Archive for September, 2008

Unusual Asian Grocery Store Finds

September 4th, 2008 by Rosa

Asian grocery stores are great resources for international candy finds. Sometimes, however, those finds aren’t that great. Case in point:

I’d think the corn flavored candy thing was a translate server error, except that the package is covered in cartoon ears of corn. Candy corn is a cause I can get behind, as is candied popcorn. But candy made to taste like corn? Unsurprisingly, I passed on buying this bag.

I did seriously consider about giving these knockoff Ferror Rochers a try though:

If I hadn’t already had a suitcase full of UK candy to fly back to school, I would’ve seriously considered buying them.

Category: news | 3 Comments »

Lindt Chili Chocolate

September 3rd, 2008 by Rosa

Chocolate and chili is a taste combination familiar to Latin America (think Mexican hot chocolate) that’s beginning to catch on in foodie circles here in the U.S. It’s a flavor combination that I love, and I even submitted it as my Dream Bean to Jelly Belly’s contest. If you live in New Haven, try something at Claire’s Corner Copia with their Mexican chocolate frosting (yes, I know their cream cheese is great, but the Mexican chocolate is much more exciting).  Viva Chocolato had a delectably tingly chipotle gelato the first time I went there. I haven’t seen it again in my repeat visits, but they do rotate through their flavors, so you may get lucky.

I discovered Lindt‘s Chili Chocolate bar while in the UK, and when it went on sale in Sainsbury’s (1 pound a bar, or about $2), I stocked up and bought a couple to add to the half already in my stash. Yes, that counts as stocking up for me. When you consider how much candy I keep around, it’s rare that I buy seconds of something, and even more rare that I buy two seconds.

Super hoity toity chocolate connossieurs sometimes look down on Lindt the way that I look down on Hershey’s milk chocolate. I think they find it too mass produced and commercial to be worth eating. While I agree that fine artisinal chocolate can be better tasting and more nuanced, I still find Lindt to be a great fine chocolate at an affordable price.

Lindt’s chili bar (I guess it’s chilli in British English?) is set in their Excellence dark chocolate, which I’m pretty sure is a 70%. The chocolate is lusciously dark and glossy with pretty little etchings for decoration. At first taste, all you get is cocoa. But after a few chews, as the chocolate creamily melts over your tongue, just the slightest hint of chili heat comes through. It starts slowly, then builds to a noticeable but not unpleasant tingle. I love it. A ZOMG! from me, with the caveat that I’m biased by my adoration of chili chocolate.

Category: chocolate, Lindt, review, ZOMG! | 4 Comments »

Inflation. Boo.

September 2nd, 2008 by Rosa

Cybele at Candy Blog has a great round-up of how the rising cost of food has affected what Hershey’s is putting out on candy shelves. It’s not posted on her main page, only linked to, so I thought it was worth drawing your attention to.

Category: news | No Comments »

Oh! Nuts Malted Milk Balls

September 1st, 2008 by Rosa

The folks at Oh! Nuts were kind enough to send me a few bags of their bulk candy. They seem to specialize in event planning, as evidenced by their wedding candy section and their convenient candy by color section. But for me, it was their assorted malted milk balls that caught my eye. As I’ve noted before, I adore malt and malt candies.

Even though my shipment was completely free, it still arrived carefully packaged and in great shape. I was a bit concerned about them sitting around my apartment’s mailbox (indoors, but right by the front door) in the New Haven summer, but I needn’t have worried. The box was insulated with styrofoam and included several still cool gel packs. The candies arrived in Oh! Nuts branded resealable zip bags (greatly appreciated) with a content label on the back.

I specifically requested the pumpkin spice malted milk balls because I love pumpkin pie and pumpkin spiced things. In the fall, the Cheesecake Factory has a seasonal pumpkin cheese cake that I think is to die for, and I once made pumpkin oatmeal cookies that I couldn’t stop eating. So I had high hopes for these guys.

At room temperature, they were a bit of a letdown, as they tasted more of the spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger) that go into pumpkin pie than of pumpkin. They were good and texturally wonderful, with a light, malty, crispy center, but I wished for more pumpkin-ness. Then I had the good fortune to stick the remainder of my bag in the fridge. Once chilled, the spice flavor grew stronger, and a bit of pumpkinness came through, elevating these from an O to an OM.

The coconut malted milk balls arrived without my specific request for them. I was a bit dubious about them, as I generally don’t like coconut flavored things. They tend to be too waxy and artificial tasting for my taste. I was also suspicious of the white coating, as I also tend to dislike white chocolate. The coconut malted milks balls, however, turned out to be divine, which just goes to show that you shouldn’t discriminate against candy by making generalizations (though I think I’m safe with saying I’ll never like black licorice).

Like the pumpkin spice malted milk balls, the coconut ones had crisp and crunchy centers. The coconut flavored coating didn’t taste fake like that of a Mounds bar. Instead, it was fresh and creamy and reminded me of the coconut milk I used to love to chug down until I learned that coconut milk is chock full of saturated fat. I could not stop popping these, so they get an OMG.

Both 1-pound bags of malted milk balls quickly disappeared into the bellies of the members of… the YPMB, but the coconut ones disappeared first (though to be fair, I did talk them up more than the pumpkin spice ones), making me wish I had set aside more for myself before I brought them out to share. Thanks, Oh! Nuts, for making me popular with my friends and keeping my band happily fed and entertained (they kept shouting “Oh! Nuts!”).

Category: chocolate, coconut, cookie, O, OM, OMG, review | 3 Comments »