Archive for the ‘Candy Type’ Category

Chicago was hopping yesterday. The Cubs, Blackhawks, and Just Born’s Peepster mobile were all in town.


Terese McDonald, the lovely and fun owner of Candyality, gave me a heads up that the Peepster and the Cub’s star pitcher, Ryan Dempster, would both be at her Wrigleyville candy shop. (Click here to track the Peepster’s next stops.)

Candyality shop owner Terese McDonald with her husband, Matt.

What a great day! As if on cue, the Peepster, with its big yellow Peep perched on its roof, pulled up to Candyality right after we parked the Gillerlain Mobile. The Peeps crew immediately started handing out Just Born’s new Peepster chocolates (thumbs up) and hats to a happy crowd.

My not-so-shy son walked up to “Peeps” the mascot, and asked the yellow fellow what he ate for dinner. I was curious to hear the response, but Peeps’ handler kindly told my son that Peeps didn’t make a peep. (If Peeps could talk, I bet he would have said blue Peeps.)

Shortly after, Ryan Dempster arrived in a cab straight from his game against the Pirates and signed mini bins filled with red, white, and blue “Cubbie Gummi Bears.” Sales of the candies benefited the Ryan and Jenny Dempster Family Foundation, which is dedicated to raising awareness and supporting families affected by 22q11.2—a chromosomal disorder that Ryan and his wife Jenny’s daughter Riley was born with. (Riley came to the shop, too, and is adorable.)

After we got a chance to meet Ryan (really nice guy), my not-so-shy son was back at it with the questions. He asked the Cubbie which team gives him the biggest pitching challenge. Without any hesitation, Ryan replied, “the Atlanta Braves.”

That's me on the left with my daughter, son, husband, and the Cubbies' Ryan Dempster in the middle.

With that, we wondered up the street to grab pizza at D’Agostino’s, the local restaurant that just landed the pizza contract at Wrigley Field (love that!), and popped back into the Gillerlain Mobile to head home.

Great day! Thank you Terese, Ryan, and Peeps road crew.

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in Candy, Just Born, Inc., Marshmallow, News, Peeps

Wedding season is in full bloom—and magnified by the April 29 Royal Wedding.

Word on the bridal beat is that the “it” color for weddings is regal purple. According to TheKnot.com’s recently released 2010 wedding survey, purple was selected by 1 out of 5 brides (21%) for their wedding—up 50% since 2008. Losing popularity with brides is brown, which apparently plummeted 16% last year.

Colored Sixlets are one of Candy.com's most popular wedding candies.

Since purple (especially lavender) is such a hot wedding color and 14% of brides in the TheKnot.com’s survey said they had a candy buffet at their 2010 wedding, I put together a “Purplicious” board at Pinterest.com and filled it with a range of purple candies (see my attempt at a reproduction below).

Perhaps the young royal couple will see the Pinterest board and be inspired to treat their wedding guests to a candy buffet outfitted with All-Natural Lavender Honey Tea Spoons. Purple honey spoons could be the perfect accompaniment to the rumored royal fruitcake. :)

(Click on photos below for product details and to see Candy.com’s entire purple candy collection.)

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20 Mar

First Sign of Spring: Peeps Show 0

In honor of the first day of spring today and American Chocolate Week, March 20-26, I put together a Peeps show. What!?

Let me explain. Over the past few days, I’ve noticed a handful of newspapers sponsoring “Peeps Diorama” contests, including The Washington Post and The Denver Post. I must live under a rock since this is the first time I’ve heard of such a contest, and some are on year five.

Since it was a drab, rainy morning here in Chicago today, I talked my kids into making a Peeps diorama and sweetened the deal with American chocolate snacks: a Hershey’s Symphony bar and a Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Almond bar. (My weak attempt at tying in the celebration of American Chocolate Week.)

We agreed on a “Hush, don’t make a Peep,” theme and collected the goods: shoebox, Peeps, edible grass, cotton candy, wrapping paper, construction paper, glue sticks, and scissors.

Sixty minutes and several chocolate squares later, we came up with …

Flopsy, Mopsy, and Cottontail with visions of jelly beans peeping in their heads.

It’s a far cry from The Washington Post’s 2010 winner …

"Eep!" was based on the Pixar movie "Up."

(See slideshow of The Washington Post‘s 2010 winning entries.)

and the The Denver Post’s 2010 winner …

"Peepatar" was based on the 3-D blockbuster "Avatar."

(See slideshow of The Denver Post‘s 2010 winning entries.)

Even so, we had a great time tucking our Peeps into their box beds. It was a creative, kid-friendly project that would be fun to roll out at spring birthday parties, Easter gatherings, and future rainy days. If you get inspired, send me your finished-project pics.

Happy Spring 2011!

Photo credits:
The Washington Post
, Bill O’Leary
The Denver Post
, Cyrus McCrimmon

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11 Mar

Sweet Flavor Trends 2011 0

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Contest Update: The winner of the $25 Candy.com gift certificate is Michele Clark Powell! Michele answered the question posted below, “What NEW jelly bean flavor would you like to see made?” with “Potato Chip.” Congrats Michele and thanks to all who participated!
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Flavor trends in the sweets arena are fascinating and fickle. Last year at the Sweets & Snacks show in Chicago, honey, bacon, and coconut had the press talking and manufacturers making. Coconut is apparently still hot as Mars will be launching its Limited Edition Coconut Twix next month right before Easter madness. Not sure of bacon’s confectionery future.

(As a side note, check out LAWeekly’s Top 10 Kit Kat Flavors You’ve Probably Never Tried. No sign of honey, bacon, or coconut in these Kit Kats.)

Bell Flavors & Fragrances, one of the big flavor development houses, released its Top 10 Sweet Flavors in 2011, which does include a variation of coconut. Bell says its sweet list is based on its customer requests over a 12-month period, trend scouting, and outside research resources like Mintel.

1. Chocolate Soufflé
2. Honey Vanilla
3. Red Velvet
4. Caramel Macchiato (I’m surprised about this one. It seems so Starbucks 1999.)
5. Yumberry (Had to look this one up. It’s a real fruit grown mainly in China. It’s pretty, but apparently pretty tart.)
6. Coconut Crème
7. Sweet Potato
8. Ginger Peach
9. Mint Citrus
10. French Toast

I don’t know if I’d eat a Sweet Potato gummy bear, French Toast Tic Tac, or a Yumberry jelly bean, but I might have said that of pomegranate six years ago.

Yumberries

With all this flavor talk, I’ve got a good Friday contest idea. Answer the following question after this post or on Facebook or Twitter and you’ll automatically be entered to win $25 Candy.com gift certificate. Here goes:

What NEW jelly bean flavor would you like to see made?

I personally would like to see Brown Sugar, Banana Fudge, or Nutella. Go wild with your imagination! If you need  inspiration, take a peek at Jelly Belly’s official 50 flavors.

I’ll announce the random winner on Monday after a nice, long short daylight-savings weekend. Have a good one!

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