Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Gummy Snapshot: Gummy Burger


Purple Berry Gummy Hamburger

Monday, July 24, 2017

Trader Joe's Chocolate Covered Sea Salt Butterscotch Caramels





I'm wild for caramel but even more passionate about butterscotch. The difference is minimal--apparently caramel is made with white sugar while butterscotch uses brown sugar--but to me butterscotch attains perfection with that small twist in the simple recipe. So my question is why is there so much more caramel than butterscotch on the market? Thank you to Trader Joe's for creating their Chocolate Covered Sea Salt Butterscotch Caramels. They're so simple but compelling. I can't stop eating them. I'm planning trips to Trader Joe's simply to pick up more. My only wish is that Trader Joe's sold the candy in individual serving bags, too.

Score: 5

Friday, July 21, 2017

Reese's Crunchy Cookie Peanut Butter Cups


The idea behind Reese's Crunchy Cookie Peanut Butter Cups is a strong one--take America's greatest candy and sprinkle crunchy chocolate Oreo-like cookie crumbles throughout. The taste of the chocolate is drowned out by the rest of the peanut butter cup but there is a newly distinct light-as-air crunch added into every bite. But subjectively I just don't like any lumps or crunchies in my peanut butter. The smoother the better to my particular palette. These new Reese's are definitely worth a taste-test, but I am personally returning promptly to the classic Reese's.

Score (factoring personal anti-crunchy peanut butter bias): 2
Score (attempting to put personal bias aside in the name of objectivity): 3
Score (dreaming of a classic Reese's Peanut Butter Cup containing the smoothest of peanut butters): 5

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

New Favorite Gummy: Project 7 Gourmet Gummies Party Mix



Gummies can be pretty and they can be imaginative and whimsical, but they rarely taste very good to me. However, I have now met my new favorite gummy candy, the Party Mix from Project 7. The fact that the candies are made with organic sweeteners is a bonus. Alright, the birthday cake flavor doesn't really resemble birthday cake all that much but it is tasty nonetheless. The rainbow ice and front porch lemonade flavors are so juicy and realistic and and refreshing. I hope that Project 7 continues to come out with new innovative gummy flavors.

Score (overall): 4
Score (flavor compared with all other gummies): 5

Monday, July 17, 2017

Tropical Sour Patch Kids


New Tropical Sour Patch Kids are hit-and-miss. The Pineapple flavor is innovative and delicious. Tropical Twist is juicy fun, too. The Passion Fruit, though, is so off. It tastes vaguely like Cassis, which is good if you like that sort of flavor--certainly not a match with the named flavor. Paradise Punch is fine, but lacks the robust red flavor one might expect. The new flavors are fun to taste-test but I'm returning to the original Sour Patch Kids from now on.

Score: 2

Friday, July 14, 2017

Dylan's Candy Bar Candy Cafe Bites: Salted Caramel Apple Pie


The idea behind Dylan's Candy Cafe Bites is really clever--offer a two-bite version of a wide array of candy/cake/pie classics, and people can try a little bit of everything without spending a fortune. Having only worked through five or six of the offerings, I can confidently say that some are some hits and some miss the mark. This Salted Caramel Apple Pie Candy Cafe Bite is one of the better options tested. Sweet Belgian milk chocolate barely contains oozing caramel bursting from the center. The caramel is infused with a strong apple flavor reminiscent of a Green Apple Jolly Rancher. The salt offsets all of the sweet to bring out the more robust flavors of the caramel. The overall bite is still a little too sweet for my preference, but it's a fun unique morsel to taste-test.

You can order the Cafe Bites online (here) or visit Dylan's Candy Bar to create your own mix of flavors.

Score: 3

Monday, July 10, 2017

Rosewater and Chocolate: Cadbury Turkish Dairy Milk


After a long history of disliking even the finest gourmet rosewater-infused Turkish Delight, obsessivesweets cannot offer an objective review of Cadbury Turkish Dairy Milk. It would't be fair, like someone who loathes all forms of coconut being offered a Mounds Bar. Cadbury Dairy Milk is always a delight. If you might like yours infused with a layer of super floral rosewater jelly, this might be the bar for you.



