Being a child of the 70’s, complete with horrifying carob memories, is tough. Add to that going to college in Santa Cruz, California, home of the Birkenstock-clad longhairs and granola set, and I’m on track for full fledged hippy-dom, right? And yes, I grew my hair long and went to Grateful Dead shows too (but only ’cause my roomie was into it. I took him to see Love & Rockets & R.E.M… They were cool back in 1989, I promise.)
When it comes to hippies, they definitely have gotten one thing right through the years–no, not their penchant for weed. And DEFINITELY not their affinity for wearing frikkin’ patchouili. And let’s stop there for a moment. Have you guys smelled patchouli? It’s a scent that the longhairs wear to cover their own unwashed stink. The problem? Patchouli doesn’t smell like, say, Irish Spring soap. Nope. It smells like mold. Dirty, dank-ass mold. So..when I smell a moldy street urchin coming by, and THEN I smell their stinky pits, …it’s really revolting. It doesn’t “hide” the stank, hippies, I’m not sure who told you it did. How on earth did an entire demographic decide that something that smells like basement mold become the official cologne of the tie-dye set? Serious mistake. Mint woulda been much better, lavender fine, even basil. All good. All I can say is that I’m glad I don’t live in Santa Cruz anymore. The smell was deafening, if that’s possible.
Anyway, back to reality. So, the hippies have gotten one thing right over the years-they know what they’re talking about when it comes to food ingredients. But it’s really not exclusively a hippy thing, wanting all natural flavors in food with no chemicals. Now it’s trendy, and for good reason-it makes sense.
Here’s where I blow your mind though. Yes, you know that we at the Candy Gurus dig naturally flavored candies, as they taste better and more like the actual fruits. But what you didn’t know is that me and Jonny Jr. just tasted what might be the best lollipops we’ve ever had.
(pause for dramatic effect)
I didn’t blow your mind? Not impressing you enough? Do you KNOW how many lollipops I’ve had? And really, Jonny Jr.’s only 4, but he’s had his share too. About 2 weeks ago, I got an email from a mom and dad who own a company called “Yummy Earth”. I know. Don’t get me started, I was skeptical too. Their candy boasts a pretty stellar pedigree: all natural flavors, all organic, no artificial colors, gluten-free, etc. We were sent a boat load of samples – gummy bears, worms, hard candies, and lollipops. I was most interested in the gummies, which I tasted. They’ll be reviewed soon. However, when I looked at the Gigantor-sized bag of lollies, my interest was piqued:
Seriously, HOW many flavors are in there? A lot. Jonny Jr. picked the “Wet Face Watermelon”, and I had the “Sour Apple Tart”. Here’s the deal, short and sweet: I’ve never had a better sour apple hard candy flavor. And I’ve had them all. Sure, Jolly Ranchers are great, but these are REAL tasting. The pop was deep, sweet, and tart. And small, too-each of these lollies is only 22 calories, which is ridiculously low. J Jr’s watermelon (we shared) was just as good. The thing about that flavor was that I really felt like I was smelling the rind, which is an indescribable thing to wrap your head around, so I won’t try. All I know is that I was taken to the next level of fruit flavor accuracy, and I was blown away.
So what does this all mean? It’s confusing, right? Artificial candies, chock-full of crap and coloring, for the most part taste mediocre. Very often they taste like nothing. How is it possible that Yummy Earth has not only created the best tasting hard candies and lollipops but also the healthiest? Oh, and throw on top that there’s absolutely nothing artificial in them. Well, I’m sold. These will be a staple at my house going forward for sure. If for nothing else, the flavor, but the total package makes these a no-brainer.
Included in our care package was a bag of hard candies with flavors like mango, lemon, and others. The lemon is insane- again, it’s a deep, real accurate lemon with a ton of tart. The mango was delicious and sweet. But unlike a lot of other mango candy, this one had that faint tangy note that’s in the real fruit. Amazing. Also, their blood orange cocktail candies were spot on. I have to say, I wasn’t too into the grapefruit ones, despite grapefruit being one of my favorites. I know the flavors were real and natural, but for some reason it just didn’t translate as well as almost all of the others.
Let’s strip away the humor and sarcasm for one (brief) moment here. I don’t care if you’re a mom or a dad or a kid or Tim Lincecum (I love that kid!) or a chimp–Yummy Earth makes candies that you’ll want to eat. In every way, these deliver, especially in the taste department. They please the 4 year olds and the 40 year olds, so…there’s not much more to say about them. These rock. You can find them all over apparently, in place like Whole Foods. Check out Yummy Earth’s website and order directly from them. I promise you, you won’t be sorry. Grab the huge family-sized bag of lollies.
Oh, and if you need a Xmas/Kwanza/Channukah gift idea for me, grab me a bag. I’m hooked.