Eillien's Mixed Candy Corn

Eillien's Mixed Candy Corn

One of the best things about reviewing candy is that friends and family pick candy up for you while traveling. My mother-in-law brought this candy back from a recent trip to Wisconsin. I'd never heard of this brand before, so I was excited to learn more about the company and try some different candy. From their website, it looks like Eillien's has their own line of candy but also does private label candy too.  Private label is the candy you see with a chain store label on it. I could not find any specifics on the Eillien's branded candy, but I can tell you what I thought of it.

This isn't a normal bag of candy corn. I think Brach's is probably the best known maker of candy corn and while I love the flavor, I do like to branch out and try new things. There are three different color combinations in Eillien's candy corn. The normal yellow/orange/white color along with a brown/red/white and brown/yellow/white combination. The colors give this mix a nice Fall/Halloween/Thanksgiving feel and this candy would look great decorating a table at any time from September to November.

Eillien's Mixed Candy Corn

The brown/red/white combination has a nice apple flavor to it while the brown/yellow/white combination has a pumpkin taste to it. The yellow/orange/white tasted like "normal" candy corn flavor to us, but there's nothing on the package to tell you what flavors these are, so it left us guessing. This has a great candy corn texture, I like it a bit better than Brach's, it seems a little crisper when you bite into it. These are very sweet and very addictive. These were fun to try and I certainly wouldn't pass up free candy, it just seems to taste better. Thanks Mom!

Taste: 3/5 Liked It
Calorie Counter: 21 pieces = 1 serving= 150 calories, 0g fat
Price: Free Gift from mother-in-law
Eillien's Candies Web Site

Lemon Bug Lollipop

Lemon Bug Lollipop

We found this gigantic 2.2 oz, 3" diameter sucker at our local Wal-Mart. I've never tried the Hotlix Insect Lollipops, but I assume this sucker is trying to copy that idea. This isn't a real insect, instead it is a very realistic looking edible graphic. My SugarKid thought this was one of the coolest things he'd seen, but I'm sure candy like this has that effect on 6 yr. old boys.

I wasn't sure how this would taste since it is made in China and distributed by Galerie in Hebron, Kentucky. I'm not a big fan of candy made in China because what I've tasted is usually inferior in quality and taste. This sucker reaffirmed my opinion with its VERY LIGHT lemon yet heavy sugar/corn syrup taste. I thought it tasted like a bad cough drop, but again, my 6 yr. old SugarKid liked it. I don't think kids have much of a palate, so I wouldn't give his opinion very much weight. If this had a better lemon taste, I would have liked it because I'm a huge fan of citrus flavors. The other thing I didn't like about this novelty candy was the size. The sucker was so big and heavy, the stick waived from side to side under its weight.  How are you supposed to eat this thing? Like the Jelly Belly Wrecking Ball JawBreaker, I resorted to putting this in a plastic baggy and hitting it with a hammer. That broke this giant lollipop into nice edible pieces.

What this lollipop lacks in taste, it makes up for in novelty appeal. This would be a perfect item in a Halloween candy bouquet or some other Halloween decoration. The bug inside is pretty freaky and this has that Halloween feel to it. With the gigantic 3" size, you also have a very large item to decorate with which is nice at Halloween since most candy is fun-sized. So, good for decorating, bad for eating.....not the best combination, but at $1, it is a fun novelty candy.

Taste: 2/5 Did Not Like It
Calorie Counter: 1 Giant Lemon Insect Lollipop = 1 serving = 240 calories, 0g fat, 60g sugars
Price: $1.00 purchased at WalMart
Made in China and Distributed by Galerie

Goetze's Caramel Apple Cow Tales

Goetze's Caramel Apple Cow Tales - packaging

I know I've covered a lot of caramel apple candy in my last few reviews, but I couldn't resist reviewing one more. So far I've reviewed the Godiva Gems Caramel Apple Truffles, Caramel Apple Sugar Babies, and the Hershey's Kisses Caramel Apple. Each one of these candies is unique and brings its own special twist to the traditional caramel apple. These Cow Tales were in a change maker display box on the counter at the little convenience store at my work. They were priced 3/$1, so I took out my last two dollars and bought six. The guy at the checkout counter gave me an odd look and then he laughed when I told him, "It's for research."

