Monday, July 27, 2009

Chocolate Salt Water Taffy and Dreams

I totally got beach fever last week and took off Friday and drove to the Outer Banks like someone was chasing me. Hey, it's the summer - what can I say? And I'm sooo lucky to live in such a gorgeous state!!

I got to spend a few hours on the beach until a thunderstorm rolled in. When that happened I did the obvious - went shopping. And, of course, for me, shopping means checking out the candy. And what candy represents the beach more than salt water taffy?

Now the store I stopped in was packed and this stuff was flying off the shelves. Yahoo! This taffy is made by another small candy maker based in Virginia Beach, VA. They say this taffy is full of "sea breeze and sunshine." Yeah and glucose, sugar and hydrogenated vegetable oil. But what the hell.

I also got some salt water taffy at Candy Expo from Sweet's. Sweet's makes those chocolate covered cinnamon gummy bears I didn't love. But hey, they are in the Salt Water Taffy game:

Apparently the sail boat as candy window is vital in the packaging of salt water taffy.

I am going on an assortment rant. I have done this before and I feel certain I will do this again. In the store there were bins of the different flavors. Two of the flavors were peanut butter and cherry chocolate (yum!). Did I get any of those in my assortment? Oh no. I got 12 orange, 12 vanilla, 13 of a flavor I cannot for the life of me identify - some fruit thing, 8 licorice, 6 grape, 6 chocolate, 2 lime, 3 blue raspberry (glaack), 2 banana, 3 peppermint, 1 cinnamon. Next time I'm just going to buy two pieces of taffy - peanut butter and cherry chocolate. The rest of these suck.

Okay, I'm being too hard on them, but I think a Tootsie Roll is 10,000 times better than these chocolate taffy blobs.

Why can't assortments be more assorted? Why do you get 12 orange and no peanut butter? The Sweet's assortment was no better. I got 1 juicy pear and 12 chocolate (although I was okay with that). They also have Neapolitan - good, and peach - horrifying.

And look at these from Forbes:

I thought maybe one was just a poorly colored grape taffy. Oh no - that truly ugly color is licorice. And apparently one flavor is just shoved in after another - I saw many weird combos like the mutant in the upper right. Taffy scares me.

Except for Sweetime's Valentine's Day assortment, which I could eat that until my teeth fell out, I can live without taffy. The Tootsie Roll still reigns in the low-fat-not-chocolate-chew department.

But I didn't go to the Outer Banks for the candy. Every time I go, I have to stop by the Wright Brother's Memorial in Kitty Hawk:

I LOVE this monument. It is absolutely gorgeous, is art deco, and rests on a base in the shape of a star. But best of all is the quote carved on the base of the wing:

"Conceived by genius, achieved by dauntless resolution and unconquerable faith."

What audacity the Wright Brothers had - how brilliant they were. And how they changed the world as we know it. This is sacred ground in my book and it always takes my breath away to stand on it.

What could the rest of us achieve if we had dauntless resolution and unconquerable faith? To what heights could we fly?

This summer - if you go to the beach - eat some taffy and dream some big dreams. That's what summer's for.


Phil said...

I asked about if they had peanut butter in the mix. Turns out the oils in peanut butter come out and mix with the other flavors. Thats not to yummy. But I always buy the individuals and have given it out for years. Definitely the best taffy I've ever had.

Denise Ryan said...

Hi Phil! Thanks for the comment! So does that mean no peanut butter taffy or they just don't make a lot of it?