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Annie B’s Popcorn and Caramel: Handcrafted Goodness

www.redbirdhills.com

Photo by Red Bird Hills Photography. www.redbirdhills.com

Annie B’s is a company that’s been making gourmet popcorn and handmade caramel for more than three decades. In 2013, the iconic firm was taken over by a young couple, self-described caramel lovers Justin and Amanda Henke. The question: is the company still producing fabulous popcorn and caramel? Well, during the 2014 holiday season, Annie B’s products were featured on Oprah’s Favorite Things list. That tells you something.

RFT Editors sampled the Minnesota-based company’s Sea Salt Caramel Popcorn and Sharp Cheddar Cheese Popcorn. (They also make a Jalapeno Cheddar and Triple Treat, a combo of cheese, white corn, and caramel corn, that we did not sample.)

We sampled two Annie B popcorn flavors: caramel and sharp cheddar.

We sampled two Annie B popcorn flavors: caramel and sharp cheddar.

Sea Salt Caramel Popcorn– Moan…that’s what tasting Annie B’s Sea Salt Caramel Popcorn elicited from our tasting team. This popcorn offers buttery caramel goodness with tangy sea salt that moderates the sweetness of the caramel. It’s undoubtedly some of the best caramel popcorn we’ve ever tasted.

Sharp Cheddar Cheese Popcorn– This is a savory popcorn with a tangy, cheesy flavor. While all of our editors liked this popcorn, one of our finest tasters ended up taking the bowl of cheesy popcorn and finishing it all off herself. Now that’s an endorsement.

Annie B’s also makes up to 20 different types of caramels (depending on the season), all of them in individually wrapped, 4-inch sticks. While this caramel is a bit stiffer than I generally prefer, the buttery flavors are tasty.

Annie B's caramels

Annie B’s offers a wide range of caramel flavors. Photo by Red Bird Hills

Sea Salt– This is buttery, chewy caramel is studded with bits of crunchy, tangy sea salt that makes the taste buds go crazy. The salt creates a contrast to the sweetness of the caramel. Yum!

Apple– While it’s not my favorite flavor, this caramel offers the distinct flavor of green apple.

Cappuccino– This buttery caramel doesn’t have a strong coffee flavor, but it’s rich and creamy.

Caramel– The plain caramel flavor offers plenty of buttery caramel goodness.

Chocolate Sea Salt– This is a dark caramel doesn’t have a strong chocolate essence, but it does have plenty of crunchy sea salt.

Butter Rum– Shiver me timbers, matey, this caramel is lip smacking good with deep rum flavor.

Annie B's caramels are made in small batches the old fashioned way.

Annie B’s caramels are made in small batches the old fashioned way.

Black Raspberry– I left this flavor to the last believing that I wouldn’t like it. I mean, really, black raspberry and caramel? I was wrong. This is my favorite with a fruity blackberry flavor wrapped in notes of caramel. Wow!

www.anniebscandy.com

Looking for more sweet candy reviews? Check out these reviews by realfoodtraveler.com experts :

“Queen Bee Gardens: Honeylicious”

“The Candy Lady, Albuquerque, NM”

“Give Your Lovebug Moonstruck”

“Beanpod, Fernie, BC: Rustic Artisan Chocolate”

“Three Georges Southern Chocolates: Deliciously Southern”

“Portland’s Tiny Chocolatiers”

 



Bobbie Hasselbring, RFT Editor

RFT co-founder Bobbie Hasselbring has been a travel junkie her entire life. An award-winning writer and editor for more than 25 years and author of the regional food-travel bestsellers, The Chocolate Lover’s Guide to the Pacific Northwest and The Chocolate Lover’s Guide Cookbook, Bobbie is editor-in-chief at realfoodtraveler.com.