Archive for the ‘Bulk Candy Reviews’ Category

I’m in Love With Mary Jane(s)

Wednesday, July 7th, 2010 by Becca Droz
This is a paper cut out advertisement for Mary Janes and one of the oldest candy advertisements in our collection!

This is a paper cut out advertisement for Mary Janes and one of the oldest candy advertisements in our collection!

Sharability: 10

Denture Danger: 10

Convenience: 10

Novelty: 10

Overall: 9

I’m in love with Mary Jane.
She’s my main thing.
She makes me feel alright.
She makes my heart sing.

This Mary Jane I am referring to could be Spiderman’s woman or a certain plant, but instead it is NECCO’s classic peanut buttery, molasses flavored, chewy rectangle.

It all began with Charles H. Miller and his three sons. The Millers started a small candy manufacturing business in Boston in 1884. The building in which this business blossomed from was Paul Revere’s house until 1800. (For those who haven’t been to history class any time in the last decade: In 1775 Paul Revere made the famous ride from Boston to Lexington to warn the people in the countryside that the British were coming.)

In 1914 after Charles had died and the Miller boys had taken full responsibility of the family business, the Mary Janes hit the market. The candy was named after their favorite aunt, Susan. Just kidding, her name was Mary Jane.

The Miller Company tried its best to create variations of the Mary Jane, but all paled in comparison to the original. The Miller Company tried its best to manufacture other popular candies, but again, they all paled in comparison to the Mary Jane. Eventually, after failed attempts at variety, Mary Jane was the only candy that the Miller Company produced.

NECCO was lucky to take control of the Mary Jane in 1990, as Mary Jane is a poster child of the New England Confectionary Company. Nostalgia blooms when we talk about our love for Mary Jane.

Sources:

http://www.stlyrics.com/lyrics/friday/maryjane.htm

Squirrel Nut Zippers Caramels’ Uniqueness Compels

Thursday, June 24th, 2010 by Becca Droz
Squirell Nut Zippers occupy a unique place in candy history as they are one of the older candies still available

Squirell Nut Zippers occupy a unique place in candy history as they are one of the older candies still available

Sharability: 9

Denture Danger:  8

Convenience: 10

Novelty: 9

Overall: 7

Squirrel Brands Salted Nut Company began in 1899. It changed hands and it changed locations, but the squirreliness never diminished. The company supplied chewy candies and salted and roasted peanuts to not only the general public of candy lovers, but also to the armed forces. In 2004 the Squirrel Nut Company took it’s last ownership change as it fell into the hands of NECCO.

The Squirrel Nut Caramel Candy is an individually wrapped rectangle of soft caramel with small pieces of peanuts mixed in for a slight crunch. The caramel is not as sticky as most caramels and thus does not annoyingly get stuck into the crevasses of your teeth.

Chocolate Squirrel caramel was the original flavor for the Squirrel Brands caramels. The caramels are a classic and are unique, and with that said, the candy need not be the tastiest candy in the land to be worthy of purchase.
Sources:

http://www.necco.com/OurBrands/AdditionalBrands.asp#BrandID15

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Squirrel_nut_caramel

Spearmint Leaves and Anise Bears: Flavors Removed From Their Natural Habitat

Thursday, May 27th, 2010 by Becca Droz
Anise Bears and Spearmint Leaves are beloved candy classics

Anise Bears and Spearmint Leaves are very popular chewy candies and this blog discusses the merits of each!

Sharability: 10

Denture Danger: 8

Convenience: 6

Novelty: 5

Overall: 7

These two sugar coated gummy candies each have their own distinct personality. The spearmint leaves are as green as the newest summertime grass and have the mojito flavor while the anise bears are brown and have the pungent licorice type flavor.

These two flavors are representatives of plants that grow from the ground. Anise, Pimpinella anisum, is a flowering plant that is native to the Southwest Asia and the Eastern Mediterranean region and the taste (as well exemplified in these large gummy bears) is similar to that of fennel, tarragon, and of course, licorice.

The spearmint leaves that dance around mojito glasses come from the Spearmint, Mentha spicata plant, native to Europe and Southwest Asia. It was first discovered in 1843 as it invaded the Great Lakes area.

These tastes are invasive to the plastic bag where you can buy them in bulk, but provide a taste that you can imagine is coming from their natural habitat.

Sources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anise

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mentha_spicata

For the Love of Mother Nature, We Bring You: Chocolate Earth Balls

Thursday, May 20th, 2010 by Becca Droz
Chocolate Earth Balls

Chocolate Earth Balls are a celebration of chocolate and the planet!

Sharability: 10

Denture Danger: 5

Convenience: 9

Novelty: 9

Overall: 9

 Although posted a bit late, in the spirit of Earth Day which falls in April,  these earth chocolate balls are just perfect as they are for everyday snacking.

But, you think to yourself, earth day has passed, thus so has my desire for these earth balls. And that is where you are wrong, my friend. I have recently realized that the celebration of the earth is not just one day, it is not just one week, or one month, or one year, but every day is Earth Day, every moment is Earth Moment, for if the earth did not exist, neither would we.

