Extreme Danger: 9
Warheads were definitely one of my favorite childhood candies and I’m sure I’m not the only one. When the little unsuspecting warhead first hits your tongue you think to yourself, “eh, this isn’t so bad.” Then as you rub you tongue against the thin sour layer of malic acid your face beings to turn to a similar expression Wally Warhead’s on the front package. Of all of the candies that are labeled “sour” warheads are the only candies I can think of that really live up to that title and pack a real sour punch. In fact, they aren’t only sour, they are an “extreme” sour candy.
After 30 seconds (plus or minus) the sour coating wears off leaving your tongue feeling tingly and letting the sweet flavor of either blue raspberry, apple, black cherry, watermelon, or lemon sooth your taste buds before you bite it in half to taste the more-sweet-than-sour malic acid that lies in the center of the warhead.
I remember going to sleep away camp and having a secret stash of warheads (we weren’t allowed to have candy) in which my friends and I would have warhead competitions. We would all plop the warhead in out mouths at the same time and whoever made a sour expression first, lost. We made sure that we all had the same flavor because we were all convinced that black cherry was the most sour, then lemon, and so on. I think it was more of us telling ourselves what was the most sour than there actually being a significant distinction.
Warheads were invented in 1975 in Taiwan and were first imported into the United States by The Foreign candy Company in 1993. Impact Confections now manufactures this super sour candy that was referred to as a “$40 million brand” in 1999.
The candy’s name comes from the idea that there is an actual warhead going off in your mouth. A real warhead is the front part of a missile or rocket that holds the explosive charge. The candy isn’t quite that intense, but eating one with a straight face definitely proves difficult. The warhead candy is strong enough that the package has a “WARNING: Eating multiple pieces within a short time period may cause a temporary irritation to sensitive tongues and mouths.” So eat at your own risk, but I’m telling you that it is worth it.