Yeah, there’s gonna be a lot of episodes, because this guy’s dream of being able review a HUGE selection of authentic British old fashioned hard candies has come true.
Despite having almost any candy you’d like available via Amazon or at least some other arcane web site, real boiled sweets are an English thing. And that means they ship from England. Amazon’s shit outta luck-you can’t find the goods there. Fortunately though, we’re partnering with the amazing British sweets shop AQuarterOf.co.uk. Their mission? “If it’s an old fashioned sweet and they still make it, we stock it”.
Anyhow, the kind people there have loaded us up with an assortment of goodies to review, so let’s get to it. Today we’ll start with three super old school treats: Sweet Peanuts, Choc Mints, and Licorice & Aniseed.
All the treats come in this style bag. It’s worth mentioning what’s written on the back: “Remember your trips to the local sweetshop? You looked in wonder at the brightly colored temptations in the jars and boxes of sweets, deciding what would end up in your little white paper bag……We stock penny sweets you used to buy with your pocket money…those multicolored highlights of your school week that you thought they’d stopped making years ago.”
This….is me, you guys. While I grew up in the states in the 70’s and 80’s, this is me. I vividly remember going to the corner store where there was a couple of arcade games, and candy. Mostly, I’d load up on Jolly Rancher bars (pink lemonade was my shit), but the process of looking and choosing…that’s where my love of candy came from. And I still have it. If you ever come to my house (you’re all invited) you’ll see my various jars of candy in my office. The look, the colors, the vibe…is equally as important and the taste.
Well, almost. But you get my point. I love candy just like you guys, and so do these guys. So let’s get to it.
Sweet Peanuts. Not like the cursed “Circus Peanuts” everyone hates in the states-remember, all these boiled sweets are hards. No, these are much more delicate, and interesting.
Yes, there’s a tinge of a peanut flavor to them (but no nuts IN them or in the thoughtful allergen label on the back of the bag) but they’re more of a mild caramel.
A slightly salty caramel “nutty” flavor. Nothing wrong with that. As you break it down, it seemed like you get just a little more salt and grit, which was nice.
I liked these, although I can say for sure, they won’t be among my favorites, as I already have many (I’m holding back those reviews till we get a bit deeper into our crash course). But I was impressed by the subtlety, and everyone I shared them with liked them as well. A winner.
Now for choc-or chocolate, mints.
Regal, no? It’s hard to see in these photos, but there’s a faint chocolate colored vein that runs through these, a but of a teaser as to what you can expect.
Here’s an adjective for you: INTENSE. Wow! These are super strong peppermints. Super strong-I’m a bit of a mint wimp, but Jonny Guru Jr. will love them. After some time…a chocolate edge comes in. And it’s nice and soothing. If you can wait long enough without biting it open, you’ll get to the center and it turns into a bit stronger of a chocolate vibe which is an amazing way to finish the candy. For mint lovers…this is a must buy.
And finally, going suuuuuper old school, I present Liquorice & Aniseed.
Look at these things:
People, that’s how you make hard candy. Make it gorgeous.
These are another seemingly intense flavor combo-but they don’t go in that direction. You get a mild licorice and stronger aniseed combo, which are a classic combination for a reason. Not overwhelming in any way, they just work. I’ve had aniseed candies from the UK before that I just couldn’t handle, but not these. There’s a subtlety and chill vibe to them that I really enjoyed.
And friends, as I said before, these are fringe. The real heroes are coming soon, but rest assured, we’ll get through all of them in due time. For sure though, definitely click the link below to gaze at their glorious site. Don’t like hard candies? Fine, I won’t berate you, dig into some amazing British gummies, chocolates-whatever you want. Just know that AQuarterOf is doing it legit, much in the same way The Candy Gurus would be doing if we had a store.
One day! But for now, click the dang link.
Boiled sweets Yay!