Yesterday I was checking out of the natural foods store where I shop regularly, I spotted this on a nearby shelf, and desperate for a snack, I grabbed them. Very good soft licorice, thick rope twists cut to about 3/4 in. long. A lot like Kookaburra, the Australian licorice, but I liked the taste better actually. Natural Vines licorice is produced by American Licorice Company based in Bend, Oregeon.
On his most recent trip to Italy, my best friend bought me a box of violet-flavored “Senatori” licorice from Amarelli. He picked some up last year on a visit to the Eataly store in NYC and I loved them so much that when he saw them again (at an Eataly actually in Italy) he got me some, along with a box of Sassolini, another Amarelli licorice. I have to say, the mix of violet and licorice and the perfect chewiness of these is great. If you don’t like violet/rose/flower tastes, then avoid, but otherwise…
I’ve wanted to try these “stone” licorice candies for a long time and finally my friend brought me a box over from Italy. They’re called Sassolini (“Pebbles”) and are made by Amarelli, the kings of Italian liquorice. They’re really delicious — sugar-coated with chewy licorice inside, similar to German “Kreide” (chalk stick) candy — and what’s more, they really do look exactly like polished rocks.
If you’re looking for a good, American licorice hard candy, not too sweet, not bitter, Claeys* is hard to beat. Comes in 6 oz. bags and generally sold at places that sell old-fashioned candy — for example Old Sturbridge Village in Massachusetts or say a farmer’s market in Ohio. (Can’t remember which of those was the source of these.)
From the back:
Claeys Candies was established in 1919 with a commitment to quality that continues today. Through three generations of candy makers, Claeys has gained a reputation for producing smooth textured, deliciously flavorful old-fashioned hard candies. When you purchase any Claeys product, you’ll taste the difference experience makes.
Based in South Bend, Indiana, Claeys also makes horehound candies (one of my favorites).
* OMG, this web site is trapped in 1996!
thecatsparticulars asked: Great blog! I love licorice :)
Glad to hear it. Nobody likes it. But I do! :)
Assortment of licorice taffy I bought at a supermarket in northern Ohio. The “Black Taffy” is licorice, although only some of them are black-gray, while most are various colors but with a black center and licorice taste. I prefer the Goetze’s licorice caramels. Yum!
Licorice scented (and colored) candles by Woodcrafts & Candles, handmade in Coventry, Rhode Island. I found them on Etsy and had to have! And yes, they do smell like you-know-what, although the smell takes a while to permeate a room. It’s not overpowering but pleasant. Price, BTW, only $7.50 for six votives, and then a bit for shipping.
Regaliz Anis candies from Spain. I was so pleased when a coworker picked this up for me at the World Plus Market here in Atlanta. Considering they are the really tiny pellet sized licorice, I was surprised to find they weren’t too bitter. They are fairly sweet and while firm, still a bit chewy. More info on the Saet Sweets web site.
Black licorice kitties. I don’t know much about them except a neighbor bought them for me at the Candyland in St. Paul / Minneapolis. She thought to herself: “Licorice…. Cats… WENDY!” Oh, wait, I also know they are yummy and I ate these last five (out of a whole bag) right after I took the picture.
I love Leone candies (see this earlier post) but this is my favorite flavor. Only found it once before so was thrilled to find it at Toscano & Sons Italian Market here in Atlanta. And while it’s not licorice, absinth seems like something licorice lovers automatically would love. I know I do! (Taken with Instagram)
Liquorice Altoids are indeed wonderfully strong. The note inside the package is great too - when you open it says “NOT FOR THE FAINT OF TONGUE” and when you reach the bottom it says “TIME TO BUY MORE ALTOIDS. AND SOME PSYCHOTHERAPY FOR YOUR TONGUE.” I think a lot of the licorice I enjoy could use that warning!
…I’m celebrating National Licorice Day with a glass of liquirizia liqueur. What did you do / eat /drink?
Close-up of Salty Spacemen Stars & Spaceships, a Dutch salted licorice produced by Van Slooten.
When a friendly coworker brought these to me as a gift, I couldn’t believe it. Salty Spacemen Stars & Spaceships!? Yet in fact these very tasty salted licorice were as good as promised and yes, shaped like things from space: rocket ships, moons, stars, space capsules, and weird-looking aliens. The taste is traditional Dutch licorice. Produced by Van Slooten, maker of similar products like Flowers & Butterflies.
P.S. Close-ups of some of the shapes coming up.