344 Beaver Street
Tues - Sat 10-5
Wed til 8
Greetings fellow candy lover!
A beautiful month ahead - flowers are in bloom, temperatures are warming, Mother's Day is almost here, we're salivating for our (rapidly) upcoming Root Beer Tasting and the national candy show (All Candy Expo) takes place. So before you shut your eyes to clear them of pollen or short out your keyboard from the sweat of your spring fever, read on fellow candy lover...
|Root Beer Tasting - The Sequel
The root to a man's heart is through his mug
The date has been set, the media has been alerted and the final selections are in.
Yes, we are teasing you with
Virgil's Bavarian Nutmeg (pictured at left), imported from Germany, but no, we won't actually be
tasting it (sorry - we'll leave that to you to purchase and put aside for that special occasion). We do, however, have a fantastic roster of other noteworthy candidates. The esteemed lineup you see to the right (which would probably produce fewer errors than the Pirates) will be decanted for your tasting enjoyment. BUT ONLY IF YOU REGISTER (see note below).
Come on in and try these complex beers of a root kind on Saturday, May 3, from 5:30 to 6:30.
Register (you simply must) by clicking HERE for this unique event. Or you can just email Village Candy and put ROOT BEER as the subject.
|Mother's Day Will Soon Be Here
And Fran's Salted Caramels have already arrived
OK, maybe your mom isn't June Cleaver, but she's not Joan Crawford either. Let her know how much you appreciate her delivering you into this world (and not charging a shipping fee) with candy, the sure path to any mom's heart.
And that's where Fran comes in. Who's Fran, you might ask (and you will)? Well, I have a sister Fran, but she's not the one who started Fran's Chocolates Ltd. of Seattle (though she is a great cook in her own right). A visit to Paris inspired Fran Bigelow with a European-like passion for pure and simple (yet exquisite) ingredients. She opened her first patisserie and chocolate shop twenty-five years ago to share this philosophy. She has been credited by many for sparking the artisan chocolate renaissance in the U.S. and is considered one of the best chocolatiers in the nation. From the way the chocolates are presented in their gorgeous gift boxes to savoring the first bite of one of her creations, it is a pleasure to welcome Fran's Chocolates to Village Candy.
Which leads me to a question several customers ask: "Do you carry the new salted caramels that everyone is talking about." I am obviously not a part of the "everyone" of which they speak, because I have no idea what they mean. But I do now! Fran (again, of Seattle, not my sister) describes her Salted Caramels as a harmonious blend of complex
flavors that is an intricate dance between their smooth chocolate, her
buttery caramel and the unexpected boldness of her gray and smoked
salt. As with all Fran's confections, each ingredient is hand-selected and
paired perfectly with their single origin chocolate to reveal its own
unique and mesmerizing taste characteristics.
Fran's Gray Salt Caramels, delicately packed in an exquisite bow-tied wisteria box, contain soft butter caramel drenched in 56% dark chocolate and sprinkled with gray sea salt harvested off the Brittany Coast. Their Smoked Salt Caramels, hand set in a luxurious lemongrass box (above), contain the same small-batch caramel, but are instead dipped in rich milk chocolate and lightly sprinkled with sea salt smoked over Welsh oak, offering a sweet and complex flavor. In addition, Village Candy offers Fran's Milk & Dark Caramel/Nut Gift Box, a 21 piece selection (left) of Fran's Classic Caramels, award-winning salted caramels and organic Almond Trios dipped in dark and milk chocolate, along with a 6 piece box of Dark Chocolate Imperiale Truffles. If you love chocolate and/or caramel, you'll love Fran's.
Mo's Bacon Bar is back - in a new, smaller size
When our initial shipment of Mo's Bacon Bars arrived from Vosges Haut Chocolate, I was skeptical. Chocolate and bacon? Sounded a little gross (to me) and muy over-decadent. But leave it to the artisans at Vosges to pull off this sinful combination of applewood smoked bacon, alder wood smoked salt and deep (41% cacao) milk chocolate. Who'da thunk? And now we have them in the more manageable half ounce mini bar.
|BTP (by the pound) Candy Corner|
Jawbreakers - individually wrapped
One of Village Candy's most popular sweets is the humungous jawbreaker. We have sold roughly 800 of these 2-1/4" sugary, multicolored orbs since opening, and they remain a favorite. These individually- priced cavity-causers have been supplied to us by Jelly Belly Candy Company since day one.
