It's Christmas Eve!! Tonight, Santa leaves the North Pole and ventures out into the world to deliver toys to all the good little boys and girls. It's one of the greatest nights of the year, for so many reasons, and I've saved one of my favorite new products to review on such an amazing day!
Holiday Dum Dums Lollipops are new for 2013 and I'm so happy I found them. I first discovered their existence on Instagram and the poster claimed they found them at Dollar Tree. We looked, but had no luck. So, I searched some more, using hashtags to my advantage, and saw that they were also available at Walgreens. After one trip up, these babies were in my hands and on their way home.
Now, I found these about 3 weeks ago, but held off on opening them. Because I've purchased and tried so many things that weren't new to the world, but only new to me, I wanted to make this one stand out. I honestly planned on reviewing them earlier, but real life kicked my ass and I wanted to wait for it to settle down, so I could really appreciate the novelty, before sitting here to write a half-assed story. What better day to enjoy the little things in life than Christmas Eve?
The flavors listed on the bag are what lured me in. As soon as I saw "Gingerbread" and "Sugar Cookie," I knew this had to be mine. Unlike the Gingerbread Oreos, these would have been something I actually bought on Ebay. Without even trying one pop, I know it would have been a rip-off and waste of money, but it would have been worth it, if that makes sense. Thankfully, I found them for retail value and can now see if these awesome little graphics translate just as well in taste. As I write this, I still haven't tried one. This time, I'm giving a live, play-by-play, taste test. Only the photos have been taken, so far..
Besides not buying a lot of Dum Dums, I really am a big fan. They're usually something I find in a variety bag, Doctor's office, or family member's house. To this day, I don't think I've purchased more than 1 or 2 bags in my lifetime, and that includes this one. In fact, I think the majority of them came from Trick-or-Treat bags as a kid. But between the cool flavors and even cooler wrappers, these are always a hit. Of course, we're also offered a Mystery Flavor. Whether your a child or 26-year-old manchild, it's. about. to. go. down.
I'm kicking things off from left to right on the bag, so Merry Cherry is up first. The flavor name reminds me of something I would have put on the Horror Hi-C boxes. It's a perfect way of giving a traditional, almost boring, flavor a holiday name and making it feel welcome and included. I know the deal, Dum Dums. Now let's see how this tastes.
Like I said, I'm giving you a live taste test. If I had more time, this would have been the perfect opportunity to upload my first video review or "vlog," but that would have cut into my wrapping. So you'll just have to trust that I really popped this pop into my mouth for the very first time. So far, I can tell you that this is your typical cherry flavor that borders on the line between cough syrup and Luden's Cherry cough drops. This is common with cherry flavored candy and, really, it depends on your preference. I'm not a big fan of Merry Cherry. It reminds me of being a kid, pretending to be sick for a day off, and having to force down medication for my faux illness. Sometimes there's a price to pay for 8 hours off. In this case, it's Merry Cherry.
Okay, Sugar Plum is pretty good. It's not too sweet or sugary and really reminds me of grape. I'm sure that's all it really is, with a fancy holiday name, but there is a subtle difference between traditional grape pops and whatever Sugar Plum is. It almost tastes like wine and, believe me, that aint a bad thing. Now if only I could get a Sugar Plum buzz going. Then we'd have a winner.
As soon as I opened the wrapper to take this picture, I was smacked with an overwhelming scent of chocolate. That's not something I'm complaining about, though. That's the hype and pressure that this Pop placed on itself as I go in for the taste-test. Without even trying it, this is already in the lead thanks to its aroma and icon graphic on the wrapper. I love stuff like that.
Okay.. I love the way this tastes. For some reason, it reminds me of when I was a kid. Remember those markers that smelled like real things whenever you used them. Magic Scented Markers, I believe? Well, if memory serves, there was a chocolate one and this Dum Dum Pop tastes exactly the way that marker smelled. Get it? It's like a hard Tootsie Roll and, it may be my imagination, but I think I can actually taste some marshmallow thrown into the mix. This one is really good and perfect for the Holidaze... and holidays.
This was one of the major selling points that attracted me to these Dum Dums, but I didn't really go in with any expectations, the least of them high. Trying to replicate the Sugar Cookie flavor seems to be fairly difficult and you can use Pebble Sugar Cookie Cereal as a reference. In this case, it's another failed attempt. So far, this Dum Dum reminds me of Butterscotch candy, cupcakes, and, to a lesser degree, Candy Corn. It has a waxy look and feel to it and strays far from a Sugar Cookie. But, with that said, it isn't necessarily bad! It's actually really good, it just doesn't seem to be what it's supposed to be. That's fine, it still tastes delicious.
