I am always amazed on how many different varieties of licorice that exist out there. Living in the United States, you really don’t see that many, as it’s not a popular candy here, for reasons I don’t quite understand. Walk into any store that imports candy from Europe and you start to get an idea of how extremely popular and diverse a candy it really is. These Tappsy licorice candies are not only different from other varieties I’ve had before, they’re also more creative. I’ve seen licorice in animal shapes before, fish and cats come right to mind. But panda faces? Really? This is certainly new territory.
So what are these Panda faces made of? Well, aside from the accents of black licorice to define the features, the white part is a soft, gummi “foam”. It’s chewy, yet not very dense. It reminds me of the “cream” part in many gummies you find here in the USA, like the white part of those blue gummi sharks you see everywhere.
The flavor is really nice, and not as delicate as I imagined. Depending on the piece you got, as there were pieces that had the base of black licorice accented with the white foam, and others visa versa. The white foam is lightly sweet and is a little marshmallow-y in flavor, a light vanilla flavor accented by a starchiness. The licorice is lovely with delicate herbal notes and a wonderful rich molasses base to it. They two parts blend beautifully and I found myself very tempted to keep eating these one after another.
I definitely recommend these if you love black licorice and you are looking for something new. I was wonderfully surprised with these! Yay, pandas are yummy!
Rating: Will Eat Again
Links Katjes Website
I was totally excited to hear Panda was coming out with a nice Cherry Licorice flavor. I love Panda’s licorice flavors, and aside from the standard black licorice, their discontinued Strawberry is sorely missed within my candy repertoire. So here’s a new red licorice that could possibly take the place of the strawberry? Sign me up.
I love the packaging design. The licorice comes in a resealable 6 oz bag, which as the iconic Panda illustration on it, along with a clear image of the licorice and red cherries. It’s really a pleasing design.
The first thing that told me right away that this cherry licorice is different from all the other kinda I’ve had before is the ingredients list: Molasses, Wheat Flour, Cherry Puree, Citric Acid, Natural Flavor, Black Carrot Juice Concentrate, Licorice Extract. See that? Cherry puree! None of those wonky medicinal tasting artificial flavors. This is the real stuff.
The pieces are a deep maroon color with a sticky texture to them. I feel a film on my hands when I handle them, but part of that could be the humidity. They’re about an inch long and have that star cross section pattern to them. The pieces smell starchy with a hint of black cherry.
The texture is surprisingly thick and chewy. They dissolve after maybe 20 chews, which is a lot longer than what I was expecting. The flavor is wonderful, way more intense than I expected. It has that iconic black cherry flavor to it, not that fake “red” flavor you get with most licorice. It’s oddly moist and the chew isn’t sticky at all. Really lovely.
If you’re into red licorice, you must try this stuff. It’s awesome. My boyfriend loves it and has since polished off the bag. Try some of this and never look back at Twizzlers, I’m serious.
Rating: Will Buy Again
These Switzer’s Chewy Licorice Bites with my other find along with the Switzer’s Cherry Twists that I reviewed earlier this week. I admit that I had higher hopes for these, as I’m must more of a black licorice person than a red one. So I was excited and curious to see how I’d like them. Would they prove me wrong that these American licorice chews were not all flavorless and unremarkable? Only one way to find out…
The bites are really little nubbins of licorice. They’re nicely black and have a pretty sheen to them. They do have some holes in them, but you can tell that some sealed off when the bits were cut in the production line. They pattern reminds me of lotus root.
The flavor is a little bitter at first, then grows into a lovely anise/licorice flavor. It’s very herbal and lightly sweet, and the chew is very plasticity. It falls apart easily into chunks as I chew and gradually softens before dissolving away.
Overall, I’m sad to say I’m not very impressed. The flavor a nice, yet still too mild for my tastes. The texture was also not as chewy as I hoped, and the strange slickness of it felt like it was robbing me of some of the flavor. So the style of these aren’t my thing, but like the Cherry Twists from last week, if you’re a fan of this style of candy, you might have a new favorite of these!
Rating: Not Worth It
Links Switzer’s Website
These, like the Lakritz Batzen I reviewed on Monday, are another licorice made by Katjes. I picked these up on the same trip to Cost Plus World Market, when I raided their candy aisle for all the sweets I can’t find around where I live. Eager to try as much Katjes licorice as I could get my hands on, I nabbed these, but little did I know how much I’d love them. I should have bought more.
The name of these translates to “Kitten Paws” as the licorice pieces are small and round like cat feet. Again, terribly cute, and I can’t help but feel that “cute” is a great match for licorice. Really? Ever realize how much licorice is named after cute things? Kittens? Pandas? Bears? Scottie Dogs? Chalk? Buttons? I digress….
The texture of these are much firmer than the Lakritz Batzen. Those were much softer and squishier, almost jelly-like. These are more dense and chewy, like a fruit snack. Thankfully, they aren’t sticky in the mouth at all, so they don’t annoy me and I can really enjoy the texture. The flavor is fantastic too, as it’s very sweet with nice molasses notes and a strong licorice flavor. It’s not as herbal as the Lakritz Batzen, much more on the sweet side than those, but they’re still lovely and really represent what an “ideally good licorice” tastes like.
I am buying a stash of these next time I see them on the shelves. They’re just too god to pass up. I find they’re also really good car candy, and they don’t melt easily, and they have good staying power in the mouth, especially if you suck on them instead of chewing them. If you’re a black licorice lover, you gotta try these.
Links Katjes Website
Katjes are quickly becoming one of my favorite licorice candy companies. There hasn’t been a single variety of theirs that I’ve tried to date that I didn’t enjoy. It’s sad that the main place I find a good stocking of their candies is Cost Plus World Market, and sadly there’s none of them in my neck of the woods. Saddness. So I always do my best to stop into one when I know I’m going to be close by.
Katjes means “little kitten” in Dutch, and I have to say that’s pretty cute! Katjes, according to their website, says they’ve never used artificial colors in their licorice in 20 years. Pretty sweet! They also have an addictive “licorice chooser” on their site which allows you to pair flavor and texture to find the idea licorice for you. I’m smitten!
So my last trip to a Cost Plus World Market I found this bag of Lakritz Batzen. I have no clue what the title says, but I saw licorice and had to nab it to try it.
This licorice is sweet and soft. The pieces are like gumdrops that are round on the sides but flat on the top and bottom, like a fat button. They’re covered in a granulated sugar and are a nice black color. They smell woodsy and herbal, like good licorice should. The texture is indeed soft, the pieces are squishy when you chew them and dissolve easily. I prefer to suck on them for a bit before I chew, as the flavor lasts longer that way. The flavor is very nice as it has a sweetness to it with lots of molasses flavors mixed with a licorice taste. It’s not too herbal or medicinal tasting. It’s just…right. A nice licorice for beginners and for those who love it in any form.
I’m so smitten with these, and my boyfriend loved them even more than I did. The bag disappeared so fast which left both of us wishing for another.
Links Katjes Website
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