out of ten

      Comment by jacob on 3/31/10 at 11:09 am #
    11. *hehehheeheh* Thank you, I will now forever think of the coelocanth as a secret thickening agent in breath mints.

      These sound good; I think I’ll put them on a list I’m putting together.

      Comment by Chriss Cornish on 11/21/10 at 7:35 am #
    12. Diggin the PepperverminT!

      Comment by laweez luscious on 11/29/11 at 9:47 pm #

    Name:

    Email:
    (not published)

    Location:
    (not published - please don't put your address in there)

    URL:

    Comments may be held for moderation to prevent spam and other violations of the Candy Blog Comment Policy

    Remember me!

    Get updates to comments on this post?

    Next entry: Candy Source: Chocolates a la Carte

    Previous entry: Ritter Schokowurfel




     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    ABOUT

    FEEDS

    CONTACT

    • .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
    • Here are some frequently asked questions emailed to me you might want to read first.

    EMAIL DIGEST

      For a daily update of Candy Blog reviews, enter your email address:

      Delivered by FeedBurner

    CANDY RATINGS

    TYPE

    BRAND

    COUNTRY

    ARCHIVES

    Meticulously photographed and documented reviews of candy from around the world. And the occasional other sweet adventures. Open your mouth, expand your mind.

     

     

     

     

    Facebook IconTwitter IconTumblr IconRSS Feed IconEmail Icon

    COUNTDOWN

    Halloween Candy Season Ends

    59 days

    Read previous coverage

     

     

    Which seasonal candy selection do you prefer?

    Choose one or more:

    •   Halloween
    •   Christmas
    •   Valentine's Day
    •   Easter

     

    image

    ON DECK

    These candies will be reviewed shortly:

    • Brach’s Caramel Macchiato Candy Corn

    • 10 Candies that Shouldn’t Be So Disappointing

    • Orgran Molasses Licorice

    • Rogue Chocolatier

    • Hachez Braune Blatter (Chocolate Leaves)

     

     

    image