Ultimate Candy Guide
Apothecary jars and retro candy cases in this Cobble Hill store are filled with all kinds of sweets—classics like Pop Rocks and Bit-O-Honey, small-batch chocolates from Mast Brothers and Fine & Raw and loads of colorful suckers. sugarshopbrooklyn.com.
Amy's Candy Bar
Owner Amy Hansen, a graduate of Chicago’s French Pastry School, sells more than 200 different candies, along with her own handmade confections—like soft caramels and pistachio-almond nougat—at this Lincoln Square shop. amyscandybar.com.
Aspen Candy Company
This rainbow-colored shop opened by three friends near Wagner Park offers an enormous range of sweets by the pound: gummies, sours, jawbreakers, chocolates, fudge, nuts, malt balls and more. aspencandycompany.com.
Best of Luck Candy
Baltimore native Lucky Thompson moved back home to open a shop stocked with nostalgic candies like Whirly Pops and vanilla Charleston Chews, plus locally made favorites like Jeppi candy-and-nut mixes. thebestofluck.com.
Candies from around the world—chile-ginger gummies from Germany, soft strawberry licorice from Finland—are the specialty at this new online shop. The site recently launched a Tasting Bar section that focuses on flights of candy, like a tasting of eight cocktail-inspired sweets or 20 different gummies. sugarfina.com.
My Sweet Brigadeiro
The Grown Up Chocolate Co.
These bars have names like Glorious Coconut Hocus Pocus but sophisticated ingredients like ganache and gianduja. $25 for 6; chelseamarketbasket.com.
H.S. Chocolate Co.
Peanut lovers hail this NYC-based operation, which makes Peanut Butter Trance bars (left) with dark chocolate, salty caramel, peanut nougat and roasted nuts, as well as cookie-like sweets including the Peanut Butter Pretzel, in which dark chocolate covers a cluster of creamy peanut butter and crispy pretzels. $4; hschocolateco.com.
This new San Francisco bean-to-bar producer makes artisanal single-origin bars wrapped in beautiful paper. $8 each; dandelionchocolate.com.
Made in Colorado, these rich, chewy, all-natural chocolate-nut butter bars have no hydrogenated oils or corn syrup. $2; justinsnutbutter.elsstore.com.
French Broad Chocolates
The creamy flavor in these malted-milk chocolate bars comes from local malted barley grown on a North Carolina farm. $7; frenchbroadchocolates.com.
The understated wrapping gives little hint of what’s inside: rich chocolate bars in varieties like caramel with honeycomb. $5.50 each; suzanneschocolaterie.com.
At this Portland, Oregon, shop, candy is made with cacao from small roasters in flavors like sea salt and cacao nib. $4 each; atthemeadow.com.
These crunchy, waffle-cone-like cookies are coated in hazelnut cream and covered in dark chocolate. $11.50 for 2.8 oz; maxbrenner.com.
Hudson Valley Chocolates
Stephanie Glaisek’s bonbon boxes include pieces with fillings like almond butter, candied tangerine or peppermint tea. $14 for 12; hudsonvalleychocolates.com.
Massachusetts candy makers use unusual ingredients, such as passion fruit and white chocolate, in their caramels. There are also delicious bars like the Ancho, filled with spicy nuts, scotch caramel and pretzels. $12 for 3.4 oz; ehchocolatier.com.
These caramels from New Hampshire are shaped into 1/4-pound logs—you can slice off as little or as much as you like. From $7; susssweets.com.
Handmade in Chicago, Veruca’s sea salt and burnt-caramel candies are covered in dark chocolate. $8 for 4; verucachocolates.com.
Torie & Howard
Created by design-world veterans Torie Burke and Howard Slatkin, these hard candies come in flavors like nectarine-pomegranate and taste like a blast of fresh fruit juice. $5 for 2 oz; torieandhoward.com.
Brooklyn Hard Candy
Graduates of London’s Le Cordon Bleu make these fruity small-batch candies—varieties include Concord grape, golden pineapple and wild strawberry—and package them in pretty glass jars with cork tops. $8 for 2.5 oz; brooklynhardcandy.com.
