I've been thinking about candy for a couple of reasons, one of which I'll share next week and one I'll share now.
For some reason, the small town I live in made the decision years ago that if Halloween fell on a weekend, the night for kids to trick-or-treat would be Friday. As a result, my youngest son went out last night for a candy haul. In a way, this is nice, especially since the weekend is not disrupted. On the other hand, savvy (or conniving, depending on your stance) children and their parents from other parts of the county will commute to our town to get a start on their sugarhoards before their own candy grabbing on the 31st. I can't really complain much since my sons will be going to Delaware to visit my ex and doing the trick-or-treating scene there on Sunday.
So with buying and distributing and eating and thinking about candy, I thought I would come up with my all-time top five candy list. The only criteria here are that they have to be wrapped. I like fine chocolates and handmade stuff and all that. I'm only considering candy you could pick up at a gas station or convenience store.
I also thought about doing ten but 1. I don't feel like putting a huge amount of time in this and 2. when I was thinking about this, I sort of felt like once you got out of the top handful, it was really an issue of mood. I wouldn't always put number 10 behind number nine or even six. So we'll go with five.
5. Kit Kat Dark - A sleeper in the candy world as Hershey has only issued it in limited-editions. The Kit Kat is one of those candy bars that doesn't seem like anything special and you can almost wonder why anyone would choose it over other candies. The dark chocolate, though, turns it into a top five candy bar for me, though.
A local pastor goes through town every Thursday and hands out little candy bars with small sermons related to the candy bar attached to them. He introduced me to the Kit Kat Dark when it was the candy of the week. So by definition it has to be good.
4. Peanut Chews - Originally a product of Goldenberg's and now made by Just Born, this is a regional candy but one I have always enjoyed. For me, the high point of Halloween (arguably my least favorite day of the year) now is that my youngest son hates these things and so I get any that he receives trick-or-treating. They, too, are dark chocolate.
3. Reese's Peanut Butter Cups - Undoubtedly would hold the top spot if not for the fact that I find them addictive and either find myself craving more after eating a pack, or eating more than one pack and making myself sick. This lose-lose situation prevents a higher ranking.
2. Take 5 - An almost perfect package of deliciousness. Pretzel, caramel, peanuts, peanut butter, chocolate. Salty, sweet, crunchy, smooth. It doesn't get any better.
1. Good Stuff - Oh yes it does. At least it once did. A company called Grist Mills made Good Stuff in the early nineties. They sold for a quarter a piece when you could find them which, in North Carolina, was impossible. I even wrote the company trying to find somewhere in the state to find them.
My junior year of college, I traveled with my school's baseball team to spring training as I was the statistician. We went by van down to Florida and we stopped at a gas station in Georgia late at night to fuel up and get some caffeine. I went in and there in all it's neon blue glory was a box of Good Stuff candy bars. I bought the entire box. I only ever found them one other time after that.
Much like the Take 5, it was a mix of things. Caramel, chocolate, chocolate chips, peanut butter, and either or both rice crispies and oats. It was almost like a chocolate covered granola bar but didn't have the thick, chewy consistency you get with them.
Ugh. I'm feeling sick writing about candy so early. More about candy (and other food) in a few days.