April 11th, 2012 by Rosa
Huevitos was another Ricolino’s candy that I picked up at a local Hispanic grocery. They were touted as new, though Cybele said she had them last year.
The packaged described them as “candy coated chocolate flavor eggs.” “Chocolate flavor” is a marketing/packaging red flag. It means that there’s no actual cocoa butter inside.
These looked nice, like prettily speckled eggs. But ooh they smelled gnarly, like anise (I’m an avid licorice detester).
The candies had brown spotted sugar shells that I could easily smoosh between my fingers. The “chocolate flavor” centers were soft, grainy, and chewy.
Those centers tasted worse than they smelled – it was both sour and sweet with chemical flavors and an anise edge. I couldn’t even finish one.
It’s a shame that they were so pretty to behold, yet so gross to eat. Run away! A –.
Category: --, chewy, Hispanic, review |
3 Comments »
February 3rd, 2012 by Rosa
My friends Nana and Justin have been having great adventures while living the expat life and chronicling it all in their awesome blog. They’ve been kind enough to send me great candy finds from abroad, including my all-time most popular review: Crunky Nude Balls.
Recently, they mailed me a bunch of Japanese candies, including this pack of
Lime Shikwasa Hi-Chew. I originally thought these were lime, but Debby and Nana cleared that up in the comments. A Shikwasa is a tart Japanese citrus fruit with a green rind and golden flesh.
Also, there’s all kinds of fun stuff going on on that wrapper in addition to the Shikwasas. Nana has a great explanation in the comments.
I’ve reviewed a bunch of Hi-Chew in the past. Like all Hi-Chew, it comes in a pack of individually wrapped rectangles. The chew started off sproingy and then softened and became stickier.
These were a pale pistachio green with a white center. The flavor was amazingly juicy and spot on.
It was incredibly sweetly limey and zesty with the perfect edge of pithy bitterness. As the chew went on, the zestiness intensified and took on just a hint of herbal grassiness.
There was no sourness to it, and the sweetness level was perfect – tasty without being cloying – with just the right tidbit of bitterness to set it off.
I couldn’t stop popping these and would change nothing about them. Well, I would change one thing: bring them to the U.S. please! A ZOMG!
Category: Asian (China, Japan, and Korea), chewy, Morinaga, received as gift, review, ZOMG! |
6 Comments »
September 16th, 2011 by Rosa
When I was in middle school and high school, we used to sell these little bags of Eiffel Bon Bons to raise money for French Club and the National French Honor Society. I think I ate as many bags as I sold – they were so addictive!
I found larger bags of strawberry and apple Bon Bons at Cost Plus World Market and had to immediately snatch them up for reviewing (and eating).
For the record, it was my first foray into the wondrous global grocery that is CPWM, and holy cow did I come home with loads of candy! Those will be making appearances in the coming weeks.
The Bon Bons were little nuggets, slightly larger than thumbnail-sized. Strawberry was pink and apple was a pale lime green. Both had white centers.
They were all coated with a light dusting of fine powdered sugar. They could be held in the mouth and dissolved, but I never had – and still don’t have – the patience for that.
Instead, I like to chew mine up. The chew starts off almost stiff and works the jaw for a chomp or two, but it softens quickly. The texture then becomes almost Starburst-like, but with a coarser grain.
Strawberry was sweet with a bright, floral fruitiness. It tasted like strawberry candy concentrate: a strawberry gummi bear with the flavor turned up to 11.
Apple had the flavor of a Granny Smith apple, only it slightly sweeter and not as sharp. There was still a mild sourness, but it never approached levels of puckeriness.
Like the strawberry, the apple flavor was intense and super concentrated. And somehow, the flavor never dissipated as my chewing continued.
The best part of these is the chew. The texture slowly morphs as the bright, intense flavors explode and fill the mouth.
They’re just as addictive as I remember them being, though I have less tolerance for the compounding effect of their sweetness these days. Still, an OMG.
Category: chewy, European, OMG, review |
4 Comments »
July 13th, 2011 by Rosa
I received this bag of Crystal Light Sugar Free Chewy Candy as a free sample from the National Confectioners Association.
I’m not one who would buy sugar free candy for myself, but I was happy to give them a try. I’d had Crystal Light’s Sugar Free hard candies before, which I had found quite nice.
Read the rest of this entry »
Category: --, chewy, review |
1 Comment »
July 8th, 2011 by Rosa
I received this pack of Hi-Chew Mango as a free sample from Morinaga USA, along with my packs of Hi-Chew Peach and Banana. I thought I’d already reviewed them, but it turns out I had just written a news post about them.
The Hi-Chews had an orange-yellow center surrounded by an off-white shell that didn’t photograph well. Just imagine this, but slightly more orangey. The flavor, however, was flawless!
It tasted just like a fresh, juicy, perfectly ripe mango. I have no words to describe it other than as a perfect distillation of real mango into a candy chew.
As the sticky chewiness developed, the unique mango seediness became stronger and lingered a bit in the finish. I found it intoxicatingly delightful and almost better than the real thing. An OMG.
Category: Asian (China, Japan, and Korea), chewy, Morinaga, OMG, review |
1 Comment »
June 20th, 2011 by Rosa
I got a pack of Hi-Chew Banana from Morinaga USA in the same box that had my Hi-Chew Peach sample. I wasn’t too enthusiastic about trying it because I generally really don’t like banana flavored candies.
Artificial banana is not my thing. Banana Runts? Run away!