Softer and airier than traditional saltwater taffy, this creamy candy is made with natural vanilla bean and enough sea salt to lend the candies a substantial crunch. $5.50 for 2.5 oz; thesaltyroad.com.
Xocolatti’s globally-inspired truffles and slates (very thin versions of chocolate bark with layers that recall slate rock) come in seven exotic flavors like mango and paprika with white chocolate. "In India, we usually eat fruit with spices on it, and one of the most popular combinations is mangos with paprika on top," says founder Shaineal Shah.
Ugly Truffles at Cake Chicago
Made by hand, these lumpy truffles may not be pretty but they are expertly crafted, with creamy centers and thin shells of tempered chocolate. Flavor names are conversation-starters, like Put Your Clothes On Chocolate (a naked ugly truffle in pure bittersweet chocolate) and new offerings like Come Hither, Honey, with a soft honey-almond filling rolled in white chocolate and roasted nuts. cake-chicago.com
The 167-year-old Swiss chocolate maker’s Excellence line includes bars like silky dark chocolate flecked with crunchy caramel pieces and Fleur de Sel. $2.59 for 3.5 oz.; lindtusa.com
The company known for its luscious hot chocolate sticks—blocks of chocolate meant to be swirled into warm milk—recently introduced a line of bars in kooky and festive flavors like waffle pecan, and milk chocolate blended with bits of roasted chestnut. theticketkitchen.com
Former Peace Corps volunteers launched this single-origin bean-to-bar operation, producing chocolates in Madagascar where the ingredients are cultivated. The arabica coffee bar uses beans from a small, local co-op, plus crunchy cocoa nibs. madecasse.com
Valrhona has taken their Caramélia chocolate bar, which uses rich dairy-based caramel (made from skim milk and butter) instead of caramelized sugar, and added crunchy pearls of toasted puffed cereal coated in the same chocolate for an incredibly creamy, crunchy candy bar. valrhona-chocolate.com
Godiva Cake Truffles
The chocolatier's new cake truffles, created with celebrity baker Duff Goldman, come in four Ace of Cakes–inspired flavors, including Cookie Dough (cookie dough-flavored ganache with a milk chocolate shell topped with dark chocolate chips) and Goldman's favorite: Butterscotch Walnut Brownie, a ball of caramel and maple walnut cream, surrounded by milk chocolate and molasses. godiva.com
John & Kira's
Inspired by a holiday fruit basket, John & Kira’s chocolate Enchanted Garden Trio, has cherry, apple and orange candies. The chocolates are all meticulously colored by hand and filled with rich, fruity ganache. johnandkiras.com
Askinosie, a fantastic bean-to-bar producer in Missouri, collaborated with other artisans for their new CollaBARation line of chocolate bars. We loved the sweet, malty chocolate they created with Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams and the unexpected dark chocolate licorice bar, made with a Scandinavian licorice producer. askinosie.com
Fat Toad Farm
The family that runs this Vermont dairy farm turns out luscious Mexican cajeta-style goat milk caramel, packaged with an expert eye for design. The newest mix-in flavor is salted bourbon. fattoadfarm.com
Spoonable’s caramel sauces have deep flavor and great texture. We especially love the salty Just Caramel and the rich Brooklyn Butterscotch. spoonablellc.com
Mouth Party Caramels
Mouth Party’s caramels have a familiar old-fashioned feel and slightly firm, chewy texture. They come in lots of flavors including seasonal pumpkin and apple-cinnamon. Ten percent of the profits go to cancer research. mouthpartycaramel.com
The Liddabit Sweets Candy Cookbook
Liz Gutman and Jen King, the classically trained pastry chefs from Brooklyn’s Liddabit Sweets, have published their first cookbook, with recipes for signature items like beer-and-pretzel caramels and chai-latte lollipops. $18.
The Sweet Book of Candy-Making
Food writer Elizabeth LaBau’s new book simplifies candy-making, with helpful troubleshooting tips and easy-to-follow photo tutorials. $25.