Monday, June 18, 2018

Juicy Fruit Starburst Fruit Punch Sugarfree Gum

I love that classic Hawaiian Punch (TM) flavor and think that my expectations for that flavor contained within a piece of Juicy Fruit sugarfree gum were perhaps misplaced. The actual Fruit Punch flavor reaches more for the tropical coconut pineapple spectrum than that general "juicy red" flavor arena. Despite misplaced expectations, this Starburst sugarfree Fruit Punch gum was tasty--it just didn't taste like the original Starburst Fruit Punch flavor.

Score (flavorful sugarfree gum): 3+
Score (accuracy of reproduction of Starburst Fruit Punch flavor): 2

Friday, June 15, 2018

Travel Snapshot: Jiraporn Solar Dried Bananas Dipped in Chocolate

These Jiraporn Solar Dried Chocolate-Dipped Bananas are such a great sweet snack. I love banana chips but have never had dried or dehydrated bananas. They're full of flavor but chewy, condense. Dipped in chocolate they're such a filling and energizing treat. Our household went through the entire box in no time. Thanks, Sipat and Will!

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Gummy Snapshot: Trolli Deadpool 2 Sour Brite Tiny Hands Gummies

Without having seen Deadpool 1 or 2, I'm missing the jokes with 7 Select's new Trolli Sour Brite Tiny Hands Gummies. I find the miniature hands delightful nonetheless--there's something quite refreshing about holding a fistful of colorful mini hands in one's own palm. The flavors are great, too--a pinapple-mango duo, blueberry-lime, and strawberry-berry punch. A special shout-out for a really nice pineapple flavor and a great zesty lime. I could do without the mango, but that's more of a personal bias. Could any readers explain the meaning of "Made with maximum effort and no pickles!!!" please?

Score (a better than usual gummy experience): 3+

Monday, June 11, 2018

Christopher's Good News Bar

A classic from the 1930's and now created at Adams-Brooks, Christopher's Good News chocolate bar is a delicious combination of peanut chunks and rice krispies suspended in a thick slab of caramel, all covered in milk chocolate. Strangely, the label doesn't mention the crisped rice. Mainly, it's all an excuse to eat big mouthfuls of rich caramel with just enough crunch from the peanuts and rice to add a little substance to each bite. So far I have only seen these classic bars in specialty shops like Dylan's Candy Bar but I hope that distribution will spread.

Score (flavor): 4
Score (accuracy of packaging description): 2

Friday, June 8, 2018

Sugarfree Arctic Candy: Mountain Berries


Crafted in Norway, Arctic Candy constitutes beautifully packaged sugarfree hard candies in the flavors of exotic berries of the Arctic Circle. Blueberry, Cloudberry, Crowberry and Mountain Cranberry are all delicious, vibrant, bright flavors. These don't taste sugar-free. Blueberry and Cranberry are the flavors one might expect, with a special shoutout to the Cranberry as the most delicious flavor, not to mention a beautiful pink hue. Cloudberry has a mellow, almost melon-like taste. Crowberry is similar to a Cassis. These are elegant and so tasty and I hope they get distribution in the United States. Thanks to my Mom for bringing these home from her travels!

Score (packaging): 4
Score (hard candy flavors): 4
Score (sugar-free flavors): 5

x\blueberry cloudberry crowberrymountain cranberry

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Gummy Snapshot: M&S Percy Pig Soft Gums

They're awfully cute, but neutral in flavor (a bland "berry"). Marks & Spencer (M&S) has such an incredibly inventive and vast line of gummies, created in Germany for the British Market. I couldn't resist these classics, on shelves since 1992.

Monday, June 4, 2018

Ooh La La, More French Licorice! Lutti O'tablo!

Lutti O'tablo is such an incredibly addictive candy--a new favorite in my great pantheon on licorice treats! The French licorice sweets are called O'tablo--chalkboard--because the crunchy candy coating makes them resemble pieces of chalk. Inside the robust, flavorful licorice is a creamy center to lighten up the dense flavorful bite. It's wonderful. I kept scooping up handfuls despite myself every time I neared the candy cabinet. I couldn't stop until the entire bag was gone. Where can I procure these delights in the United States? If any readers know of a purveyor, please let me know in the comments!

