Yesterday, my buddy Ivon and I started reminiscing about the stuff we used to eat growing up – chocolates, candies, weird slushy-like beverages sold in blood bag-like containers accompanied by straws so sharp they could be used as weapons. So, today, we decided to check out one of Toronto’s premiere shops for classic treats, and then some: Sweet Addictions Candy Co on Dundas Street West.

We must have circled the aisles a half-dozen times, recognizing old favorites, noting new offerings, and filling our handy shopping basket as we went.  By the time we were done, THIS was our haul…

We headed back to Ivon’s place where we proceeded to sample everything we’d bought while Akemi filmed our reactions (Video presently being edited.  Stay tuned!).  We divided our sugar and salt buffet into three categories –

CHIPS

The chicken tikka masala chips certainly tasted like chicken tikka masala, but not a very good version in my opinion.  Although I had high hopes for the cheese fondue, we both gave it a thumbs down as we were expecting more of a cheddar flavor and got blue cheese instead.  The Burts’ Guinness were some mighty fine chips – thick cut and crunchy – that, unfortunately, didn’t really taste much like Guinness. Finally, the Combos 7 Layer Dip Tortilla tasted very much like 7 layer dip tortilla, particularly the gross sour cream topping I hate so much.  Unlike me, Ivon was a huge fan and I’m sure won’t have any problem finishing off the bag for dinner.

CHOCOLATES

Boy, I have fond memories of the Flake chocolate bars I used to eat for lunch in my youth, easily accessible and delicious mini-meals readily available at the chocolate warehouse my buddy Cas and I would clean on weekends.  And, I must say, they’re just as good as they ever were.  Another winner was the Zero bar, winning points for taste and texture (although Ivon preferred the milk chocolate).  They’re somewhat reminiscent of those weirdly delicious Icy Squares we’d get every Christmas.  The peanut butter Kit Kat was fine, though it gets points for offering a touch of salt to balance the sweet.  The Snickers white was equally fine, but I can’t help but think it would have been improved with a battering and deep-frying. Finally, that Googoo bar?  Where have you been all my life?

CANDIES

I’ve never been a fan of sour candies, but I had to get the SweeTarts because, well, they take me back – yet they’ve still to win me over.  Nerds, on the other hand, were surprisingly good, bursting with berry flavor the package claims is artificial-free…but I remain unconvinced.  Ivon swore by the Pink Candy Popcorn when he was a kid but, apparently, has outgrown these stale circus offerings.  Pop Rocks, on the other hand, remain as awesome as ever – an effervescent, snap-crackle-popping treat.  Showing equal staying power was Bottle Caps.  Although the size and shape of the caps has changed, the root beer version is as good as ever, and the cola possibly even better!  Not as much love from for the Haribo Happy Cola gummies that I found so tough to chew my jaw was already sore thirty seconds in. Finally, the Fun Dip.  In retrospect, it’s more about the experience of dipping the stick in the various powdered flavors – and that’s just as fun as it ever was.  The butter rum Lifesavers were a list second impulse buy – and one of the only items I actually kept for myself once we were done.  I’m a lifelong fan.  Ivon isn’t.

GUM

What the hell happened to Gold Mine Nugget Bubble Gum?  For some reason, I remember it being closer to gold in color than the present canary yellow.  I also don’t recall it tasting like medicinal banana syrup.  Not good.  Thrills, on the other hand, has not changed much (and whether that’s a positive or negative really depends on your take on this weird rosewater-based gum).  In fact, the packaging proudly proclaims “It still tastes like soap!”  That it does, that it does.  “It’s the cilantro of gum!”according to Ivon.

By the time we were done, I was thoroughly exhausted and, to be honest, ready for bed.

At 4:00 p.m.

Next week, we’re going to put a half dozen of Toronto’s best burgers to the test!

And, on a totally unrelated note, you can actually order one of these on Amazon –

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Scifirulesnow

Can’t chew Haribo candy. Had a free package as a VIP member at a grocery store.

gforce

Around here, the blood bags of red liquid (ostensibly “Fruit Punch”) with the stabby straw were called “Mini-Sips”, and were a lunch box staple. Great fun was had after drinking them by inflating them with the straw, then punching the straw through the other side, keeping the air in – then jumping on them with the surprisingly loud BANG! Good times.

We must have had very similar childhood tastes in candy, as those were all my favourites too. I always found that SweeTarts were not nearly enough of either, but I loved, LOVED Bottle Caps. Especially root beer and cola! Pop Rocks were, are, and ever will be amazing. The Pink Popcorn was always gross.

Do you remember Love Hearts, which were also one of my favourites at the time. I’ve tried the newest version, and they seem very meh to me. Vaguely sweet with not much flavour. Maybe it’s just my age.

And Butter Rum Life Savers are still the best.

Tom "Con Curmudgeon" Gardiner (@Thogar)

I hate candy because I love it so much, especially chocolate, that I can’t help myself if it’s in the house. Those butter rum Lifesavers remind me of Christmas and how my dad and I were the only ones who liked them. It was “our” candy and I really loved that as a kid.

Totally unrelated note huh?

Y’know, I was wondering why that AED doesn’t have 100% 5-star ratings. I mean, if it works it saves your life, if it doesn’t, you’re not around to put in a 1-star review.

glowyzoey
glowyzoey

Memories! That Pink popcorn was awful a hundred years ago when I was a kid. lol Loved the Flake bars. No Mojos? Pop rocks?

