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)

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Easter Candy Indulgence: Kit Kat Bunny Ears

I love the simple bunny stamp on the chocolate exterior of the Kit Kat Bunny Ears bar. It's a unique and elegant design that doesn't mess with the original candy but gives the bar a super festive face-lift for the Easter holiday.

Score: 4

Monday, March 17, 2014

Easter Candy: Skittles Easter Egg

Nothing new here in terms of Skittles innovation, but super cute packaging for this year's Easter basket!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Springtime Marzipan Sheep, Fortunato Brothers Bakery, Brooklyn

Exquisite marzipan sheep from Fortunato Brothers Bakery.

Variations on Perfection: Cadbury White Mini Eggs

Is there any candy more perfect than the classic Cadbury Mini Egg? The answer, to my mind, is a resounding no (click here to read ecstatic past reviews). I'm so pleased that Cadbury has branched out this holiday season and added White and Dark Chocolate Mini Eggs to the company's Easter roster. I can't wait to taste-test the dark chocolate but have not found them yet in the market. The White Mini Eggs, however, are great! (Note that Cadbury takes an honest tact in labeling the product as "White Candy"- as white chocolate is technically not chocolate). As with the recent release of white chocolate-based m&m products, I find the overarching flavor too sweet to consume more than a few White Mini Eggs at a time. Whereas I can easily devour a bag of classic Mini Eggs without noticing, the White Mini Eggs force a bit of portion control. They're definitely worth a taste (or two. Or ten).

Score: 4

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Wrigley's Extra Dessert Delights Rainbow Sherbet Sugarfree Gum

You may call me Violet Beauregarde, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory's "girl who chews gum all day." It's not a point of pride but it's true. But this fact is now solidified by the existence of The Best Gum Ever! This Wrigley's Extra Dessert Delights Rainbow Sherbet Sugarfree Gum is a mini miracle in your mouth. It tastes uncannily like a mouth full of rainbow sherbet. It's refreshing, unique, intriguing, exhilarating, and fun. Plus it's sugarfree (and the bonus is you would never guess it). The entire Dessert Delights line of gum is incredibly good and I haven't sampled a bad flavor yet. This Rainbow Sherbet gum, though, is a step above any other. Everyone I've shared the gum with loves it, too.

Score (Best Gum Ever): 5

Limited Edition Strawberry Creme Flavored Marshmallow Peeps

Whereas Orange Creme Peeps offer a pleasurable pop of Creamsicle flavor, the new Strawberry Creme Peeps taste overwhelmingly of chemical strawberry- a flavor profile that resembles flouride treatment at the dentist more than an actual strawberry. I'm not asking for realism in a Peep- simply a flavor that highlights the lovely, fluffy marshmallow base. These pink freckled chicks are a great addition to Peeps dioramas and art projects, though!

Score: 2

Note: Now we come to the real reason for the creation of this obsessivesweets blog. I only realized after writing this review that I have consumed and reviewed Strawberry Creme Peeps twice before. And each time gave them the same disappointed score of 2. To read the past two reviews, click here

Monday, March 3, 2014

Mega m&m's - Triple the Chocolate!

I'm aware that tripling the size of an m&m shouldn't change the taste of the classic candy. It does, though. Strangely, the vaguely fruity taste of the shell is more prevalent in each bite. And a mysteriously fruity shell taste reminds me of Smarties, the British version of m&m's- not bad, but also not the distinct m&m flavor. Is this anomaly the result of a thicker shell to support all that chocolate? Has the ratio of shell-to-chocolate changed? And can it really make a noticeable difference? Whatever the reason, these mega m&m's simply don't taste as good to me as the classic.

Score: 3