Friday, April 11, 2014

Easter Treats: Maltesers MaltEaster Chocolate Bunny

Maltesers constitute the British equivalent of Whoppers malted milk balls. Though I enjoy both brands and almost anything with malt flavoring, Maltesers are the superior product. The chocolate is milkier and meltier, and the malt has a warmer flavor and a less dense consistency. For Easter, Maltesers created this charming two-bite bunny filled with an incredible, light-as-air malted cream with tiny chunks of crunchy malt ball suspended throughout. I've never experienced a malted cream filling before and it's brilliant. Talk about festive for the Easter Holiday! I wish Maltesers would create a malted cream candy for year-round! Thanks, Evan!

Score: 5

Norwegian Easter Candy: Nidar Paske Marsipan Kolibriegg

I love marzipan so much. In almost every form. As a child I thought there was nothing worse, but over the years it's grown on me to the point where it ranks as a truly favorite treat. (See past marzipan posts here). The Norwegian Nidar brand has been creating Easter marzipan from the same recipe since 1915. There's good reason: you can't improve on perfection! This Easter Egg looks a touch larger than your average Russell Stover Egg, but it weighs in at about three times heavier. It's a hefty little clump of deliciouness. The outer chocolate layer with sprinkles basically just facilitates the cohesion of the marzipan but does add a nice rich flavor. At base, though, there's a minimal amount of chocolate per marzipan-packed bite. The marzipan itself is chewy, thick, not-too-sweet, and melts in your mouth. I wish these goodies were sold in my area as I'd stock up in bulk. If you can get your hands on a Nidar Paske Marsipan Kolibriegg, buy 10! Thanks, Ginny!

Score: 5

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Sugarless Easter Gum: Limited Edition Jelly Bean Flavored Trident Layers Gum

What a great idea to release a Jelly Bean flavored Sugar Free Gum for Easter! It's certainly a new idea in an over-saturated field of Easter sweets. Unfortunately, the limited edition Trident Layers gum in Jelly Bean flavor does not resemble the taste of a jelly bean whatsoever. Nor does it simply taste good. It appears to consist of a central layer of strong green apple sandwiched between two thinner layers of a subtle pineapple-coconut-bubble gum. The combination is not appealing- green apple with a hint of suntan lotion? Great idea, but what a disappointing result.

Score: 2

Friday, April 4, 2014

Easter Candy: Limited Edition Vanilla Creme Flavored Marshmallow

Wow, infusing an original Peep with vanilla makes a world of difference. These Limited Edition Vanilla Creme Peeps aren't all that different than the classic except for the infusion of vanilla essence as well as an exterior sprinkling of colorful confetti. By far these are the tastiest (and prettiest) of the new Creme flavored Peeps (previously explored here and here).

Score: 4 

An Embarrassment of Riches; or, What I Ate at Work Today

I'm so lucky to work with colleagues who travel with frequency and then feel compelled to bring back sweets to share from these exotic journeys. Example: today I have tasted decadent Michel Cluizel chocolates of multiple origins, hand-crafted chocolate bars embedded with fresh pistachios from Texas, Cheri's Desert Harvest Pricky Pear Cactus Jellies, Kilwins Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Tuttles, as well as Angelina Crispy Brittany Crepes from Paris. These treats were entirely consumed within three hours and I respect and appreciate that level of department-wide enthusiasm. Last week we were awash in Stoopwafels. Who knows what next week will bring, and I can't wait to find out. Thank you, colleagues! I am swept away in esoteric sweets of many lands!

Friday, March 28, 2014

Cake in Candy Form: Birthday Cake m&m's

Fresh from the overwhelming Pumpkin Pie/ Pumpkin Spice trend of late 2013 (click here to spark your memory), we've got a new flavor taking over the candy aisle, one I can get behind with a lot more enthusiasm: Cake Madness. Birthday cake, wedding cake, carrot cake, red velvet cake flavors and on and on. And somehow the artificial blend of chemicals that create the illusion of cake are able to represent the real stuff with incredible accuracy. At times with vaguely alarming accuracy. I've been anticipating the new Birthday Cake m&m's with great enthusiasm and they don't disappoint. Like an everlasting gobstopper, they begin as one flavor and then transform into another. Magic! You bite into one of these m&m's (a bit larger than the classic) and it tastes like an original perfect milk chocolate m&m. However, as you're chewing and the chocolate begins to melt, the essence of vanilla and butter and chocolate frosting emerge and linger well after the m&m has disappeared. They truly taste like chocolate cake with vanilla frosting. Amazing. I love them and hope they stick around for a good while.

Score: 5

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Easter Jelly Beans: Jelly Belly Kids Mix

It's great that Jelly Belly has started distributing all of these mini boxes of themed jelly bean mixes (see eight previous mixes reviewed here). They offer fans a fun sampling without having to invest very much money or emotion. This Kids Mix isn't bad but it's also not one of the better mixes I've encountered. Usually there's a sense of both color and flavor continuity. Because it's geared to kids, though, the Kids Mix is simply an mash-up of bright colors and consists of the more overt, unsubtle flavors in the Jelly Belly line. Perhaps kids are more excited to match up combinations like Toasted Marshmallow with Cotton Candy, or Buttered Popcorn with Chocolate Pudding. I'll stick with the thematic Jelly Belly mixes that aren't quite so challenging to the taste-buds.

Score: 3

Friday, March 21, 2014

Retro Candy and Sweet Memories: Nancy Adams 1980's Nostalgic Candy Mix

Opening this box of Nancy Adams 1980's Nostalgic Candy is tantamount to a time machine into the sweets of my childhood. Atomic Fireballs, Jawbreakers, Wonka Giant Chewy Sweetarts (those were a big deal when they arrived on the market), Laffy Taffy, Hubba Bubba Bubble Tap, Ring Pops, and then my very favorite of all, the candy that lead obsessivesweets down a sugary path to no return, Pixy Stix!! (Remember those foot-long mega Pixy Stix? And jumping off the walls after mainlining the entire thing? Then feeling vile as the sugar crash set it? Oh I loved those mega massive foot-long Pixy Stix!). Thanks, Matt, for finding this lens into candy history and personal nostalgia. It's refreshing to rediscover one's roots.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Wow: Cadbury Royal Dark Mini Eggs

It's tough for a company in the aftermath of launching the perfect candy. Where can they go but down from perfection? This is uniquely not the case, however, for Cadbury Mini Eggs. First they released the Milk Chocolate Mini Eggs- the candy ideal. This year Cadbury branched out by inventing both White and Royal Dark Mini Eggs. The White Mini Eggs are substantive and super tasty, albeit a bit sweet overall. The Royal Dark Mini Eggs rival the originals- an elegant color scheme on the crunchy outer shells that are filled with a compulsively addictive dark chocolate. Cadbury's Royal Dark tastes similar to the semi-sweet Nestle Tollhouse chocolate chips frequently baked into chocolate chip cookies. The dark chocolate isn't bittersweet, it's just milk chocolate with a slightly darker turn. These mini eggs are unspeakably fantastic resulting in the large bag disappeared all-too-quickly. Ongoing, I'll still buy the milk chocolate variety and will simply have to stock up on two flavors per year. These Royal Dark Mini Eggs are definitely something special.

Score: 5 (6 if possible)