Friday, July 7, 2017

Stride Sugar Free Sour Patch Kids Extreme Blue Raspberry Gum



Sour Patch Kids Gummies transfer so naturally to Sour Patch Kids Gum. It's a match made in heaven. And it's even sugar free, a nice bonus. The Blue Raspberry simply can't match the flavor deliciousness of Red Berry (read that review here) but it's a good go-to sugar-free gum, nonetheless.

Score: 3

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Celebrating the Fourth of July with Mike and Ike Patriotic Mix



 Cherry Pie, Vanilla Ice Cream, and Blueberry Cobbler--three fantastic new flavors that comprise Mike and Ike's Patriotic Mix for the 4th of July holiday. On its own the Vanilla Ice Cream is a little bit bland, but it complements the Cherry Pie and Blueberry Cobbler so beautifully. This is a great mix and I wish we could experience these red, white, and blue flavors year-round.

Score: 4

Monday, July 3, 2017

Reese's Dark

Were my expectations too high? Reese's Peanut Butter Cups are my very favorite go-to mass-marketed candy. I prefer dark chocolate to milk chocolate, so I had dreamed of the shift to a dark chocolate Reese's Peanut Butter Cup for a lifetime. I had guessed that the dark chocolate would provide more of a contrast to the sweet peanut butter, but I just didn't taste that much of a difference. With each bite, I blamed myself for not tasting something new, something exciting, the combination I had been awaiting. I think Reese's needs to use a darker chocolate here with less sugar. I want to taste the savory notes of the peanut butter blending with all of that sugar. The Reese's Dark is still absolutely delicious but it could have been so much more.

Score (flavor): 4
Score (lost potential): 2

Friday, June 30, 2017

Taste of Florida: Twizzlers Orange Cream Pop Filled Twists



The soft squishy consistency of Twizzlers Filled Twists is just right, making it so easy to consume a large quantity without a second thought. The orange flavored twists here are also quite good, heavy on the sweet artificial orange without any notes of sour citrus. The filling, though, is somewhat troubling. Admittedly it does reproduce that thin milky center of a Creamsicle accurately. However, I would prefer something a bit creamier with more vanilla. There's something really bland and off-putting about this Cream Pop center. Twizzlers Orange Cream Pop Filled Twists are worth a try, but probably not deserving of a return visit.

Score: 3

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Lotte Glamatic Cherry Blossom Chewing Gum




The packaging for Glamatic Cherry Blossom gum by Japanese candy producer, Lotte, is so elegant and alluring. The sugar-free gum (sweetened with xylitol) does not aim to please the chewer flavor-wise. Without being told I might guess at a combination of tutti frutti and Ivory soap. Instead, this gum aims to please those surrounding the chewer. It's a really powerful breath-freshener. I can't say I would reach for Glamatic Cherry Blossom as my go-to gum, but under the right circumstances (say, at the movies after a garlic-heavy dinner or before making a presentation at work), it's a really effective tool.

Score (breath-freshening): 5
Score (flavor fun): 2
Score (packaging): 4

Monday, June 26, 2017

"Taste of Hawaii": Hershey's Coconut Almond Kisses



In Hershey's "Taste of America" Campaign, I'll admit that the Taste of Hawaii Coconut Almond Kisses are properly tropical in flavor. The coconut infused white chocolate hides a central almond that ground the flavor and adds a little crunch to each bite. Coconut fans will most likely swoon. It is a very intense artificial coconut flavor, mixed with white chocolate, so definitely only meant for big coconut fans. I wish the coconut was a little more subtle, a little more natural in flavor. I want to bite into these Kisses and picture the tropics, not a bottle of Hawaiian Tropic suntan lotion.

Score (for coconut fans): 3
Score (for everyone else): 2

Friday, June 23, 2017

Koeze Company Cream-Nuts Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Clusters (since 1910!)


