On a recent vacation in southeastern Tennessee, in which I must have wandered starry-eyed through at least a dozen fudge and candy shops, I kept bumping into these Lollipops from Blanton’s Candies. When I’m on the prowl for new sweets, lollipops donâ€™t often register on my “intriguing candy” radar, probably because I prefer to chew my hard candies rather than suck on them. I find the crunch much more satisfying than the dissolve. But these lollipops caught my attention because of their beautiful, shiny appearance.
I loved the bright, cheerful, whimsical colors. When I picked one up for closer inspection, I noticed that all of the sticks were printed with the name and address of a local Tennessee candy company, Blanton’s Candies. I always like to try locally made treats, so I decided to sample a few of these lollipops. I had my choice of perhaps twenty varieties, but I picked only four: grape, orange cream, cotton candy, and candy corn.
My overwhelming impression? Holy cow, these are hard to eat!! Something about their big, barrel shape makes them incredibly awkward to maneuver. I could fit the whole thing in my mouth, but just barely, and after a moment, my jaw began to ache with the effort. Even though I’m not a novice lollipop eater, I kept drooling on myself when I pulled the lollipop out of my mouth to give my jaw a rest. I wonâ€™t confess how many times this happened, except to say that I might still be scrubbing lollipop stains out of my shirt if I hadn’t tucked a bib under my chin.
In addition to bracing yourself for an excess of drool, you should also know that your tongue will turn brightly colored, too. So the best time to eat one of these would be when you’re bumming around at home in old clothing, and not, say, before a job interview.
I had expected to like grape best since artificial grape is my favorite fruity candy flavor, but instead, orange cream easily won the contest. I could detect both orange and cream flavors, and, as I had hoped when I picked out this lollipop, it reminded me of an Orange Creamsicle. The other three flavors were less pronounced. Grape tasted right for the first ten minutes, but by the time I had sucked on it long enough for the stripes to fade, the grape flavor had begun to fade, too.
Cotton candy gave me a vague association of the boardwalk and summertime, but it was subtle. And I was disappointed by candy corn. I loved the idea (candy, flavored like a different candy!) but I could just barely detect the candy corn flavoring. Had I not known the flavor ahead of time, I’m not sure I would have been able to tell at all.
Because I saw these lollipops all over the place when I was in Tennessee, I thought for sure I would be able to track them down when I got back home. But instead, I discovered that Blanton’s Candies has zero web presence, and I mean absolutely flat-out zip-zilch 100 percent none. I could find the company’s name and address and phone number and hours listed in various online directories. I could even find a few scattered comments online about Blanton’s Candies products, but they donâ€™t maintain a website and there’s no information anywhere about where to buy these candies. If you’re in Tennessee, and perhaps some neighboring states, you’ll see them everywhere. Otherwise, you’re probably out of luck.