Okay, using these for "research" is a bit of a stretch but I do review candy for fun and it's sort of like research, okay, maybe not. I'm a big fan of any Goetze's product and I've tried a few different versions over the years. I really enjoy the soft and chewy nature of their wheat based chews. This version is the same great wheaty exterior with a wonderful red delicious interior. One of my favorite things about Goetze's Caramel Creams is the creamy center. There's nothing like the chewy exterior of this product that gives way to a sugary sweet creamy interior that provides a bit of cooling feel to your tongue after you've been chewing these caramels. With this version, you get a nice apple flavored cream center that is fantastic. I really wish they'd make a frosting product I could buy because I'd put it on everything. This would be perfect on toast, peanut butter and jelly, oh the possibilities are endless! Okay, I might be getting a bit carried away but I really do love the flavor of this candy. It is an excellent variation on their normal product and perfect for the Fall/Halloween time of the year.

Goetze's Caramel Apple Cow Tales - inside

This product is also for sale from the Goetze's Candy Store.

Taste: 4/5 Really Liked It
Calorie Counter: 1 Cow Tale = 1 serving = 110 calories, 2g fat, 9g sugar
Price: $.33 purchased at local convenience store
Goetze's Web Site

Gummy Rat in Trap

Gummy Rat in Trap Packaging

Here's another great Halloween candy for the kids. My SugarKid went crazy over this when I brought it home. I thought it was pretty gross myself, but SugarKid couldn't leave it alone. He kept looking at it, as if he was trying to decide if the rat was real or not. He also tried squeezing, poking and prodding the gummy rat and I had to tell him to look but not touch because I still needed a picture.

We have previously reviewed Gummy Body Parts, which is another Frankford Candy & Chocolate Company product. This gummy rat was very similar in taste to the gummy body parts. It is the same squishy feeling gummy that isn't very dense at all. In fact, you could push into this rat's belly and your finger could go all the way through. The rat has a very flowery/fruity smell that sort of defeats the "gross" factor this candy is meant to give you.

The taste is very similar to the Frankford gummies we've had before. The rat had a nice fruity flavor that everyone in our family liked. It was pretty hilarious watching us pass around a gummy rat to take bites out of it, which brings me to an oddness we all felt with this candy. Where do you take a bite of it? That's the only thing that made this gummy feel "gross" to me. I couldn't see myself digging in and biting a huge chunk out of the rat tummy like a zombie would tear into a human. In the end we all settled on nibbling little bits of gummy off of the rat for our taste test. We all liked the flavor, although I wish this gummy was thicker, chewier and more dense than it was. I really didn't like the mushy gummy texture.

Gummy Rat in Trap

In the above photo you can see how this rat has some extra pieces of gummy attached to it. I was impressed with the gummy body parts by Frankford, but this rat needs more quality control. I like the mold of this gummy, complete with tail, little legs, blood etc... It has a great look and overall "rat" feel to it. I just wish they'd take some extra time at the factory in China to make sure these looked perfect before they went into the packaging.

Gummy Rat in Trap front photo

One final picture to leave you with. I almost felt sorry for this poor little gummy rat after looking at this picture. Then I smelled the fruity/flowery scent of its dead- looking gummy carcass and I nibbled off a leg and tail and enjoyed it very much.

Taste: 3/5 Liked It
Calorie Counter: 1/2 rat = 1 serving= 40 calories, 0g fat
Price: $.99 purchased at CVS Pharmacy
Frankford Candy & Chocolate Company Web Site

Jelly Belly Pet Tarantula

Jelly Belly Pet Tarantula in Packaging

One of the great things about starting a candy review web site is having an excuse to seek out and purchase all kinds of interesting candy to review.  For example, I wasn't even aware that Jelly Belly made gummy candy. We found this very interesting pet tarantula at a gift shop at the St. Louis Zoo. It was next to a Jelly Belly gummy alligator and rat. My 6 yr. old SugarKid picked this out and said, "We HAVE to review this Papa!" Well, I'm not one to turn down candy, or disappoint my kids, so we bought it and saved it to review close to Halloween.