Fortunately, the Hi-Chew banana didn’t taste artificial at all! Instead, its banana flavor was surprisingly genuine, like the actual fruit instead of some chemical approximation.
The chew started off with a mild sweetness and just a hint of banana scent. As I chomped away, the overtones of real banana flavors became stronger before ceding ground back to a pleasantly fruity sweetness not unlike the base flavor of the Peach.
This isn’t my favorite Hi-Chew flavor, but I enjoyed it much more than I expected to. Kudos to Hi-Chew for making banana not just palatable but even enjoyable. An O.
Category: Asian (China, Japan, and Korea), chewy, Morinaga, O, review |
June 15th, 2011 by Rosa
I’ve reviewed Hi-Chew several times on this site. Most of them were gifts from friends or businesses in Asia, so some of them were flavors that aren’t sold in the U.S. The Hi-Chew that I’m reviewing today is U.S.-specific.
The company that makes Hi-Chew, Morinaga, has a U.S. subsidiary that sells Hi-Chew in strawberry, green apple, mango, melon, banana, and grape flavors. And as of last month’s Sweets and Snacks Expo, a peach Hi-Chew flavor is now available in the U.S. I got a free sample pack to review from Morinaga.
The Peach Hi-Chew had a light pink center and a lightly floral scent. It started off with a very mild, not very sweet flavor. As its bouncy chew developed, however, the sweetness grew.
Honestly, it didn’t taste much like peach to me. It just tasted mild and floral and sweet, maybe more like a muted strawberry. I was surprised, as Hi-Chew is usually really spot-on with their fruit flavors.
Though it wasn’t as peachy as I would have liked, it was still quite enjoyable with its pleasantly light flavor. An OM.
Category: Asian (China, Japan, and Korea), chewy, Morinaga, OM, review |
3 Comments »
March 14th, 2011 by Rosa
This pack of Tofita came to me all the way from Egypt, via my friend Katie. She was in the country for archeological work and managed to get out right before the unrest really erupted. Today’s candy is tinged with revolution!
Tiny English print on the side called it, “Chewy Candy with Fruit Juice – Blackberry Flavor.” The square candies were individually wrapped in delightfully retro-looking paper.
Their chew was soft and not sticky. Their texture was that of a non-sticky Starburst.
The flavor was sweet with a light seedy bite that conjured up the essence of blackberries and blackcurrants. I loved the complexity of this treat and wish it was a flavor that was used more in the U.S. candy market. An OM.
Category: African, chewy, OM, received as gift, review |
1 Comment »
February 28th, 2011 by Neil
This week and into next, I’m turning the reviewing over to my friend Neil. He’s from upstate New York but is currently living in the Netherlands. Ironically enough, his guest posts are about Chinese candy.
A labmate went home to China to celebrate the New Year and brought back a lot of candy to share. I asked her to select some for me. Here were my impressions:
White Rabbit, previously rocked by a variety of contamination scandals, has kept its name in China, thereby sticking Jefferson Airplane in my head for the remainder of the day. Mildly daunted by the possibility of contamination, I remembered that despite various food aversions, I do take some risks when it comes to food safety, particularly when there are sweet rewards to be had.
The White Rabbit candy looked to me like a vanilla Tootsie Roll, a confection I haven’t seen since my move out of the U.S. Its hardness was beyond that of a Tootsie, however, and I’m unsure whether to chalk this up to this instance of the candy or if this is common.
Once upon a time, in my 8th grade Earth Science course, I learned the Mohs hardness scale for minerals. I’d say this rated a 2.5 on the Mohs.
Upon first bite, flakes of the Rabbit came off. I believe they were rice paper, but it’s a little disconcerting [note from Rosa: It is rice paper, and it's totally edible]. That bite took a lot of power.
The flavor struck me as a combination of vanilla (perhaps due to visual priming), sugar, and milk: something akin to a vanilla milkshake or Upstate Farms’ Intense Vanilla Milk. The sweetness wasn’t too intense, so it was a pleasant, even relaxing flavor.
Unfortunately, the required mastication is frustrating, taking away from my enjoyment of the candy itself. I am tempted to try another, giving the Rabbit another chance, but not before I give these other candies a chance. Solid O.
More to come from Neil on Wednesday!
Category: Asian (China, Japan, and Korea), chewy, guest post, O, review |
3 Comments »
February 16th, 2011 by Rosa
Here’s a quick round-up of a bunch of Hi-Chews that I got as free samples from Tsunami.hk. If you’re not familiar with Hi-Chews, they’re like Asian Starbursts, only chewier and more genuinely flavorful.
Canned Peach is an unusual flavor for any candy. I think the Jr. part of the wrapper refers to the fact that this pack was about half the size of normal Hi-Chew packs. The chews themselves were totally normal sized.
Those chews were a pale orange color. They tasted floral and rather artificially sweet with mango undertones. I guess they’re supposed to taste less genuine because of the canned part of the name. An O.
Melon (far right in the trio) was cantaloupe flavored. Its flavor was spot on, with a melony high overtone, though I found it a bit too sweet overall. Another O.
Cherry (center in the trio) was rather blah. It had a mild red fruit flavor but was otherwise unexceptional. Yet another O.
Grapefruit had a zesty bite with that slight citrusy bitterness that’s distinctive of grapefruit. There was a hint of sweetness of this chew, but it was really all about the bite. My favorite of the bunch and a deserved OM.
Category: Asian (China, Japan, and Korea), chewy, Morinaga, O, OM, review |
2 Comments »