… one of the following 10 brands, which I’ll confirm next week. (My apologies for the additional suspense, but I have to play a little stall ball to accommodate the manufacturer’s launch date. I’ll give you some good clues along the way, though.)

1. Wacky Wafers

2. Marathon Bar

3. Black Cow

4. PB Max

5. Reggie Bar

6. Crispy M&M’s

7. Garbage Pail Kids

8. Bonkers

9. Sugar Mama

10. Yoohoo Chocolate Bar

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in Contests

In just a few short weeks, a classic American candy is coming out of retirement. During its initial launch period, it will only be available at Candy.com. Woot!

Guess which candy is making this huge comeback and you’ll automatically be entered to win a case of it! (Enter your guess after this post or on our Facebook fan page.)

Next week, I’ll announce the winner … and the much-loved brand coming out of retirement. Expect to be wowed!

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in Candy, Contests

About an hour ago, I called Tootsie Roll Industries to get the straight dope on the cute little Indian guy that occasionally appears on Tootsie Roll wrappers.

According to the Tootsie Roll spokesperson, “Chief Shooting Star” wasn’t originally intended to signify good luck. Back in 1931 when Tootsie Roll Pops launched, the chief represented “children at play” and still does today.

No matter. My daughter and her friends collect all of their Chief Shooting Star wrappers and stash them in their jewelry boxes for good luck. The kind woman I spoke with at Tootsie Roll Industries says her own daughter crumples these special wrappers and makes a wish. I like that.

I re-crumpled the wrapper I photographed above and wished for a bouquet of cherry- and chocolate-flavored Tootsie Roll Pops for Valentine’s Day.

I hope my family is reading.

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I’ve got Halloween costumes on the brain. I’ve been reading press releases and blogs predicting the most popular costumes to hit the streets this Oct. 31. Not surprisingly, Lady Gaga, Iron Man, Toy Story, Alice In Wonderland, and Jersey Shore characters seem to be topping most of the lists.

Those are all fine costume themes, but not necessarily all that clever (although there is a lot you could do with Lady Gaga and the “Situation.” Hmmm, I see a couple’s costume in the making.)

So, for this week’s contest, tell us: What’s the most creative costume you’ve ever worn, witnessed, made for your child, grandchild, pet, etc.?

We’re not looking for most elaborate costume, either. Just clever. A few years ago, I saw a guy who taped Barbie dolls to his chest and said he was a “chick magnet.” Clever and economical. Win-win.

The Candy.com team will vote to come up with the winner who will receive this super cute Trick or Treat Halloween Candy Bouquet:

(Shameless plug: If you haven’t seen Candy.com’s gynormous selection of candy bouquets, it’s well worth the click. The Party in a Pumpkin Care Package bouquet is great for college students. And, now through Sunday 10/10, Halloween treats at Candy.com are 10% off. Use code “Halloween10″ at checkout.)

The winner of the Trick or Treat Halloween Candy Bouquet will be revealed later this week.

To get your creative juices flowing, here’s a handful of creative costumes I found last night while I inadvertently burnt the family frozen pizza. Aaaack!

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in Candy, Contests, Gifts, Halloween

It’s audience participation day here at Candy.com.

We want to know, “What discontinued candy brands would you like to see revived?” (Think PB Max, Summit Bar, Hershey’s BarNone, etc.)

I personally want to see the Marathon Bar* make a comeback, and not as a protein bar.  You know, the long, braided caramel bar covered in chocolate from the 1970s that left a trail of chocolate crumbs when you ate it? (If you’re not 30-something yet, you missed a good mess.)

Win Free Candy!
Everyone who replies to this call for candy casualties on Facebook/CandyDotCom or the Candy.com blog will be entered into a drawing to win 30 full-sized classic candy bars, including Kit Kats, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Hershey’s Milk Chocolate, and Hershey’s Milk Chocolate With Almonds. Yum!

From your feedback, I’ll occasionally channel Colombo and find out whatever happened to a particular candy and report my findings here. Stay tuned.

I wonder if Lt. Columbo ever ate a Marathon Bar?

*See CandyBlog’s I Miss: Marathon post for great historical information on the original Marathon Bar.

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Chiclets for dinner!!

And shouldn’t it technically be Teethpaste? Honestly, I’m asking. As everybody knows, the vicissitudes of the English language are many and storied, and while we may be novitiates with regard to the inflectional rules of certain nettlesome lexemes, we here at Candy.com know our Candy. Which is why I can answer the following question; which came first, Chiclets gum, or Chiclets as slang term for those things that are always a-fallin’ out of your head and having to be brushed, etc?

Brush the hair off them cowstoppers

Place your wagers.

Drum-roll please.

Thanks, Al! Mr. Al Jackson everybody, of Stax/ Volt!

Turns out the answer is the gum, the term proceeding from the (apparently accidental) resemblance these ancient chews bear to common teeth, not the reverse, silly. So why such an unusual name— one that makes one think of small, young birds and bar-fights? Ever heard of the “Chicle?” It’s a tropical evergreen tree that grows in Mexico, Central and South America, which produces a resinous sap, long chewed by the indigenous folks of the area and adopted for use as the gum base in the original manufacture of Chiclets gum back in 1906. Highly renowned, Chiclets have been so ubiquitous in some parts of the world (especially in the Middle East and portions of North Africa and Europe) that the name has become a general term for all varieties of chewing gum.

The culprit tree with its bulbous nodes

Could numerous millions and several generations be wrong?

Of course they could, but we’re not going to hate on Chiclets (without) just ‘cause. Chiclets are solid gum, both literally and conversationally. The peppermint and spearmint varieties have clean, refreshing, aptly-named flavors and a crispy candy shell that sets them apart from most of your basic chews. The first bite is a heavenly, mentholated blast of soft and crunchy and while, (like anything, but gum in particular), the good times don’t last, I’d guess fifteen to twenty minutes of herbivore-caliber chewing had elapsed by the time I realized I wasn’t enjoying myself anymore.

A mighty chew

Unfortunately, there’s a dearth of the assorted-fruit Chiclets around the office so I can’t comment on them at this time, but if my memory serves me, (which is regrettably seldom) they’re also pretty dang good. I’ll get back to you on ‘em.

Pinky Swear

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in Candy, Nostalgic/Retro, Reviews, Soft