There's something about Halloween that brings out the amazing array of gummy candy, especially gross gummy body parts or animals. This pet tarantula isn't very scary unless you are extremely afraid of spiders. It does blend right in with Halloween candy because this is the time of year that people bring out the spiders, skeletons and all kinds of different decorations. I was most surprised at how beautiful this gummy shape was. It's almost perfect with no dangling gummy parts or spare pieces from where it was cut. The detail was pretty good but this just looks great and screams of quality when you look at it. This is definitely a Jelly Belly product and it has a price that matches its beauty.

Jelly Belly Pet Tarantula

I did think twice about my comments above when I opened this package to taste it. When I cut the packaging I was greeted with an unpleasant smell that made me question if I wanted to taste this or not. I'm not sure what the smell was but it was bad. I pushed on and thought about Jelly Belly quality and their other products and figured the smell was something odd. It went away quickly after opening the package so I picked up the tarantula. WOW, this thing is heavy. I'm not used to super dense and heavy gummy products and this thing weighed a ton. I also looked over it to be sure my above comments on quality and beauty were accurate from looking outside of the package. This tarantula looks very, very good compared to other cheaper Chinese imported gummy candies I've looked at in the past. I can appreciate quality and nice looking candy and I don't even mind the premium price they bring.

This gummy was nice and chewy, soft but it had a nice dense feel to it. The taste was berry-like and was vague enough that we couldn't really find a particular flavor. After my initial taste I had to remind my SugarKid that this was candy and not a toy. He wanted to play with this candy rather than eat it. This would make a great gift for any child that likes gummy candy. It's more of a novelty candy than anything else, but the Jelly Belly name does mean this is a quality gummy that also looks beautiful.

Taste: 3/5 Liked It
Calorie Counter: 3.5oz bar = 1 tarantula = 120 calories, 0g fat
Price: $2.00 purchased at St. Louis Zoo gift store
Jelly Belly Confections > Novelties Web Site

Peeps Halloween Ghosts

Peeps Ghosts 2

I love how Just Born keeps innovating the Peeps line so that it has a design for every Holiday. These Halloween ghosts are pretty darn cool looking. Although I'm not a huge fan of Peeps as a confection, I love the background, history, cult-like following and great shapes they make Peeps in. Just look at the Peeps Store to see how far the love of Peeps goes. I love how these Peeps look like they are surrendering. I'm sure they are really saying BOO! but it's interesting how their arms are posed. You could just make a plain old ghost, but it's the little touches that make candy great in my opinion. In the end, this is sugar and I love sugar. I ended up putting these in some hot cocao, and they were the perfect marshmallow to add to that drink.  If you are a fan of Peeps, Halloween Peeps make the wait from Easter to Easter a little bit shorter.

Taste: 3/5 Liked It
Calorie Counter: 3 ghosts = 1 serving= 110 calories, 0g fat, 26g sugars
Price: $.99 purchased at Walgreen's
Peeps Web Site

Wack-O-Wax Mr. Stache

Mr. Stache Wack-O-Wax

Still trying to figure out what you'll be for Halloween? Always wanted to know how'd you look in a mustache? Then this candy is for you! I found this at Wal-Mart while looking at their novelty Halloween candy. I used to love eating Wax Lips and Nik L Nips wax bottles. I'm not sure what I liked about them, because this was a horrible candy, well, I'm not sure it's really a candy.

I was pleasantly surprised with the hint of grape smell when I opened this package. The mustache itself is pretty good looking and had a nice amount of detail to it. Everyone in our family had fun putting the bottom part in our mouths to hold it up under our noses to pretend we had mustaches. After we had all tried it on (the baby looked the funniest),  we took bites out of it. It tasted like wax. There's not much else to say except it tasted more like a candle than a Nik L Nip. There was a hint of grape and it was very chewy, but in the end it was still a giant piece of wax.

