Monday, March 08, 2010

Wonka Fruit Marvels and Fruit Jellies: a professional review from unprofessional testers

This weekend I had a reunion with all my taste tester buddies. They're a wild bunch. I suppose I could blame our trained palates as a reason that we all like to get sauced enjoy fine foods and beverages, as well as each others' company. As luck would have it, I received a box of samples from Wonka earlier in the day, so I thought, hey, why not have the Buds (as we were called) do the taste testing? I put out a notepad for comments since I knew I'd be lucky if I even remembered being there.
I put out three products: Wonka Exceptionals Fruit Marvels in Clementine Orange and Pomegranate flavors, and Wonka Exceptionals Fruit Jellies in Grapefruit.
Here's what the notes say:

  • Pomegranate-- yummy!
  • Surprise! The Marvel is soft inside.
  • Orange: has a soft center. Pleasant surprise! Great!
  • Reminiscent of early winter citrus with a hint of cooked orange, candy orange and fresh orange. (Okay, I made that last one up. But it certainly would've come up had the wine not started flowing.)
Here is Taste Tester Ginger with a Pomegranate Marvel in her hand. She took it out of her mouth because she suddenly remembered she gave up candy for Lent. Taste Tester Dawnie told her she could finish it if she said ten Novenas.

So here's the deal: the Marvels are "Hard candies with soft centers, delicately sugar dusted." I have to say, these are a unique candy. I can't think of anything to compare them to, except they're kind of like those little strawberry candies that are hard on the outside and soft on the inside. They're very tasty.
The Fruit Jellies are "Fantastically flavorful soft jellies dusted with sugar." In other words, top-shelf gumdrops in a cube shape.
I really like these products and here's why.
1) I like the packaging. This is how I always envisioned Wonka candies should look like, rather than the goofy Oompas packaging with the cartoon Willy Wonka. These definitely feel like something you could actually get at the Willy Wonka Factory Store, if he had one.
2) The flavors. They could've done plain old orange, but instead they did Clementine. I was thrilled to see they had grapefruit jellies, an under-utilized candy flavor. And of course, there's the sophistication factor of pomegranate and Goji berry. With flavors like these, Wonka/Nestle is obviously trying to appeal to candy lovers of a certain age.
3) They're made with natural ingredients. Yes, there's sugar and corn syrup and modified corn starch in these, so the whole "natural" label is kind of shifty. This ain't health food, folks. But the good news is, there's no artificial colors, which can be a big deal to some parents. The candies are colored with carmine and cochineal. It's probably best not to tell the kiddies that these colors come from ground-up beetles. (So if you're vegan, take note of that. No jellies or Marvels for you.)


Anonymous said...

Ginger could be your Candy Yum Yum model!!

Candy Yum Yum said...

Great idea! Only she's unavailable until Easter.

Gravity said...

I just bought a pretty little tin of the Clementine Fruit Marvels last night - I love them! I hope that we get more of the flavors and the jellies here, this was the first I had seen of them.

Samantha(eliza) said...

I got the Pomegranate today, it's one of the few pom flavors I've tasted that has the awesome tart flavor you get from some of the seeds when eating it directly from the fruit. @Gravity Check Walmart, they had all of the flavors at our super walmart in the snack isle.

Anonymous said...

I am looking at a package of the red apple fruit jellies right now, and it says "fruit & vegetable juice coloring", with no mention of the cochineal dye. Am I missing something?

Candy Yum Yum said...

The Goji variety has the cochineal. I should've specified that.

Anonymous said...

I just bought some of the Grapefruit Jellies at our dollar store. I think they retail for around $5.99. They are delicious!