Sunday, March 29, 2020

Product Review: Chinese candies

I picked up some Chinese candies at an informal seminar when I was a post-doc at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. I can only guess that they were provided by a Chinese post-doc or graduate student. 徐福记 (Hsu Fu Chi) is a Chinese candy company that is mostly owned by Nestlé.[1] The three crisps (all labeled 特制, "specially made") appear to have been produced by Hsu Fu Chi directly. I can only guess that the other two brands, Mr. Shu's and 英之莉 (Ying Zhi Li, "White Jasmine's Petal") are daughter companies.

英之莉: 桔子奶味: This candy is orange-cream flavored (which is what 桔子奶味 means). It pretty much tasted like an orange creamsicle. I liked it, but I would've preferred to have an orange creamsicle.

英之莉: 芒果奶味. This candy is mango-cream flavored (芒果 transliterates as mángguǒ, i.e. "mango"). I actually found the flavor hard to place. Until I translated it [2], I thought it might be orange-cream with an extra spice, like nutmeg or something. This was easily the most interesting of the candies that I tried.

Mr. Shu's: 椰奶味. This candy is coconut-cream flavored (which is what 椰奶味 means). It pretty much tasted like a coconut Life Saver, but not as good. I liked it, but I would've preferred to have a coconut Life Saver.

徐福记: 落花生酥心糖. This candy is a peanut (落花生) crisp (酥心糖). It was like eating a Butterfinger, but without the chocolate and not as flavorful. It was okay, but I would've preferred to have a Butterfinger.

徐福记: 杏仁酥心糖. This candy is an almond (杏仁) crisp (酥心糖). In addition to almonds as an ingredient, they must've also added almond extract because this was intense. It almost tasted like cherries, it was so intense. In fact, it was a little too intense for my taste.

徐福记: 果仁酥心糖. This was easily the least flavorful of the crisps. In fact, I couldn't tell what it was. The candy is labeled as 'nutmeat crisp candy', which isn't very informative. But neither is the Chinese: 果仁 simply means "nut". I didn't care enough to try translating the entire wrapper (which may or may not have the ingredient list).


[1] See Fu Chi.

[2] I find useful for identifying Chinese characters. You simply draw the character with your mouse and pick the correct one from the suggestions on the right.

Image attributions:

Swirly candies is by, available at All rights reserved.

Mr. Shu's candies is by, available at 342023789.jpg. All rights reserved.

Crisps is by applel0ve, available at

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