Score (licorice flavor): 4
Score (licorice candy combo): 4
Score (can't stop won't stop addictive factor): 5

Friday, June 1, 2018

Milka Collage Fudge Chocolate Bar


Polish candy bar company, Milka, makes some really cool chocolate bars. Their Collage Fudge bar, which incorporates caramel chunks and biscuit bits into individual pots of thick milk chocolate fudge. There's just too much going on, and the whole recipe never coheres. It looks messy, too, making it hard to break into individual servings. Also, the fudge is rather dry and I feel like a plain milk chocolate base would have worked better. 

Score (messy appearance): 2
Score (dry fudge): 2

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Gummy Snapshot: Haribo World Mix

Haribo World Mix is a cacophony of the Haribo gummy lines all mixed into one bad. There's nothing new or rare, just the absence of theme, which is somewhat freeing. Different consistencies, types of gummy, and flavor profiles, alligators, twin cherries, flowers, cola / soda bottles, it's all in there. Sometimes I need the guidance of a thematic gummy mix but once in a while it's nice to let it all hang out.

Monday, May 28, 2018

Travel Snapshot: Swikar Caramelos Artesanales, Cartagena, Colombia

Last week obsessivesweets travelled to Oaxaca due to traveling friends' kindness. This week, we may feast upon Swikar caramelos artesanales fresh from Cartagena, Colombia for the same reason! It's obvious from the outset that these small hand-crafted sugar jewels (approximately the size of a pencil eraser) are something special. Amazingly, the robust flavors match the extravagant visuals, with a special shout-out especially to the grapefruit and coconut flavors. Thanks, Alex and Lori!

Friday, May 25, 2018

French Candy that Doubles as Lip Gloss: Tetes Brulees Star Effet Rose a Levres

There's a lot going on in French novelty candy Tetes Brulees (translating to Burnt Heads) Star Rose. First you have small raspberry hard candies with a sour powder core (translating to "acid filling"). Unlike the rest of the candy line, the Star Rose candies are also coated with a rather sparkly pink dye that coats the lips like a shiny lip gloss. It does actually work and I admired my new dual functioning hard candy / makeup discovery. Only hitch, the lips remain so sticky with sugar. The pretty effect lasted about 20 seconds before getting licked off. That said, I know a lot of little kids (and grown-ups) who would enjoy trying these out. Good thing I brought a big bag of them back from France!

Score (sugar and makeup both): 4
Score (pretty lips): 4
Score (sticky lips): 2
Score (innovation): 4

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

M&S Foam Lobsters

These raspberry and banana flavored Foam Lobsters by British retailer Marks & Spencer (M&S) are strangely compelling. Their structured sugar foam consistency instantly breaks down into flavored sugar granules on the tongue, almost like a condensed chunk of cotton candy. They're super sweet and incredibly artificial but they're also fun, not to mention awfully cute. A special lobster shout-out to my friend, Tara!

Score: 3

Monday, May 21, 2018

Travel Snapshot: Chocolate de la Villa Real, Oaxaca, Mexico

It's so exciting when friends go traveling and bring back far-reaching flavors. Thanks to Ben, I have an infusion of one of my favorite flavors in the world, traditional hot cocoa from Oaxaca, Mexico. There's nothing quite like it--simple ground cocoa, cinnamon, vanilla bean, ground almonds ground into a paste and modeled into round tablets. You melt a tablet into warming milk, and then then blend the concoction with a whisk or in a blender to create a vaguely spicy, flavorful and frothing traditional treat. This is an especially good batch from one of the best purveyors in the city, Chocolate de la Villa Real. I can't stop whipping up comforting mugs of the stuff and each sip transports me straight back to the Zocalo. Thanks, Ben!

Friday, May 18, 2018

French Licorice: Haribo Car en Sac

Imagine classic licorice Good n Plenty candies. This time, though, picture the shells more colorful and a little crispier, and the licorice more robust in flavor, all shrunk to a smaller size. You're picturing Haribo Car en Sac, a product from France. I enjoy Good n Plenty but I love Car en Sac and wish more distributors in NYC carried these small bags. As the motto says, "Haribo, c'est beau la vie".

Score: 4