Jess T.

This post brings back the nostalgia for me smile My grandma would take me to the gas station and buy me 6 feet of bubblicious bubblegum tape and a stick of necco wafers and i was the happiest kid on earth. the funny thing now is that i probably couldn’t tell TUMS and neccos apart.

maggiemayday

Oh man, butter rum Lifesavers, soooo good. Pretty sure I have had an oogoo at some point in my life, it sounds familiar. I like sweet tarts around Halloween, no other time. White chocolate Snickers? Barf.

In odd serendipity, I picked up a roll of Necco wafers today on a whim. That’s a way back candy for me. Now to find an Idaho Spud, a Big Cherry Mountain, and one of those tri-color coconut things. I know Skybar, with all the different pockets of fillings is no more. So sad.

Sylvia
Sylvia

The oogoo looks like googoo cluster.

Duptiang
Duptiang

Nice entry as I am sucking down some Hershey’s mini special dark chocolate pieces as I am reading the latest.

cat4444
cat4444

Loved butter rum lifesavers and zero bars. Sweet tarts are okay. I remember the gold mine gum as little gold nuggets, too. Thrills really did taste like soap. Bleah. Never have actually had pop rocks, and can’t say I’ve even heard of the rest, except for the pink popcorn. But what about mojos and pep chews and jelly tots? Not to mention the 5 and 10 cent cost.

gforce

Did you like the occasional Cherry Blossom? smile

https://youtu.be/QRomts0RO3c

Drea C Newscience101
Drea C Newscience101

Childhood comfort treats and trips down memory lane are always fun.

I miss the Bazooka bubble gum
that was available at the corner candy story where I grew up.
Neighbors Ethel & her son Dave owned the local candy & soda shoppe
on the west side in my hometown, back then.
Each Bazooka only cost a single shiny copper U.S penny (1 cent)
and each came with an individual comic strip inside.
Once you collected enough comic strips
you could redeem them via postal mail for fun little items.
I ended up with a magnifying glass, mini binoculars, spy glass and a spin top toy
after saving up all my comics for a 2 years
and convincing a small handful of friends to give me all their comics, as well.
One of my neighbors and I used to go through the couch cushions
at each others houses to find pennies
then proceed to walk down the street toward the candy store
with our heads facing down,
so we could keep our eyes peeled for more stray pennies.
Those bazookas were hard as hell to chew and soften.
Albeit once you finally got it to the right consistency
the bubble blowing contests and fun would commence.
I remember once a schoolmate
who decided to chew 4 pieces of bazooka all at once.
She blew a bubble so big
it covered her entire face and the bangs of her hair when it popped.
For the next few weeks we all took turns
laughing at her new (no choice-emergency) hair cut style
and how much she complained her jaw ached
from trying to chew all four pieces at once.
More than a handful of decades later
and my jaw still hurts just thinking about it.
… And I wasnt even the one who attempted the fool hardy death defying feat!

When Bazooka Company finally raised the suggested retail price
to 2 cents in the early 70s
my whole town got its panties up in a bunch
and started screaming about inflation and the high cost of living. grin grin grin

Tammy Dixon
Tammy Dixon

smile

Larry D
Larry D

Did the original packaging say “Tastes Like Soap”? And does Turkish Taffy ring any bells?

Jayenkai [JNK] (@Jayenkai)

Walkers?..
I thought PepsiCo had them branded as Lays’, over there?

Tammy Dixon
Tammy Dixon

So Ivon’s like me and thinks cilantro tastes like soap? It’s difficult dining out without having cilantro forced in every dish. It’s the new fad. sad

I remember fun dips and zero bars! Do you remember Pop Rocks? Yahoo was always a big favorite of my, too. Pixie sticks, candy cigarettes, candy necklaces and remember that gum that had liquid inside? Good times, good times….

bambamfans

Wow, that’s my kind of shopping trip. For me it would have included Jelly Tots, Twisties, Fruit Tingles, Sunnyboys/Razz, Fantales, Flake, Jaffas and musk sticks.

Whenever I’m on holiday I fill my suitcase with Canadian candy to bring back for family & friends.

Looking forward to the video.

Cheers. Chev

Drea C Newscience101
Drea C Newscience101

Does anyone here remember “Bit O’ Honey” Candy bars that were popular in the mid-late 70’s?
This little trip down memory/candy lane has stirred up a craving for one.
I see they still sell it online but unfortunately it seems
only available for purchase in large bulk.

PBMom

Razzles were missing from that. They seem to be back in fashion again. Lots of cool things in this catalog: https://www.vermontcountrystore.com/specialty-shops/category/brands-from-the-past?

Lemon Up and Gee Your Hair Smells Terrific (minus the gross product that was actually used back in the 1970’s. Also perfumes from the past, toys, things your mother used to wear around the house.

Turkish Taffy was good.

This is the link exclusively to candy.

https://www.vermontcountrystore.com/candy/category/candy-top-rated

https://www.vermontcountrystore.com/candy/category/new-candy

https://www.vermontcountrystore.com/home/category/home-office Provides princess line phones and other corded telephones.

I always love looking through their catalog at Christmas seeing all the things I’d love to buy but I resist because I know I alone would be eating the stuff and carrying the calories. Right now I’m trying to lose this weight I’ve gained, so bad idea.