Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

19 Mar

And they Really Work*! 0

I want to meet this Gustaf and shake his sticky, licorice worn hands. A tasty and functional candy that doesn’t fill you up (unless abused) and never lets you down (if your expectations are reasonable)? Excuse me while I fan myself with this woven-straw hat for a spell.

Incidentally, you could make one of these out of rainbow lace.**

Dutch Confectionery, Gerrit J. Verburg Co., is known for its licorice products. While these fruit flavored laces aren’t licorice in a technical sense, they bear some similarity to the colorful, fruit flavored “licorice” vines and ropes that have long been popular in the U.S. Fans of Strawberry Twizzlers will find a lot to enjoy in Gustaf’s Rainbow Laces, as might any fan of fruit gummies in general.

You'll see why in a moment

The laces come in a mass tangled enough to discourage Mark Summers, so I don’t recommend trying to separate the flavors. The best way to go about eating this stuff is to dive in head first, knees bent, talons drawn, screaming. Tear away until your threshers are laden with harvest, pause to catch your breath, then proceed according to your taste. While each of the four flavors can be enjoyed individually, I feel that– like the Three Sisters– they are best enjoyed simultaneously. Strawberry and Apple are Sweet and tangy, while Blue Raspberry and Tutti-Frutti are milder and more complex. Together, the relative strengths and weakness sort of blend together and flatten out into a surprisingly satisfying combination of all four.

Plus, you can tie your shoes with the stuff***!

*Where Work = May or May not Work

** Be advised, such a hat may melt in the sun.

***The stuff may not prove adequate for use as shoe-lace.

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17 Mar

Unicorn Pops 0

Huzzah!

What cures poisoning, is worth many times its weigh in gold, attracts impressionable youths, makes a kickin’ decal and tastes delicious? Unicorn horns!

Awesome

Whether or not you believe the stories, you can’t be denying facts, so let me lay them out for you.

Killer

Unicorn Pops are revolving, evolving, spiraling towers of assorted fruity flavored hard candy strips. As you slurp away at the sweet, mild and natural tasting exterior, you’ll notice the flavors change and morph. The pop I sampled started off tasting like pure barley sugar, changed to blueberry from there, tarried briefly at lime, stopped short at raspberry, waffled merrily into strawberry and thenceforth dissolved into a delicious gustatory cacophony of all the above.

Surely, it was a lot of sugar, yet I left the pop feeling good, slightly magical even. Overall, a confectionery experience of rare proportions.

OMG Unicorns!

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16 Mar

Albanese Separates the Men from the Guys 0

Set ‘em up and knock ‘em back—that’s how you deal with Army Men. I wish the same could be said of Albanese’s Army Guys.

Guys, dudes, bros—you know who I’m talking about. Your brother could very well be a guy and that guy down the hall that listens to G. Love & Special Sauce? It’s conceivable that he too is a guy. You might even be a guy. While many guys prefer hanging out, chilling, maxing, kicking back, tuneskies, the phrase “beer me,” and plastic thong sandals to MREs and the constant threat of annihilation, several have adapted successfully to life in the Armed Services. Due to a perceived dominance of and ubiquity within the paradigm, market-driven approaches to the portrayal of military institutions in film, television and popular music tend to represent men  as the sole participants in warfare, thus (advertently and inadvertently) advancing  a  by-men for-men socio-historical narrative as narrow in scope as it is epistemologically irresponsible. While I applaud Albanese (USA “World’s Best”) for attempting to redress these unfortunate circumstances by naming its Gummi  jarheads “Army Guys,” I’m disappointed in the product from the standpoint of a confectionery appraiser.

Some stock guy, just trying to enjoy himself.

My eagerness to mete justice by recognizing the contribution of army guys to the course of history was blanched from the moment I opened the bag. As I bent to smell the guys, I was disappointed that instead of stale cereal and patchouli or whatever, the distinct aroma of gluey porch treatment hit my nostrils like some kind of tough man. Guys don’t smell like a classroom of kindergarteners scribbling away with permanent markers– men do! The iniquities didn’t stop there. Biting into the guys (who were supposed to taste like green apple), my mouth was offended by both their flavor and texture. We all know that guys can be a little sloppy when it comes to personal appearance and hygiene, but these guys were ridiculous. These guys tasted like uncooked egg-whites that had been sprayed with that bitter apple pet deterrent stuff that some guys use on their dogs and were approximately the consistency of old gak some guy has had lying around under his couch since 1994. Perhaps this sounds harsh. As a guy, I’m capable of exaggeration, but guys, trust me.

We appreciate the effort guys, but seriously, you’re giving guys a bad rap.

Hey, guy, here’s the link.

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12 Mar

Time has Come for Revenge of the NERDS! 0

Though time has passed for Valentine’s Day, and that’s the NERD variety I sampled (read: wolfed down within a minute of having opened the package) for today’s review. Sorry for being out of the loop, but when you review candies for a living you tend to work at the whim of whatever you’ve got lying around.

I mean, I got this, but srsly.

First, let me say that I’m a little cheesed at Wonka for not incorporating the brilliant “twin-chamber” gimmick into their mini-boxes. It’s amazing how a tiny strip of chipboard separating varieties of these charming, carnauba wax coated candies can turn us into slavering Captain K’nuckleses, but then we all know what savagery lurks in the hearts of men. Lucky for NERDS, they got it together when it comes to taste, so I’m willing to forgive them this pint-sized oversight.

This wittle. Are the animal pictures working for you guys?

“NERDS Valentine” is comprised of two flavors; the straightforwardly titled strawberry and the mysterious, possibly injurious “punch.” The former is, predictably, pink very sweet and slightly creamy while the latter is white, tangy and a bit like the Juicy Juice flavor that at least has the decency to specify that it’s “fruit punch.” Separately they’re satisfying, and together they’re even better, weirdly (but not unpleasantly) tasting almost like cilantro at times. Since I’m incredibly impatient with food I tend to crunch anything I’m eating to oblivion. In the case of NERDS, crunching is a necessity, but be warned, you will cough.

Happy Hearts and Pink Things!

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