Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Halloween Gummy Snapshot: Haribo S'witches' Brew Gummies

Flying bats, witches in pointy caps, and pumpkins
 constitute a spooky and delightful Halloween gummy mix
 by Haribo called S'witches' Brew.  

Monday, September 17, 2018

Brach's Maple Candy Corn

I am a great advocate of candy corn and maple is my number one favorite flavor--better than chocolate, better than anything. Brach's Maple Candy Corn should be my jam. But something's off. The artificial maple flavoring leans toward buttery which doesn't blend well with the honey base. The flavors never blend. Is this an innate problem to maple candy corn or is it just an issue with this maple flavoring? I would love to find out.

Score (maple candy corn in theory): 5
Score (this attempt at maple candy corn): 2

Friday, September 14, 2018

Salon de Look Ichigo Pancake Chocolates

The flavor of pancakes and strawberry syrup in a one-bite chocolate? I love this kind of Willy Wonka magic! Straight from Japan, Salon de Look Ichigo Pancake chocolates present a great fantasy of reconstituted foods that are delicious. In actuality, it's not a bad bonbon but the reality certainly doesn't fit the fantasy. I would never guess that the bite was supposed to taste like pancakes and strawberry syrup. There's a nice layer of strawberry jelly and then a creamy layer that tastes like vanilla with a tiny mini hint of wheat. Weird. There's nothing familiar that can be compared. They're worth a try but not that compelling after the first few bites.

Score (fantasy chocolate creations): 5
Score (reality of fantasy): 2
Score (packaging): 4
Score (current need for pancakes): 5

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Monday, September 10, 2018

Welcome, Autumn: Bring on the Candy

Until the day after Labor Day, I put on blinders to any Autumnal or Halloween-themed candy. There's plenty of time for that. Each year that September day finally arrives when I allow myself to focus in on those loaded seasonal candy shelves and the first choice is always the same: Brach's Mellow Creme Pumpkins, the hardier cousin of the brand's traditional candy corn. Note the bad photograph above. The bag never makes it home intact. I love those little sugar bombs, and consume an embarrassing number of them in a frenzy. There's nothing better. I'm a hard-core fan. Inevitably I wake up the next morning feeling vaguely sick and strongly regretful and vow to reinstate moderation for the rest of the Halloween Candy Season. Love or hate these classic Fall sweets, their arrival announces the oncoming wave of seasonal candy. Get ready.

Friday, September 7, 2018

Japanese Sweets: Xylish Sugar Free Fruits Assortment Gum

Like an elegant, sugarless version of classic FruitStripe gum, Xylish Fruits Assort offers six tasty flavors in one small pack. They're all pretty tasty--not a bad one in the bunch--with a special shoutout to the peach and lemon flavors as especially delicious. I wish these were stocked more regularly in the US!

Score: 4

Monday, September 3, 2018

Never Liked Watermelon Candy Until Now: Kabaya Watermelon Gummy

I have never met an artificial watermelon sweet that I enjoyed. I cannot find any resemblance between that nuanced flavor of a real watermelon and the chemical creation known as "watermelon flavor". These Kabaya Watermelon Candy gummies from Japan taste like watermelon! I didn't even know it was possible! They're fantastic, refreshing, evocative of the juiciest crisp watermelon on the hottest day of the year. This could change everything.

Score (flavor innovation--didn't think it could be done): 5
Score (packaging): 5

Friday, August 31, 2018

Extreme Sour Chewy Sweetarts

Chewy SweeTarts are totally my jam and always have been. Yes, they've got the sweet and the tart mixing nicely, but the best part is how the consistency changes as you chew, breaking down to the individual sugar crystals. There's no other candy that dissolves quite like a Chewy SweeTart. Here's an example of the company taking a good thing and pushing it too far. Whereas I enjoyed the sweet/tart balance of the original, here one's mouth is instantly searing and the flavor is entirely lost. I don't mind super sour stuff, but in this case, the product was made less delicious because of it.

Score (too much xtreme sourness): 2
Score (don't mess up a classic): 2
Score (that great chewy SweeTarts dissolve): 4

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Senjaku Happy Nikukyu Peach Gummy Puppy Paws

Happy Nikukyu, indeed! Who can resist these sweetly rendered, double-layer gummies that look so perfectly like my pup's paw. Rather than going for a stylized paw, this is a thoughtful reproduction. I love it! Plus the peach flavor is really juicy and robust.

I wonder if Senjaku makes gummy kitten paws....

Score (packaging): 4
Score (realism of puppy paws): 5
Score (flavor): 3 (it's good but it's still a gummy)

Friday, August 24, 2018

Twizzlers Sour Mini Twists

New Twizzlers Sour Mini Twists are surprisingly compelling. The sweet cream filling tastes like bland nothingness, but functions to mellow out the cherry, green apple, lemon, and blue raspberry flavors and sour sugar coating. The consistency is really soft and the short length makes them so easy eat one after the other. Although I haven't found myself thinking about that as much as other candies, the bag disappeared really quickly.

Score: 3(+)