Monday, July 09, 2007

Guest review: Mark's take on the sweet stuff (or, Today's Fresh Hell)

Lord help me. I knew I never should've told my brother-in-law Mark about this blog. Most people just politely smile and say, "Oh, a candy blog. How nice for you," and then go on their merry way. Perhaps they'll gossip about me to their friends. "Can you believe that wacko? A candy blog? How old is she, twelve?" But rarely do they come back for a second look. (This is, of course, their loss.)

Yes, some friends are regular readers, and for them, I'm truly thankful. Their interest fuels my passion for all things chocolate and candy. And then there's Mark (pictured at right; note the dribble stains on his shirt).

I was sitting around this morning, relishing the quiet while H took his morning nap when the phone rang.

"Hey," said Mark. "Have you ever tried dark chocolate peanut M&Ms?" From the background noise I could only assume that he was standing in line at the convenience store. The answer is no, because I haven't seen them in these parts yet. And I so desperately want them.

He rattled off a few more candy bars, some which I've tried, some I haven't, so he said he'd try them and get back to me with his two cents. Apparently the fact that he and his family are leaving tomorrow for a two-week trip to Europe hasn't sent him into a packing flurry. I wonder why.

I returned home this afternoon to a very sweet e-mail from my niece Kaileigh:

Aunt Patti,
Daddy had me try a candy bar that I really really loved. They were both chocolate so of course I loved them. One was a Reses crispy crunch bar. It tasted like a resse penut butter cup with a great crunch.

Now that's a review, huh?! A girl after my own heart. Brava, Kaileigh! And then there was this: an e-mail from Mark saying that he decided to leave the review of the dark chocolate M&Ms to me, since he hates dark chocolate (such blasphemy!) but his notes on the others he did try:

1) Nestle Butterfinger Crisp
- 3 out of 3 family members loved it.
- Everyone liked how the wafer softened the hard Butterfinger crunch and taste. We are not much of a Butterfinger enthusiast.
- Almost tasted like a peanut butter wafer candy than a butter finger. Sort of had a Kit Kat crunch.
- If you don't like Butterfingers, this might be the candy for you.

2) Reese's Crispy Crunchy
- 3 out of 4 family members hated it.
- Our chocolate lover would eat it just because.
- The other 3 more sophisticated taste buds determined that this chocolate bar was nothing but a terrible marketing scam. If you advertise it as a "Crispy" and "Crunchy" then the consumer would expect a crunch. Very Very disappointing!! It was like a Peanut Butter cup with a few crushed peanuts on top. Almost spit it out, but I pushed through it.

Well, I must admit, I'm impressed with his research, especially since he doesn't have a particularly discerning palate. He actually made me want to scarf down a Butterfinger Crisp. But then, at the bottom of the e-mail, was this postscript:

PS - Michelle was wondering if we do these family taste tests and can email you the results why would we bring any candy back from Europe??

Well that's a fine how-do-you-do! Why would you bring back candy? Um, how about these reasons to start:

1) I'm your favorite sister-in-law

2) I love chocolate

3) You're going to Germany and Belgium, two of the world's best chocolate countries

4) If you don't bring me back chocolate, I won't join you for Thanksgiving thereby leaving you to fend for yourself while your wife and mother-in-law join forces and cause you to curl in the fetal position and watch endless episodes of Hannah Montana.

But it's your choice, Mark.

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