I like it when candy catches my attention, as it’s made to stand out with it’s brightly colored packaging, fun shapes and delicious flavors. Sour Punch Straws have fallen under my radar again in the past few days, as I’ve been seeing them in the news and on a few commercials on TV. My new roommate called me in from the other room to come watch as one played during one of her favorite shows. I find it interesting how people latch onto my candy obsession so quickly. Regardless, all this buzz about “new and improved” flavors of this classic candy certainly made me curious and eager to get some to try.
I was lucky enough to get my hands on some of the new Zappin’ Apple flavor of Sour Punch. I’ve eaten this flavor before, even though I’ve only officially reviewed the Strawberry flavor for The Candy Enthusiast, and have enjoyed it. If you recall from my other Sour Punch article, I ate them with my college roommate, which is probably the last time since I had the apple variety. Trust me, it’s not as far away as you might think.
I like how even though the flavor has been tweaked, the packaging has not. I like being able to enjoy the same graphic design as always, it’s a very iconic style to me and I’d hate it if it was altered in any way.
The straws come neatly packaged and protected in their tray, and they smell wonderfully fruity, floral and tart. There’s a slight, but appealing artificial edge to it. They look beautiful with a nice bright green color with the sanded sugar coating.
The texture is wonderful. The straws feel thick and chewy without tiring out my jaw. There’s good resistance to my chewing and they have good staying power in my mouth, as they don’t dissolve right away or get sticky.
The sour has a good punch (ha ha) to it from the sugary coating. It’s strong, yet, it comes across authentically, like a tart granny smith apple. The flavor is much more fruity and juicy than the aroma suggests. I was afraid I’d be getting the standard Jolly Rancher apple flavor, but thankfully I don’t. I really enjoy the tart/sweet and intense/mild flavor play here.
As soon as I finished my package, I found this cute video featuring a tween using a Sour Punch straw as, well, a straw. I’m a little baffled that I didn’t think of that myself.
Even though I don’t have some of the “before” Sour Punch straws to compare, I have to say that I really like where the new Zappin’ Apple flavor is headed (as in straight into my mouth to be eaten!). Usually when a company plays with flavors and formulas, the end result is sub par (I’m looking at you Hershey’s products and Runts!) but I am happy to say these new version is better than the original.
Rating: Will Eat Again
Links Sour Punch Straws Website
In the the colorful Easter candy smorgasbord that I found in Wal-Mart where I bought the Gimbals jelly beans I reviewed earlier, I came across these beauties. There were a package in each color group, and I spent a good 15 minutes examining all the different flavors. The green package help sour apple and pear; the pink strawberry, cherry and watermelon; blue was blueberry and blue raspberry; orange was orange, tangerine and peach…I don’t remember exactly. Looking back on this I should have written them down.
As you can see, I chose the yellow bag with Lemon Meringue, and Pineapple and Buttered Popcorn flavors. It was the first two flavors that sold me on this assortment.
The bag smelled wonderfully fragrant of fresh lemons when I opened it. So appealing. I liked the originality of these sours. The shapes is so cute with the bunnies hunched over on all fours. The form is nice with bright colors and a nice coating of granulated sugar. Despite the fact there’s three flavors, I had a hard time telling them apart. One is much lighter in color and more opaque, and the rest all look the same. So I picked up a bunny to taste and let the flavor surprise me.
The texture is very thick and chewy. It’s a little hard to eat since it sticks to your teeth right away. It takes a bit of chewing and or sucking to get the candy to finally dissolve, so it’s very satisfying.
Pineapple: Wonderfully juicy and zesty and authentically pineapple. I get the sweet, fruity tropical flavors along with the zest of the pine. I felt like I was drinking the syrup out of a canned pineapples. the sourness is a perfect balance that is loyal to the real thing. So good.
Lemon Lime: Very tart and zesty, with the sweetness of lemon and that very bitter bite of lime. Authentic and wonderfully flavorful. The sourness does a good job of staying around for a majority of the candy’s lifespan in the mouth, only towards the end does pure sweetness show through.
Lemon Meringue: this is the whitish opaque one I discovered by process of elimination. It’s very much all lemon, with no bitterness to it at all, just fresh, sweet, zesty and very juicy. Lovely.
I really enjoyed these. My only beef with them is that the flavors assortments aren’t completely to my liking. There’s at least 1/3 of the package that I’m not interested in eating. That being said, if they were all magically sold together in one big mix, I’d be all over it.
Rating: Will Eat Again
Links Gimbals Website
Since I went out and found the regular Lifesaver Gummi Sours, naturally I came across the Wild Berry Sours Mix. I already went and explained them yesterday, so I won’t repeat myself. Let’s just cut to the tasting, shall we?
