Maoam is a German candy brand that’s been owned by Haribo since the late 1980s. They’re sold under the Maoam name, but the packaging is quite Haribo-esque, and the Haribo name and website are on the back.
I first came across Maoam in England in the form of taffy, and they were also in a selection of Swedish “Saturday candies” that my college’s associate master gave me. This bag of Maoam Happy Chews was purchased in France, but I also saw them in Spain, further (highly unscientific) evidence that Haribo is king of non-chocolate candy in Europe.
Each Happy Chew is about the size of my first thumb joint. They’re shiny and colorful, and I like how the color is kind of sparse in places, so that the white under layer peeks through.
Happy Chews are kind of like giant, cylindrical Skittles. They’re covered with a hard sugar shell, and inside is a sweet, grainy, flavored chew. Like Skittles, the candies take a while to completely dissolve.
They come in six flavors. Orange is orange, which tastes like sweet orange juice with just a tinge of tartness. Yellow is lemon. It starts off dryly tart, then mellows out into sweet and natural lemony flavor.
I’m pretty sure green is apple, except it doesn’t really taste like apples. It is reminiscent of apple-flavored bon-bons, in that it’s so sweetly, generically fruity that it burns the back of my throat, but there’s nothing about it that recalls actual apples.
Pink is raspberry. I usually dislike raspberry flavored stuff, as I hate the seedy flavors, but this candy manages to make those characteristically seedy raspberry notes pleasant and plummy, making it not at all upsetting to my olfactory system.
Red (not pictured) is cherry. It packs quite a cherry bite and has an evolving flavor profile. It starts off sweet, then goes to tart, and finally the deep almost-but-not-quite medicinal cherry flavors come through.
Last, but certainly not least (as it was my favorite) is brown, which is cola flavored. It’s wonderfully complex and captures all the nuance of real soda. It starts of generically sweet, then melds into a bright and fruity cola flavor with just a twinge of bitterness and a lemony finish. It’s like Haribo cola gummies to the umpteenth power.
Overall, these guys are pretty good but only in moderation. While their sweetness isn’t cloying, they are throat-burningly sweet after a while. After eating six in a row for tasting, I felt oversugared. While I wouldn’t turn them down if a friend offered me one from his or her bag, I wouldn’t buy them again. An O.