What are the very best hard candies?
May 1, 2009 9:15 PM   Subscribe

Looking for recommendations for high quality hard candies that a psychotherapist could leave out in a dish for clients. I'm thinking of fruit candies dusted with sugar, but other recommendations are welcome. I'm looking for something very classy and exquisitely tasty. Cost really isn't an issue.
posted by carterk to Food & Drink (34 answers total) 15 users marked this as a favorite
Werther's Original Hard Candies.
posted by fairmettle at 9:26 PM on May 1, 2009

I love those sugar dusted fruit candies.
posted by Acer_saccharum at 9:28 PM on May 1, 2009

How about some natural, or organic hard candies?

Anything without Corn Syrup, food dyes, or anything of that nature - many people are sensitive to them. I know I NEVER take candy anywhere if I don't know where its from because of this.

Maybe something sugarless too?
posted by strixus at 9:30 PM on May 1, 2009

How about Napoleon BonBon, the highest rated hard candy at Candy Blog?
posted by shinybeast at 9:39 PM on May 1, 2009 [4 favorites]

Something individually wrapped.
posted by evil_esto at 9:42 PM on May 1, 2009 [8 favorites]

Just a thought, but is there a regional or local favorite you could stock? Lots of independent candy shops out there when you look around...
posted by wfrgms at 9:42 PM on May 1, 2009

These gourmet, handmade stained glass candies would look awesome. Regular and sugar free in 18 flavors. Website and order form here!
posted by aquafortis at 9:44 PM on May 1, 2009 [2 favorites]

Maybe not high-end enough for you, but delicious:
See's Little Pops (mmm!)
See's Black Cherry Lollypops (I haven't tried these yet...)
posted by wintersweet at 9:52 PM on May 1, 2009

I'd prefer butter mints. Even better if you got the individually wrapped kind, though that might not be the visual effect you're going for.
posted by mullacc at 9:57 PM on May 1, 2009

Just make sure they are individually wrapped, especially in these days of pandemic terror.
posted by caddis at 10:09 PM on May 1, 2009

Ting Ting Jahe
posted by kuujjuarapik at 10:14 PM on May 1, 2009

nth-ing individually wrapped candies.
posted by NikitaNikita at 10:15 PM on May 1, 2009

Trader Joe's has these lovely little organic lollipops in natural flavors, which I love because they're slightly tart rather than overly sweet. Lollipops aren't necessarily classy, but they are deserving of an elevated place in the comfort/nostalgia food hierarchy along with the ubiquitous cupcake, and sucking on a lollipop is incredibly soothing.

(seriously the pomegranate ones oh my god)

It would be neat if you switched it up every now and then. My therapist has nifty little mints out and I look forward to them (what? I like candy) but I'd get a kick out of knowing there could be a surprise awaiting me.
posted by padraigin at 10:17 PM on May 1, 2009

Werther's Original Hard Candies.

Costco has a big-ass bag of these mixed with even more tasty fruity wrapped candies.

This bag is essentially designed for receptionists to stock the candy bowl.
posted by mrt at 10:20 PM on May 1, 2009 [1 favorite]

here's the bag.
posted by mrt at 10:23 PM on May 1, 2009 [1 favorite]

Maybe La Vie Bonbons?
posted by gudrun at 10:23 PM on May 1, 2009

Perugina (same maker as the Italian chocolate bars) makes nice hard candies. Some places online appear to be offering them in bulk. Note that the "glacia mints" are very strongly ("icy") flavored. The fruit flavored and coffee ones are excellent, there's also a very good "egg nog" flavored one that I forget the Italian name for.

I'm still peeved at World Market for leaving my area, but if you have one nearby, they're a standard destination for European candy. Ethnic groceries may have eastern European candies from Croatia, Poland or Russia (although I think the Croatian ones are kind of "ordinary" flavored, not special).

Better Asian markets should have candies from China and Japan, or if you're lucky, more exotic ones from Malaysia or Indonesia in interesting tropical flavors like soursop, or--if you want to challenge people--durian.

For guaranteed crowd-pleasers, though, I'd go with the Perugina.
posted by gimonca at 10:24 PM on May 1, 2009

Japanese candy is always interesting!


