If there’s one thing I’ve learned since joining the Candy Addict staff it’s… well… it’s that any man, regardless of age, build, or boxer short selection is sexy in a tub full of jelly beans. But also that candy, despite its sweet nature, can be a very divisive subject. Sure, it’s hard to quibble over a Milky Way or gummi bear, but there are definitely a subset of treats capable of launching many an impassioned… shall we say… discussion. A discussion I bravely had with our esteemed writing staff and also a few well-respected friends in order to bring you (that’s right – you) our Top 10 Love ‘em or Hate ‘em Candies.
10. SALT WATER TAFFY
Love: Itâ€™s sooooo summer in America. You canâ€™t go to a beach town or amusement park and NOT eat it. Plus, itâ€™s so darn pretty, with its myriad colors, dots, and swirls.
Hate: It’s always so tempting with its endless flavors, but inevitably disappoints â€“ they all taste the same! And then it adds the extra gut-punch of pulling out your teeth.
9. CANDY HEARTS
Love: Distinct flavors, plus you have to love a candy that encourages kids to read.
Hate: Too chalky. One too many and you’re throwing up rainbows for the rest of the day.
Love: It can be sweet, and it’s an interesting flavor that brings more to your experience than just sugar. Plus, it’s good for your… ummm… digestion, we’re told.
Hate: “It’s not really sweet or salty or sour or anything describable by human beings. It just makes my tongue go all numb and then I can’t taste anything else for awhile.”
Love: It’s rich with lovely overtones and complexities, though it might be an acquired taste.
Hate: Overprocessed dark chocolate is usually too waxy or bitter.
“Blech. I like my chocolate creamy and sweet, not bitter and strong.”
Hate: “I never taste spice when I enjoy real cinnamon and never understood why cinnamon candy doesn’t taste like a snickerdoodle.”
“The overwhelmingly fake cinnamon flavor doesn’t do much for me – and why are hot candies always cinnamon? Real cinnamon is not hot at all.”
5. CADBURY CREME EGGS
Love: “I love to bite a small hole into it and suck all the sugary goodness out. Mmmmm.”
Hate: Why would you want to eat a candy that replicates a chicken fetus when you can eat a fully-formed marshmallow version?
“Way waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too sweet. They actually make my teeth hurt.”
4. CIRCUS PEANUTS
Love: “I’ve always loved the texture, from chewy to melty within a few seconds.”
Hate: “First, the texture and shape are reminiscent of styrofoam package filler. And are they supposed to have an orange flavor? Because they just taste like chemicals to me.”
“These things are just wrong on every level and were invented by parents to try to get their kids to stop eating candy.”
3. MARSHMALLOW PEEPS
Love: “I love the versatility – if you don’t want to eat them, stage scenes with them! Or, if you don’t like them fresh, eat them stale. Microwave them, freeze them, behead them, there are so many different ways to experience their sugary goodness.”
“They are so cute and lovable and squishy. I mean, what’s not to love? I love the crunchy exterior sugar coating and the soft, pillowy center.”
Hate: These have been bastardized by Just Born – whored out to every candy-worthy holiday and almost-holiday in America – thus obliterating their once-a-year appeal.
2. BUTTERED POPCORN JELLY BELLY JELLY BEANS
Love: They’re kind of a nice blend of salty and sweet and, despite an overwhelming majority of haters amongst the Candy Addict staff, they’re Jelly Bellyâ€™s number one selling flavor, if you can believe that.
Hate: “I hate these. HATE. They should be thrown in with Bertie Botts, with the rest of the disgusting flavors.”
“The flavor makes me want to be sick.”
1. CANDY CORN
Love: “Good memories of Halloween of yore; I like biting them into the three separate colors and eating them separately – the white is a little bit crumbly, the others are softer.”
Hate: “Candy corn is the bane of my existence. The best way I can describe candy corn is to have Lewis Black describe it for me:”
“The worst thing about Halloween is, of course, candy corn. It’s unbelievable to me. Candy corn is the only candy in the history of America that’s never been advertised. And there’s a reason. All of the candy corn that was ever made was made in 1911. And so, since nobody eats that stuff, every year there’s a ton of it left over. And the candy corn company sends the guys to the villages and they collect out of the dumpsters all the candy corn we’ve thrown away. They wash it!! They wash it!
I’ll never forget the first time my mother gave me candy corn. She said, “Here – Lewis, this is candy corn. It’s corn that tastes like candy”. [high pitched sound] This tastes like crap! And every year since then, Halloween has returned and I, like an Alzhiemer’s patient, find myself in the room, and the room has a big table in it, and on the table is a bowl of candy corn. And I look at it as if I’ve never seen it before. “Candy corn”, I think. “Corn that tastes like candy. I can’t wait.” Son of a b****!”
So I guess that about says it all. Thanks for all the great insight, Addicts! What do you think, readers? Which side do you fall on? What did we miss?