 So my fine people, I call to you to spread the love of the earth. Let these earth balls be a catalyst to conversation about our earth and Mother Nature and everything she has done for us and continues to do for us. And maybe, just maybe we can turn our destructive cycle of living into a productive one, and thus make our earth, the only planet we know of that supports life (our life), sustainable. On a sustainable planet future generations will have the opportunity and the joy to experience the wonders of nature that we have taken for granted for so many years.

 Happy Earth Life.

Cows Dairy Butter Toffee and Assorted Flavors, Which One Do You Favor?

Friday, May 14th, 2010 by Becca Droz
Jersey Butter Toffee Cows

Sherwood Brands Jersey Butter Toffee Cows are a tasty treat!

Sharability: 10

Denture Danger: 10

Convenience: 10

Novelty: 4

Overall: 6

 Sherwood Brand Toffee straight from the dairy of a cow, or at least the name implies so, has the original butter toffee flavor, and an assorted mix of vanilla flavored filled butter toffee, coffee flavored filled butter toffee and chocolate mint butter toffee. The assorted flavors are indeed in a particular order, ranging from worst to best.

 My father has told me to try my best to not bash candies in my blogs because even if I think the candy is horrible there are bound to be people out there who have fundamentally different taste buds than I do and think that terrible candies taste good.

With that said, I can’t resist bashing the vanilla filled butter toffee cow candy. It is not often that a candy is so bad that (1) it causes an uncontrollable grimace and (2) I can’t force myself to swallow it and resort to spitting it out. I tried to give it the benefit of the doubt and try another piece, hoping that the first one I tried was merely a lemon, but I was equally as grossed out by the second attempt.

 The reason I am justifying this bashing is because the assorted candies are still worth buying. The coffee flavoring filled butter toffee is alright, it’s not great, but I can’t really complain about it, and the mint chocolate butter toffee is something to tell your friends about. It is hard to go wrong with mint and chocolate, and this candy is proof because if a company can screw up a vanilla flavor as much as they did, there is no saying what they could do with other flavors; but they did not fail with the mint chocolate.

 Of course the original cow dairy butter toffee is tasty, but a bit harder on the teeth, which is where the denture danger of ten comes into play. Get some assorted cows and keep the mint chocolate for yourself and pretend like you are being a nice person by dishing out the vanilla ones, boasting about how delicious they are and people will probably take your word for it.

Gourmet Mints, But Really Just Mints

Monday, May 10th, 2010 by Becca Droz
Richardsons Gourmet Dinner Mints

Richardsons Gourmet Dinner Mints are a perfect chocolate candy

Sharability: 10

Denture Danger: 4

Convenience: 9

Novelty: 6

Overall: 7

Gourmet is a term that is represented as a cultural ideal in terms of a food or drink. It is a word that is associated with other words such as sophisticated and elaborate. On that note, I think that calling any food or drink “gourmet” is a bold statement to make and I think there should be some sort of qualifications that must be assessed in order to label a food with this elegant word.

 These gourmet mints may pass as gourmet because of the settings and situations they tend to be consumed. I would say these multicolored candy shelled covered mints are mostly found in little white dishes at events such as weddings and bar/bat mitzvahs and celebrations of all sorts.

They have a satisfying taste and they serve a secondary (or maybe primary, depending on the situation) purpose of cleansing your breath to a cool and minty status. If these simple mints can be considered gourmet I don’t understand why there aren’t more candies with fancy adjectives to describe them and thus move them up in the marketing world.

Generically Speaking, Zachary Makes Soft Fruit Discs

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010 by Becca Droz
Zachary's Soft Fruit Jells

If you are looking for a Fruit Jel that is colorful, soft and tasty, look no further....

Sharability: 9

Denture Danger: 9

Convenience: 10

Novelty: 5

Overall: 8

Don’t get this candy confused with Sunkist fruit gems, because though the two soft sugarcoated gelatin cylinders look almost identical these discs have a much better flavor-consistency combination making the eating of them almost more enjoyable than throwing them.

These fruit discs can be considered a generic version of the Sunkist Fruit Gems, so lucky for you, a cheaper and better tasting gelatin cylinder athoguh these are not marked as being Kosher. If these had been used as throwing candy at Bar and Bat Mitzvahs (see Sunkist fruit gems blog for explanation) there would have been more empty wrappers on the ground than squished up candies to be collected by the kids.

 These fruit discs are thicker and denser than the Sunkist fruit gems so you can see the smooth teeth markings when you take a perfect bite out of one. The sugar coating adds a mysterious crunch that you think you would avoid with a gooey jelly candy like this one. Zachary Confections is a family business that is in need of a new marketing agent.

Zachary’s current slogan is “since 1950” and the only other writing that accompanies that catchy slogan on their wrapper is allergy information warning you “this product was created in a facility that process products containing soy, dairy, egg, and peanut ingredients.” So all of you allergen freebees enjoy the generic but delicious soft fruit discs.