If you don't like Gingerbread, then you probably won't like this lollipop. This one, surprisingly, tastes a lot like Gingerbread and I'm happy to hear it (or taste it) because it was my number one attraction. Now, the longer it stays in my mouth, the more it's starting to taste like maple syrup, but even that is welcome! It's spicy, a bit like a non-alcoholic shot of Jameson, and serves its purpose well. If I was somebody who ate lollipops on a daily basis, then I don't think this would be one I'd have more than one day a year, but luckily I'm not that type of person and don't have to make such dire life decisions ;)
I consider Apple Cider the dark horse in this race for Dum Dum supremacy because it was the third best attraction on the holiday bag. But, because I'm a sucker (hehe) for unique flavors that you don't normally see, I have high hopes for this one. It reminds me of Jelly Belly Jelly Beans. They always come up with things you'd never expect and manage to sell them perfectly.
Now, this is very sweet and very good!! So far, this is my favorite. I've always been a big fan of Green Apple, and that's what this is... minus the green. It's not sour, it's not too tangy, it's just right. It really does taste like cold apple cider. Even the after taste reminds me of that feeling you get after you just had a few sips. Personally, I associate Apple Cider more with October than December, but this is just too good to even care about associations.
GREEN APPLE GRINCH
Another flavor name that would have been on the Hi-C Horror Boxes, but I'll take it and run with Dum Dums. It think it's pretty safe to assume that I've had this before and that the "Grinch" part isn't going to be a "part" at all, but that's okay. Every bag needs fillers. Every team needs a bench.
I say that as if I didn't just tell you I'm a big fan of Green Apple, but that's because this is a holiday bag of pops and there are bigger fish in the sea. Sure, Green Apple may be my Lebron James on lollipops but, in this bag, there are a few Michael Jordans that call for higher recognition. This is good, I've had it 1,004 times, but at least it goes to prove that this is different from the Apple Cider pop. This is more bitter and leaves that feeling in your throat that makes you want to cough. Ah, we are all witnesses.
By the way, if you're not a basketball fan, I understand and accept that a great deal of that paragraph is lost on you. When I read your paragraphs on Star Wars, I'll consider it payback.
What the hell is Polar Punch? My guess is that it's a Fruit Punch flavored lollipop, but I have no clue. I'm even more intrigued by the fact that there was only one Polar Punch pop in the entire bag. Is this the white shark fruit snack of the Dum Dums world? Is this supposed to be a slushy or snow cone flavored pop? So many questions and only one way to answer. Let's try the one and only Polar Punch!
Wow.. I'm really not sure what this is. It's fruity, that's for sure. I'm getting hints of Strawberry and Watermelon. Definitely some Kiwi and it reminds me of the blue pack of Starburst that I used to buy as a kid. Maybe there was something in there that tasted like this. It's frustrating that I can't pinpoint an exact flavor, but it's not Blue Raspberry and that makes me happy. I thought I was being duped into believing this was something different. I guess, if I have to describe this, I'd say it's a Fruit Punch flavored lollipop that isn't traditional and would maybe remind you of the blue Hawaiian Punch. You just have to try it!
Finally, the mystery flavor! This was another one that I was very excited to try, especially because of what I read. Apparently, in previous bags of original Dum Dums pops, the mystery flavor was Peanut Butter and Jelly! Now, that doesn't sound like it would be very appetizing, but that doesn't mean I don't want to try it! If there's a PB&J lollipop out there, then I want to own it. Even if I spit it out, it must be attempted.
However, as soon as I opened this wrapper, I knew it wasn't anything special and, in fact, was just another one of the holiday pops I had already opened.
Merry Freakin' Cherry... Really? Of all the flavors they could have used, and of all the flavors already in that bag, I had to open Merry Cherry?? I tried it just to be sure it wasn't something cooler, but I was right to assume that this was just another cough syrup flavored lollipop. On the bright side, not every Mystery Flavor is Merry Cherry. My girlfriend opened one that turned out to be Gingerbread, so at least you get some type of surprise. I would have rathered something completely different, but the mystery flavor is really just a bonus, anyway. It's good enough for what it is.
So, in the end, my favorites are Hot Chocolate and Apple Cider, but the entire bag is a hit. Overall, you really can't go wrong. I gave Merry Cherry a hard time, but even that isn't horrible. For some of you who really love Cherry, that may be your favorite Holiday Pop! From top to bottom, or left to right, you're going to get something that enhances the season and, really, that's what it's all about. It's products like these that give us holiday novelty to try, talk about, and remember for years to come. Sure, at the end of the day, they're just lollipops, but it's what you do with them and who you share them with that makes memories. Give these to a 5-year-old and see if he doesn't remember, 20 years from now, that time you gave him a Gingerbread lollipop. Things like this add up and mean the world to kids and grown ups alike. That's why I saved it for Christmas Eve. I tried every one of them alone, but I shared them with all of you.
Now, I have a Christmas party to go to in a few hours and currently have a rainbow colored mouth. So I'm going to go brush my teeth and wrap some presents. If I don't post again before the big day, have a Merry Christmas!! If I do, then consider that one an extra :)
PS. I'm too lazy to go back and edit everything I just wrote, so overlook the typos and pretend I'm an excellent author!