Honestly, though, what I want to suck on are those Vitamin C drops sold cheaply at Walgreen's. I am not a big candy person, but before I talk for long periods of time I like to suck on something that will soothing.
posted by xammerboy at 10:28 PM on May 1, 2009

Rossana by Perugina, that's the one I was thinking of.
posted by gimonca at 10:29 PM on May 1, 2009

You can't stop eating these Gummis:

posted by xammerboy at 10:32 PM on May 1, 2009

Response by poster: Thank you all so much for all the great suggestions. My wife treats people in some pretty stressful situations- I thought that if clients could expect a tiny little comfort like a really great candy, it might make coming in to her office that much more tolerable. We'll definitely be trying some of these!
posted by carterk at 10:39 PM on May 1, 2009

Canada Mints, in 3 flavors: wintergreen, spearmint and peppermint.
Sanded hard candies from Vermont Country Store or End of the Commons, in flavors like lemon, licorice, anise, clove, cinnamon, sassafras, cherry.
For wrapped candies, Werther's are good, but they're everywhere, so...Ting Ting Jahe (strong ginger) is good. A good candy store that has bulk bins, one price per pound, will give you some interesting candy for not too much money
Those teeny Italian candies, licorice mint flavor, I think, are excellent.
Salt water taffy~mmm, good.
Barley sugar candies are great, very smooth.
When I was 5 my grandma asked me if I had a sweet tooth. I told her "Grandma, all my teeth are sweet." That was 60 years ago. Still true today.
posted by davoid at 10:56 PM on May 1, 2009 [1 favorite]

Does it have to be hard candies? How about cordials? As I'm used to using the word, it's chocolate covered. Inside that is crystalline sugar, and inside of that is some sort of liquid, strongly flavored, often tasting like some sort of liqueur.

They're about half the size of malt balls, and candy stores sell them in bags.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 11:09 PM on May 1, 2009

I'm surprised that no one's mentioned the fantastic coffee-flavoured Hopjes yet. They aren't terribly difficult to find in gourmet food stores. As an alternative, if you have access to a Viet or Thai supermarket, you'll definitely be able to find AmeriCafe or Kopiko candies, both of which are just as delicious.
posted by thisjax at 11:33 PM on May 1, 2009 [2 favorites]

I think variety is important here. Not everyone likes mint, or chocolate, or coffee, or fruit flavored things, so the more options (within reason), the more likely people are going to find what they like.
posted by oceano at 11:48 PM on May 1, 2009 [1 favorite]

My parents had a deli where they sold candy that looked like real seashells. The closest I can find is the top listing on this page. They're chocolate, but there are plenty of other seashell candies (including hard) when you search on Google. Most other varieties look a little less classy (in my opinion), but would probably be less likely to be mistaken for real shells and therefore ignored!
posted by hellogoodbye at 11:48 PM on May 1, 2009

These (Chipurnoi Glitterati) tiny Italian candies are beautifully wrapped and seem to be perfect for what you need. They're delicious. I found them at a local restaurant and looked them up to buy a bunch. Fruit flavored hard candies.
Damn, now I wish I had some in the house!
posted by artdrectr at 12:04 AM on May 2, 2009

I recommend (individually wrapped) mints and Hall's-type cough drops, in both sugared and sugar-free varieties. People in therapy talk a lot, causing dry throat, dry mouth & bad breath. Mints and cough drops taste good, too.
posted by theora55 at 6:38 AM on May 2, 2009

posted by Lanark at 8:53 AM on May 2, 2009

I'm seconding the person who recommended "Ting Ting Jahe", Indonesian ginger candy - also available very cheaply in most Asian grocery stores. These semi-soft candies can be chewed or sucked, for people with dental issues. They're not very spicy in the sense conventionally associated with ginger, and are great for alleviating dry mouth, hoarseness or upset stomach. The major content of the candy is cooked ginger and tapioca, with little added sugar and no artificial additives or fat.

They come in individual elegantly patterned and folded wrappers, plus the otherwise sticky candy is wrapped in edible rice paper. If you didn't know they were made from ginger, you would just enjoy the warm, comforting and yet tantalizing flavor. You can dissolve them in hot water to make ginger tea!
posted by patience_limited at 8:47 PM on May 2, 2009

Campino are really tasty, come individually wrapped, and have a sugar-free version that is also yummy
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 2:06 AM on May 3, 2009

I'm quite fond of the stained glass candies here. They make a honey flavor that is wonderful, but sadly it's seasonal and not available right now - but if I were you I'd keep my eye out for it. They're also great for a public candy dish because of the individual wrapping.
posted by polymath at 9:15 AM on April 30, 2010

i had these at a bar and they were really great. so great i spent like, an hour tracking them down so i could buy some myself. they're smooth and slightly tart and i can't get enough of them.
posted by koroshiya at 11:10 AM on April 30, 2010

These are not classy nor expensive, but one of the best lollipops I've had... They are also organic with interesting flavors (like pomegranate):

YummyEarth Organic lollipops
posted by flowerpig at 11:48 PM on April 30, 2010

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