The Koeze Company is at base a peanut butter company, and so their Cream-Nuts Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Clusters really celebrates the peanut butter center. I really like it that way. The pecans and milk chocolate nicely cohere and blend with the peanut butter, but they are clearly just solid support players in this mix. The peanut butter is smooth and creamy and not too sweet. Often sugar masks the warm taste of peanuts but Koeze gets it right. If you can find some Cream-Nuts, treat yourself! Thanks Mark!

Score: 4

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Snoopy Branded Green Apple Pocky


As a lifelong Snoopy fan, I'm automatically excited about Green Apple Pocky. The packaging is perfect Snoopy sweetness. Although I'm wondering if the text explains the presence of this mysterious cat character alluded to on the front of the box and portrayed on the back? It's a very subjective flavor. The green apple frosting tastes like a creamy Green Apple Jolly Rancher. I just don't enjoy that flavor, especially combined with a cookie stick. If you enjoy the Green Apple hard candy you will be delighted with this Snoopy-branded option.

Score (packaging): 4
Score (enjoyment of flavor): 2

To read past Pocky reviews, click HERE.  

Monday, June 19, 2017

Reese's Mini Sticks



Reese's Sticks are the Reese's brand entry into the already saturated wafer bar market. The key is that Reese's Sticks are layered with rich and creamy Reese's peanut butter and it's a fantastic combination. If you're in the mood for a peanut butter cup but that sounds too heavy or substantial, opt for a Reese's Stick--it will do perfectly. Unfortunately, whereas Reese's Sticks come in a wrapped package, Reese's has also released unwrapped Mini Sticks in a bag. This is such a basic mistake. Even in cool weather, the delicate wafer bars immediately start melting and adhering to one another not to mention getting crushed and crumbled. Lesson to Reese's: keep these darlings safe and individually wrapped as it's the only way they survive distribution.

Score (Reese's Sticks): 5
Score (Reese's Mini Sticks in a Bag): 3



Wafer Bars Past:
Bingo Serenata Double (Greece) 
Bocadin Wafer Bar (Mexico)
Johnny Krocker Milk Wafer Bar (Ukraine)
Karin Blume Orange Mille Feuille Chocolate Bar (Japan) 
Kit Kat Caramel (United States)
Kit Kat Cheesecake (Japan) 
Kit Kat Chunky Mint (England)
Kit Kat Cookies & Cream (United States)

Kit Kat Darkness (Dark Chocolate)(United States)
Kit Kat Halloween (White Chocolate) Edition (United States)  
Kit Kat Milk Coffee (Japan)
Kit Kat Muscat of Alexandria (Grape)(Japan)  
Kit Kat Orange (United States) 

Kit Kat Red Velvet (United States) 
Kit Kat Royal Milk Tea (Japan)

Kit Kat Triple Chocolate (United States) 
Mama Mia Wafer Bar (Poland) 
Manner Original Neapolitan Wafers (Vienna) 
Milka GoFree Chocolate Wafer Bar (Turkey)

Milky Way Ameo Bar (Poland)
Nestle Crunch Girl Scout Cookie Wafer Bar (United States)
Nestle Nesquik Wafer Bar (Turkey)

Nestle Tin Larin Wafer Bar (Mexico)  
Tiki Gold Wafer Bar (Trinidad/ Tobago)
Tunnock's Caramel Wafer Biscuit (Scotland)
Ulker Chocolate Wafer Bar (Turkey)
Ulker Cokonat (Turkey)

Ulker Dido Wafer Fingers (Turkey)

Friday, June 16, 2017

Tirol Fried Banana Chocolate Squares from Japan


Oh my, this whole Tirol chocolate scene is new to me but has been flourishing in Japan since 1962. It's a vast line of unique chocolate flavors, each one delivered in a one-bite cube wrapped in stand-out packaging, and available for a low price. My first experience with Tirol was a Fried Banana White Chocolate cube. The wrapper is so colorful with an image of sliced bananas and colorful flowers. The cube, white chocolate, is stamped with a whimsical house. Why? Who knows, but it's a cute surprise. By this point in the process, I was completely won over. The flavor of banana in the bite is delicious and surprisingly non-artificial (unlike most banana flavored candy). Mixed with light crunchy banana chips, the bite tastes a little bit like a very sweet banana granola bar. The white chocolate casing is not too delicious--I'd say that's the one disappointment of the sweet. It's waxy and doesn't melt in the mouth, and the sugar masks the chocolate flavor. Overall, these are a fun bite but I probably wouldn't return to eat more with any compulsion. That said, I am so excited to find new Tirol flavors to taste-test. A whole new world to explore!