This mix was a little hard to pick out the flavors, are they’re either red, purple or white. From the listing on the front, three are the red color, two black and only leaves white grape as the light yellow colored one. I finally, under a bright light, was able to pick out subtle variations on the color enough to guess at the flavors.
Cherry Berry (darkest red): This is just like the cherry Lifesaver. Heavy on the floral and fruity notes with a thick, syrupy taste.
Red Raspberry (red): I think this is the raspberry? The flavor is just red, I get no special fruity, floral, sweet notes at all to make a distinction. It was tasty nevertheless.
Strawberry (light red): Hmm, this does taste berry-like. Has some slight floral notes, but again, just tastes “red”. There were moments where I was sure this was strawberry and moments where I thought I was mistaken and this was the red raspberry. I’ve since given up trying to decide.
Black Raspberry (dark purple): This one had a very deep, but mild berry taste to it. It’s mainly just tart. It was different from the blackberry just by being more fruity and less intense.
Blackberry (mauve): It tastes like blueberry, which to me, is berry flavors with a strong, sweet, floral jasmine note to it. It’s very refreshing and works well with the tartness.
White Grape: My favorite. It really tastes of white grapes which are light, a little tart and have a lime/wine like flavor to it. Really unique and beautifully executed.
I liked these better than the regular Sours mix, but they still leave something to be desired in my mind and palate. If I want sour gummis I’ll go for Sour Patch and if I want Lifesavers I’ll go for the hard candy roll.
Rating: Might Eat Again
Lifesavers Website (Candystand)
I remember when the Lifesaver gummis were first introduced into the candy world sometime when I was still in school (around the early 1990s in case you’re interested). The had a very sassy ad campaign with the new Lifesaver gummis dancing in a very colorful nightclub. Or should I say Gummisavers? This was also about the same time as Lifesavers Holes were on the market. I kinda wish those survived over the gummis, but I digress….
These are the sour variety of the Lifesavers Gummi line, which is made up of the new set of the “Five Flavors”. This one comes in one of those grab bags, as opposed to the roll you normally see in the checkout counter. I like the design of it, it’s very eye-catching and enticing.
Tangy Cherry (red): Very cherry and reminds me of the Lifesaver right away. It has that bright, syrupy taste and the following sweetness all paired with the sourness of the granular sugar coating.
Tangerine (orange): Immediately reminds me of the orange Lifesaver. Very citrusy with a hint of lemon in it so it’s a little more zesty than the standard orange flavor. The sourness pairs perfectly and it tastes terribly juicy. It even leaves that slight sour numbness in the mouth afterward. Easily Best of the bunch.
Watermelon (green): The most sour and artificial of the bunch. It’s that Jolly Rancher flavor, all the way. What more do I need to say?
Strawberry (pinkish red): A little lighter in color than the cherry and it’s hardly noticeable at first. It’s odd because it tastes more general “berry” to me than strawberry. It’s very fruity with a well balanced sweet/sour.
Black Raspberry (purple): Starts off sweet and gradually turns a little tart, like a real blackberry. I get more “juicy” berry flavors than “floral” ones, but it tastes very authentic with a deep sweet blackberry essence.
I like these, I felt they improved on the flavor of the regular Lifesavers Gummis which always came across as bland to me. I look forward to trying out the other kinds now.
Rating:Might Eat Again
Lifesavers Website (Candystand)
This candy is totally new to me. Until I saw it just before buying it, I hadn’t any idea such a thing existed. That was the novelty, the new candy terrain to be discovered. It also sounded pretty promising, as I’m a fan of its cousin the NERDS Rope. Surely this would be an interesting twist on that. Or at least that’s my hope.
Each rope is about five inches long and looks like red licorice with a blue green goo on the inside. It smells very sour and well, tart. Like a red licorice injected with some sass. I could see this really appealing to kids.
The texture is awesome. You get the nice chew of red licorice and the smoothness of the inside, which is just slick and not slimy. It reminded me of frosting and it has a little bit of graininess to it like chunks of sugar that missed getting mixed in. The licorice is more rubbery and isn’t sticky.
The flavor starts out nice as a good fruity red licorice-like chew, then the goo comes in with a sour berry like flavor. It all goes wrong from there. An intense flavor of soap comes through and just washes all the candy flavors out. Seriously, this aftertaste of fake, perfumey, waxy soap just kills this whole thing, it’s really nasty. I couldn’t finsih my first log because I felt like I had bitten into the bar that was sitting in my shower.
So nasty ICK.