Though we continue to stock these, Village Candy is now also offering smaller, more manageable mandible-assaulting spheres, by weight, individually wrapped and made by The Ferrara Pan Candy Company, the company that made them famous.
The origination of the jawbreaker name is a little hazy. The term first appeared in the English language in 1839, used to mean a "hard-to-pronunce word." Later it was used as a slang or derogatory term for a dentist, who at the time probably richly deserved their own slang or derogatory term.
These colorfully curious candies are known as gobstoppers in the UK, derived from the slang for mouth (gob). Nestle's Willy Wonka Candy Company was the first to trademark that name in 1976, after the Everlasting Gobstoppers of Roald Dahl's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
Jawbreakers are made by slowly depositing layers onto a core (such as a single sugar grain or anise
seed). They're formed in large, rotating, heated pans. The
candies take several weeks to manufacture, as the process of adding
liquid sugar is repeated multiple times (more than 100 times over two
weeks to produce a one inch ball). Color and flavor are also added
during this panning process.
A 2004 episode of Discovery Channel's MythBusters demonstrated that heating a jawbreaker in a microwave oven can cause the inside to heat at different rates, yielding an explosive spray of super hot candy when compressed - crew members Adam Savage and Christine Chamberlain received light burns after a jawbreaker exploded. WARNING: DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME!
|Ever Been "BeanBoozled?"
The latest from Jelly Belly
Are you ready to be BeanBoozled™? Jelly
Belly's wildest collection dares you to compare some of their tastiest,
most popular flavors with their craziest ones. But here's the catch - you
won't know which ones are which!
The black Licorice bean looks exactly
like the Skunk Spray bean! Sweet, luscious Caramel Corn might also be
Moldy Cheese. You may think you're tasting their world-famous Buttered
Popcorn bean, but what you'll be biting into could actually be Rotten
Egg. The only way to find out what beans you're getting is to eat them!
The Jelly Belly BeanBoozled™ collection
currently contains 10 colors of beans, and 20 flavors (10 "real" ones
and 10...well...different ones). You can make a fun, and somewhat
hair-raising, game out of it by giving your friends beans of the same
color and seeing which flavors they get. But don't be a chicken - you
have to participate too. Just try not to get BeanBoozled™!
Editor's note (that'd be me): If you aren't aware by now, Jelly Belly and Harry Potter's J.K. Rowling have parted ways, meaning no more Bertie Botts. But weep not o' seeker of foul flavored flotsam, a new venue in which to package their grossest flavors has arrived!
|Play the Candy Alphabet!
New feature this month...
Every issue of this Candygram (at least for the next 26) will feature a letter of the alphabet exactly as it appears on a candy wrapper. The first person to correctly identify it via email will win FREE candy (and don't worry, it'll be something good - at least we think so, and we know). The wrapper image may not be of a confection we carry, but it will be a treat you've seen before, and we will always provide the answer the following month.
It's fun, it's nostalgic, it's intellectual. And if you use the link near the bottom of our newsletter, you can spread the good cheer to ALL you friends and enemies.
|Don't forget to mark your calendars for Saturday, May 10 - May Mart in Sewickley.
New (and news) from the candy front
I will once again be attending this year's national candy show in Chicago (n'ya, n'ya), and will have a full report in next month's issue on what to expect re: all things candy in the upcoming year...
Village Candy is an old-time, new-fangled retail shop specializing in customer service, a unique selection of retro, bulk and novelty candy, artisan chocolates, glass-bottled pop and candy-themed gifts.
We are here Tuesday thru Saturday 10 am to 5 pm, but on Wednesdays we stay late until 8! We are closed Sunday and Monday.
Doug Alpern, Proprietor