Score (visuals): 5
Score (unique flavor innovation): 5
Score (waxy white chocolate): 2

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Via Atlas Obscura: Communal Candy Desk in United States Senate

Image via Atlas Obscura 

Who knew? There is one designated desk in the United States Senate that functions as a communal candy desk for all Senators. The desk resides in the Republican side of the chamber, but Democrats share equally in the stashed sweets. 

To read the full article on Atlas Obscura, click HERE

Monday, June 12, 2017

New Nuts: Hazelnut Snickers



Snickers with Hazelnut is a really nice idea, especially these days when hazelnuts reign supreme as the go-to candy nut. That said, the combination doesn't work for me. Hazelnuts have an earthier, more subtle flavor compared with peanuts, and unfortunately the delicate hazelnuts get lost in the mix of a Snicker's Bar. They are also a bit less crunchy, and thus less satisfying than peanuts. I'm thrilled I got a chance to try the combo, but alas, it's just not as delicious as the original. 

Score (concept): 4
Score (in actuality): 2

Friday, June 9, 2017

Taste of California Strawberry KitKat



(A cat's paw slips into the frame. Everyone wants a KitKat!)


The "Taste of America" campaign is a little confusing because the selections don't really match the states. Strawberry Kit Kat, the "taste of California" is actually one of the better connections of flavor to location. The BBQ Payday is possibly appropriate but sounds so gross. Honey Roasted Reese's Peanut Butter Cups sound great--but is Georgia the honey state? I'm so curious what might be released for Alaska. Or North Dakota. Or Minnesota. The Strawberry KitKat is tasty--light, crispy, fresh, and not too artificial. Strawberry chocolate just isn't a personal preference. It tastes identical to Strawberry Quik. If you're a fan, you will love these.

Score (accurate strawberry milk flavor): 4
Score (personal and biased feelings about flavor): 2



Wafer Bars Past:
Bingo Serenata Double (Greece) 
Bocadin Wafer Bar (Mexico)
Johnny Krocker Milk Wafer Bar (Ukraine)
Karin Blume Orange Mille Feuille Chocolate Bar (Japan) 
Kit Kat Caramel (United States)
Kit Kat Cheesecake (Japan) 
Kit Kat Chunky Mint (England)
Kit Kat Cookies & Cream (United States)

Kit Kat Darkness (Dark Chocolate)(United States)
Kit Kat Halloween (White Chocolate) Edition (United States)  
Kit Kat Milk Coffee (Japan)
Kit Kat Muscat of Alexandria (Grape)(Japan)  
Kit Kat Orange (United States) 

Kit Kat Red Velvet (United States) 
Kit Kat Royal Milk Tea (Japan)

Kit Kat Triple Chocolate (United States) 
Mama Mia Wafer Bar (Poland) 
Manner Original Neapolitan Wafers (Vienna) 
Milka GoFree Chocolate Wafer Bar (Turkey)

Milky Way Ameo Wafer Rolls (Poland)
Nestle Crunch Girl Scout Cookie Wafer Bar (United States)
Nestle Nesquik Wafer Bar (Turkey)

Nestle Tin Larin Wafer Bar (Mexico)  
Tiki Gold Wafer Bar (Trinidad/ Tobago)
Tunnock's Caramel Wafer Biscuit (Scotland)
Ulker Chocolate Wafer Bar (Turkey)
Ulker Cokonat (Turkey)

Ulker Dido Wafer Fingers (Turkey)