Sixlets: The Bold and the Beautiful

Monday, March 1st, 2010 by Becca Droz
Although we tend to favor retro candy advertisements or wrappers, we couldn't resist this cute Sixlets candy logo from Sweetworks

Although we tend to favor retro candy advertisements or wrappers, we couldn’t resist this cute Sixlets candy logo from Sweetworks

Sharability: 5

Denture Danger: 3

Convenience: 8

Novelty: 6

Overall: 8

Sixlets are, without a doubt, one of those childhood favorites. I used to love getting a tube and eating the little balls by putting the wrapper in my mouth and sliding the ball out with my teeth.

These crunchy, colorful, candy coated, milk chocolate pieces are not only fun to eat but they offer something different than similar candies such as M&Ms. The different colored candy shells actually have slightly different flavors making these even more irresistible. Also, the chocolate is made of a carob and cocoa mixture, which adds for a touch more diversity. Nine little balls come in a traditional cellophane package of Sixlet candy, but if you’re feeling wild you can get the twelve-ball tube or even the twenty-ball tube.

Leaf Confections, which is a SweetWorks Company, is the one responsible for the manufacturing of this wonderful candy. From the SweetWorks website, “The goal of SweetWorks is to give customers rich quality products and great customer service, while striving to make the best even better. SweetWorks takes great pride in celebrating over a half-century of providing pleasure, quality and unique products for our consumers worldwide.”

They are working with some pretty bold statements here, but I’ve got to say, Sixlets are pretty good and they do provide pleasure, quality, and uniqueness.

Sources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sixlets

http://www.sweetworks.net/Sixlet.html

Ju Ju Hearts Filled With Ju-Ju Love

Friday, February 12th, 2010 by Becca Droz
Juju Hearts are a fun candy for Valentine's Day and may be infused with magical powers...

Juju Hearts are a fun candy for Valentine’s Day and may be infused with magical powers…

Sharability: 10

Denture Danger: 8

Convenience: 8

Novelty: 8

Overall: 7

Ju Ju Hearts are another great Valentine’s Day candy. Upon seeing the bag of red scrumptious squishy hearts I assumed they would be cinnamon flavored. Though these hearts would probably be better with the cinnamon spice tongue tingler, the cherry flavor that lies within the Ju Ju Heart is far from terrible.

It has a similar flavor to the red jolly rancher, but it isn’t too sweet or medicinal tasting, which many cherry flavored candies tend to be. The Ju Ju heart is a great candy for the gummy valentine.

Coming from West African origin, Ju-Ju is either an object used as an amulet or fetish or is the word representing the supernatural power that is ascribed to an object. The terms came to the United States through African slaves and those who still practice certain African traditions still use the term Ju-Ju and the customs associated with it.

I don’t want to make any rash assumptions, but if I were to take a guess I would say that the manufacturer named these hearts ‘Ju Ju Hearts’ with the not-so-hidden-implication that there are supernatural powers of love implanted in every heart, but don’t take my word for it.

Sources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juju

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/juju

Choo Choo Charlie says Love my Good & Plenty!

Wednesday, January 6th, 2010 by Becca Droz

 

Vintage Good and Plenty Advertisement Circa 1960's

Vintage Good and Plenty Advertisement Circa 1960′s

Sharability: 7

Denture Danger: 6

Convenience: 8

Novelty: 9

Overall: 9

The Quaker City Confectionary Company first produced the Good & Plenty candy in 1893 and believe it or not it is the oldest branded candy in the United States.

Over the years the company has changed hands from Quaker City, to Warner-Lambert, to Leaf Candy Company, to Beatrice Foods, to the current manufacturer, Hershey.

There was much controversy over the naming of this candy, but eventually the Quaker City Confectionary Company settled with Good & Plenty as the name instead of the less catchy Bad & Scarce.

The name is sometimes misleading because though it might imply that there are plenty to go around, once you give them away you realize that there aren’t enough for you.

Over 50 years after the candy was first produced, the company came up with a catchy cartoon character for marketing the candy. Choo Choo Charlie quickly became popular to kids all over America (including my mom) with his theme song:

Once upon a time there was an engineer
Choo Choo Charlie was his name, we hear.
He had an engine and he sure had fun
He used Good & Plenty candy to make his train run.
Charlie says “Love my Good & Plenty!”
Charlie says “Really rings my bell!”
Charlie says “Love my Good & Plenty!”
Don’t know any other candy that I love so well!

The only kind of person that doesn’t like the Good & Plenty candy is the kind of person who doesn’t like the black licorice flavor to begin with. If you like black licorice then this candy is great. The chewy licorice cylinder is covered in a hard candy shell, and the best part is that the ratio of candy to licorice is just right.

The question lies in the color. Does the white one have a different flavor than the pink one? I have personally done field research to answer this question, as I’m sure most of you have done as well. I have found that the results concur with my hypothesis, and friends, I’m pleased to inform you that the answer is, (SPOILER ALERT) no. So you can all stop fighting over the last pink one.

Sources:

  • http://www.hersheys.com/products/details/goodandplenty.asp
  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Good_&_Plenty