Mr. Stache Wack-O-Wax no packaging

I love the idea and wish it was made from gummy or something that was actually tasty. I liked the slogans on this wax candy though: "Chewable Disguise" and "Play Now, Chew Later!". That's some clever marketing right there, because we thought it was fun as a disguise, but probably wouldn't eat it, even if it were the last edible thing on earth. It was a fun Novelty though and I think that's more the point than the taste.

Taste: 2/5 Did Not Like It
Calorie Counter: 1 mustache = 1 serving= 10 calories, 0g fat, 3g sugars
Price: $.99 purchased at WalMart
Wack-O-Wax Tootsie Roll Industries Web Site

Godiva Gems Caramel Apple Truffles

Godiva Gems Caramel Apple Truffles Packaging

It's taken many years of practice but now I can see a "Limited Edition" candy from 50 yards away. The training was difficult and included endless walks down candy aisles, training my eyes to focus in like lasers on those two special words that usually signal a seasonal, new or different candy. The rewards are great and I've enjoyed many special edition candies over the years. I know it's not like training for the Olympics or anything, but I find a lot of fun in finding something new to try and review. I try to watch the press releases, faxes, emails and candy magazines for announcements of new candy that will be out, but I didn't see any press on this one. I previously reviewed the Godiva Gems Milk Chocolate Truffles and the Godiva Gems Dark Chocolate Caramels. I liked both of them and I really like the idea of Godiva offering new flavors in the Gems line throughout the year.

Caramel Apple flavored items are really popular in the Fall/Halloween season. I previously reviewed the Caramel Apple SugarBabies and the Hershey's Kisses Caramel Apple. Once you bite into this, you know right away that this is a Godiva product. It is a very nice quality chocolate that has a nice snap to it, which gives it a nice crunchy quality. It has a great melt and blends nicely with the caramel apple truffle interior. You taste the chocolate immediately and then you get the hint of caramel apple from the truffle inside. This smooth, melty almost light and whipped truffle filling has a very nice (but subtle) caramel apple flavor. It's not a "real" caramel taste but you can taste caramel and it doesn't seem fake. The apple flavor is definitely a green apple but it's not quite as tart as I would have liked it.  What I really liked about this truffle was the excellent aftertaste. This flavor stays with you for some time and the flavor is very, very pleasant. I could eat one, maybe two of these in a day, but I definitely can't go overboard with them like I could the Hershey's Kisses.  They are very satisfying.

Godiva Gems Caramel Apple Truffles Wrapped

Godiva's packaging for these Gems doesn't disappoint. It is exactly like the other Gems I've reviewed. It is tasteful, elegant and gives the product an upscale feel, even though you can find these at most pharmacy stores and also in Godiva Boutiques. I was worried that the Gems line would cheapen the Godiva name but I think they've done a great job of giving it that Godiva feel. I could easily stick a bow on this (okay, my wife could) and give this to someone as a gift.

Godiva Gems Caramel Apple Truffles

These are expensive at $4.99 per bag for 10 truffles, but worth it in my opinion. If you like the Hershey's Kisses Caramel Apple, I'd suggest giving these a try for a more upscale taste. They might be pricey, but the indulgence is worth it.  This is a seasonal candy that I will look forward to seeing again next fall.

Taste: 4/5 Really Liked It
Calorie Counter: 4 pieces = 1 serving= 190 calories, 11g fat, 18g sugars
Price: $4.99 purchased at CVS Pharmacy
Godiva Gems Web Site

Vampire's Blood - Sour Strawberry Spray Candy With Light

Vampire's Blood Strawberry Spray

This is one of the most interesting novelty candies I've purchased in the last year. I wanted to do a few more Halloween reviews and I'm a huge fan of vampire movies and TV shows, so I thought this would be fun to try. I also saw this candy mentioned in the new candy section of Candy Industry Magazine, so it was on my list of candy I "might" try some day.

I can see why this candy would be appealing to kids. LED light, Vampire's Blood, Sour Strawberry Flavor and it sprays right into your mouth. I wasn't happy with the fact that it is made in China, but lots of novelty candy is made there now. However, I'm still a little concerned about product safety and food or candy made in China.  The LED light is very cool (see photo below) and I like the retro vampire on the label of this candy.

