Sunday, July 19, 2015

Day 200 - Sour Gummies Ts and Js

I sort of got talked into buying this candy when I was lamenting to a Trader Joe’s employee that I needed to stock up on non-perishable, hopefully non-crushable products to bring for a month long TJ shopping hiatus.  He hooked me up with some great stuff (for example, the Chocolate Covered Almonds I reviewed yesterday!), but then he suggested these.  I wasn’t thrilled – I mean, I am an ADULT.  Do any adults like sour candies???  I mean, candies whose sole function is to be SOUR??  But the bag of shapes did fit the criteria of being easy to travel with, so I threw it in my cart.
Here's the bag - Sour Gummies Ts and Js (get it - Trader Joe's...)
Then, once we got to our destination, it sat unopened for the whole month, because I wasn’t eager to try them.  So now that our time here is almost finished and we are on “eat everything out of the fridge and out of the cupboard before we go” mode, I figured “it’s now or never”. 

But I came up with a brilliant idea.  Instead of reviewing with my own bias, I should have a KID review them.  But we do not have kids.  And that is where the neighbor boy Sean came into the picture!

So tonight Sean, David, and I sat at the end of the driveway at dusk and did a blind taste test.  We thought of it like a science experiment.  It was fun!  Here are the backgrounds of the reviewers:

Sean – age 12 (though first he told us he was 11, he forgot he had a birthday two weeks ago).  Resident of Ormond Beach, FL.  Likes sour candies.  Thinks Bertie Botts Beans are sorta cool, there are SOME good flavors but mostly gross ones.  Worst candy ever tried:  Warheads.  Likes rootbeer barrels and Lik-A-Stick.

David – age 62.  Mostly resident of Arlington, VA, sometimes resident of Ormond Beach, FL.  Didn’t expect to like these candies.  Likes rootbeer barrels, frozen Charleston Chew candy bars, anything chocolate, and has never tasted Lik-A-Stick.

Me – age 49.  Same residences as David.  Did NOT expect to like these.  In fact, totally does not get the trend of sour just to be sour candies.  Missed that boat.  Likes Twix, Snickers, and Rollos.  Ate Lik-A-Sticks as a kid and liked them but never once ate the actual candy stick.

Here are the Ts and Js displayed on a tiny plate, ready to be reviewed!
The test – I put candies out on a little plate that David and Sean could not see.  I then had them close their eyes and put one in their hands.  They ate them with eyes closed.  Here is how it went:

Pink candy:
Sean:  CHERRY!!  I like it!
David:  I like it a lot.  It is probably cherry, but has a bit of lemon.  It is like a gum drop.
Susan:  These really stick in your teeth.

Orange candy:
Sean:  DANG, orange is SOUR!!  Like a lemon.  (He added this later, after David mentioned watermelon – “Yeah, the first bit is watermelon, after that, lemon.”)
David:  Lemon, with a hint of watermelon at the beginning.
Susan: SOUR!!
Sean with his orange candy, not peeking, ready to taste
 White candy:
Sean:  Tangerine?
David:  Tangerine?  (I laughed here, telling him he was just copying whatever Sean guessed.)  Maybe orange?
Susan:  Not as sour.

Second White candy – this one I let them SEE before they ate it.  I was confused because, to me, the bag only has 3 COLORS but 4 FLAVORS… 
Sean:  I think the white Js and Ts are different flavors…  The white Ts are grapefruit.  The white Js are lemon.
David:  …
Susan:  …  (Sean was adamant about the letters being different flavors, I am not so sure.)

Tester David with his eyes closed
Once I showed them the flavor choices, we all agreed that the PINK ones are grapefruit.  If you eat a pink one and taste your spit as you chew, the spit is really grapefruity.  Know what I mean??  And we agreed that the orange ones are tangerine.  However, Sean felt he could see a color difference in the white ones – he swore some were “green”.  David and I could not see that for the life of us.  Perhaps you need youthful eyes…

Sean came up with a great experiment – try them with your eyes closed and your NOSE PLUGGED!  When I gave him one using those techniques he could not guess the flavor correctly.  David could not even fathom a guess under those conditions, he said it didn’t taste of a flavor but just tasted sweet, sour, and chewy.

Tester in the double blind - no eyes and no nose test
Let's try if we can't see AND can't smell!

Sean and Susan’s favorite flavor was grapefruit (Sean said “I love it!”).  David’s favorite flavor was tangerine.  Sean laid out a scale of sourness for anyone who is interested:
Most sour – lemon
2nd most sour – lime
3rd most sour – grapefruit
Least sour – tangerine

Sean gave each flavor a 1 – 5 rating, and then did the math to get an average overall rating of 3.25.  David was surprised he liked these candies since he didn’t expect to and gave them an overall rating of 4.5.  I thought they were not great, my favorite part was the cute T and J shapes.  I gave them an overall rating of 2.5. 

P.S. – we gave Sean the rest of the bag to take home.  He was happy.

Price – $1.99

Rating (average of 3 reviewers) – 3.5

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