I’m upset today, cause I feel hard candy gets a bad rap. It’s “Occupy Chocolate” up in here. It seems almost no one I know likes hard candy-but I love it. Why? Why not? If the flavor is good, then you have a small, power packed little nugget of joy to suck on in any situation. Meeting? No problem. Funeral? Appropriate. Baseball game? Playing or watching, sure!
People tend to equate hard candy with old people, their Grandparents specifically, and somehow that becomes a bad thing. I don’t know when everyone starting hating grandparents so much, but I for one am taking a stand. While it’s true that I don’t need to eat one more of those Brach’s butterscotch yellow hard candies that Grandma’s have in their candy bowls-ever again-I AM open to trying just about anything else. When I do happen to stumble upon a quality hard candy, well…it’s a revelation, my friends.
My road dog CHiPs went home to Texas a few months back and picked out a huge selection of Claeys Hard Candies. Note to Claeys: change your name to Clay’s. I promise things will get better.
You’ve probably seen one or two bags of these before, especially if you have an old timey/folksie candy store in your area. Each of these bags is a hefty 6 ounces, loaded with roundish slightly dusted hard candies. Very…”real” looking:
From left to right, we have Root Beer, Lemon, Horehound, Cherry, and Green Apple.
Root Beer: I’m not a huge fan of root beer candy, but these were pretty good. CHiPS comments that they’re better than A&W Root Beer Barrels, so….”IN YO’ FACE, A&W!”
Lemon: Very tasty. Look, I love sour, but even I’ll admit that sometimes too sour is just not fun. These don’t come close to that. When you first start sucking, the flavor (like all of these) is a bit muted, but after a few seconds, the lemon really comes out. Nice, bright, sweet, and tangy, it’s delicious.
Horehound: Just for a second…let’s just stop. I’m from Philly. We don’t get taught about Horehounds you can eat, only those you try to avoid. Or not. Depends on your situation. Anyhow, these have something to do with molasses, which puts them on my “do not fly” list. Not my thing. Next…
Cherry: OK, here’s a first: the cherry are amazing. Maybe the best flavor in the bunch. Sweet, tangy, addictive. A friend compared them (in a good way) to Luden’s cough drops. Admit it, you used to have your mom buy those for you when you were “sick”, cause they tasted good. I know I did.
Green Apple: Ladies & Gentlemen, we have a winner. Wow. These really capture the flavor of green apples, with all the tartness and flavor. Really fresh, bright tasting. Perfect.
The thing that impressed me about these in general was the attention to flavor, with the edge of tartness. Too much candy forgets the tart note, which makes it one-note, which makes it boring. Which probably explains why a lot of people hate Grandparents, but me? I’m lobbying to keep them around.
If you’re me, and you enjoyed the fruit flavors more than the other two, I’d suggest buying the fruit combo bag, which also includes Watermelon. Buy from the link below (not the link above, as we get a few pennies if you buy from the green link below) and don’t look back. I’m bringing candy dishes back, and you should too. What was once dusty and old is now cool again. Full circle, all that shit.