Vampire's Blood LED light

Pump spray is an interesting and fun way to consume candy.  It takes a little boldness to squirt away.  When it is good, like the Mike and Ike Hot Tamale Spray I've already reviewed it can be really fun, but when it's not good, it's no fun at all.  The first mist of Vampire's Blood that landed in my mouth surprised the heck out of me. I can't really explain the sensation my mouth was feeling; disgust, pain, sourness, then horrible fake strawberry flavor, then back to disgust, disbelief, betrayal, and lastly shock. I downed some water and thought twice about trying it again. I did try it again and all I could write down was "horrible taste" in my review book.  I know I'm not the target audience for this candy but even my 6 yr. old SugarKid hated it. He rolled around on the floor and made a big scene on how terrible it was, complete with fake vomiting.  Maybe tween boys will love the flavor--or enjoy daring each other to take a few sprays of fake blood.   We are thinking this would make a great punishment for SugarKid if he used words he wasn't supposed to, sort of like how my parents used a bar of soap for me. I have to give this candy a rating of "1/5", 'hated it".  I rarely find a candy that deserves this rating...and I am sad as this is something that had so much potential to be so fun.


Vampire's Blood Pool of Blood

Taste: 1/5 Hated It
Calorie Counter: 1 bottle (are you serious? who would consume an entire bottle?) = 1 serving= 47 calories, 0g fat, 8.9g sugars
Price: $.88 purchased at CVS Pharmacy
Maxim Manufacturing & Marketing Company Web Site

Caramel Apple Sugar Babies

Caramel Apple Sugar Babies Box

Normally I do not buy Sugar Babies. It may sound odd for someone that reviews candy, but I really hate how Sugar Babies get stuck in my teeth. I must have purchased old and stale Sugar Babies in the past or maybe they changed the formula in this Fall/Halloween candy coated version, because these were the softest, tastiest, most amazing Sugar Babies I've ever had. I'm not exaggerating, this box was almost perfect.

I'm located in the Midwest now and caramel apples are very popular in this section of the United States.  For several years now I've enjoyed the rich and creamy caramel coating on a fresh picked tart green apple. I can't say that this candy replicates that flavor but it's a great addition to the Sugar Babies line in my opinion. It's odd that the apple is on the outside and caramel taste is on the inside, but you still get the idea of what they trying to accomplish with this candy.

Caramel Apple Sugar Babies Spill

The outside candy coating is nice and crumbly and has a very nice tart green apple flavor. I didn't think it was overly artificial or fake tasting, it tasted great to me. The inside of these had a nice caramel flavor. I thought they were sweet and somewhat creamy tasting. I enjoyed chewing these rather than letting them melt in my mouth.  Maybe that's what I did wrong with Sugar Babies in the past.  I see on several other reviews that they like to melt Sugar Babies instead of chomping on them. Hmm...I really like chomping them though. These were nice and chewy and when chomped, I thought it helped blend the two flavors together very well. I also like the nice grainy texture you are left with at the very end, although Sugar Mama did not like that at all. In the cross section picture below you can see the nice size of candy coated shell on top of the Sugar Baby. It wasn't too thick or too thin, I thought they added the perfect amount of shell.

Caramel Apple Sugar Baby Insides

I think I'm alone in my higher rating for this seasonal version of Sugar Babies versus the original. I found several other reviewers that didn't like these as much as I did. You can read those reviews at Candyblog, CandyAddict, Wisconsin Candy Dish and Sugarhog. This is one of those candies that I did NOT want to try because I don't like the original very much and was pleasantly surprised at how good these were. This also flies in the face of my Candy Tenant #1: It's hard to improve upon an original. In this case, I think Tootsie Roll Industries did a FANTASTIC job improving the original.

Taste: 4/5 Really Liked It
Calorie Counter: 22 pieces = 1 serving= 160 calories, 1g fat, 30g sugars
Price: $1.29 purchased at Walgreen's
Sugar Babies Website