Thursday, March 25, 2010
Glico Almond Chew
The picture of the Glico man printed on the back of my small box of almond chews is very tiny. The normal details of an illustration of a man running with arms raised as he crosses the finish line now appear to be a naked man censored with three white blobs with the characters for gu-ri-ko written on them. It's nice to see that even the most innocent and wholesome of corporate mascots can be perverted if the mind viewing it is dirty enough.
Here's a bit of trivia for you about Glico. Though it is well-known abroad for making Pocky, it's first product was a caramel made from glycogen. The company's name comes from that ingredient. Ironically, caramels are nowhere to be seen on their web site's main attractions.
I'd been seeing this box of almond chews in Okashi no Machioka for a very long time. It's one of the things which is always on offer in the section with kid's candy and old-fashioned candy. The standard size box is 18 chews and similar to the plethora of caramel and chewy candies you find in Japan, but I didn't want to get such a big box considering it takes me about a month to consume all of it and once the plastic outer wrapping is removed, the chews (or caramels) get moist and icky before I can finish them. Recently, a smaller box was for sale for 49 yen (54 cents) so I snapped it up and took the plunge.
There are 10 chews in the small box that I bought. Each is individually wrapped in wax paper and they're 19 calories per chew. The size is about 2 cm x 1.6 cm x 1 cm (.8 in. x .6 in. x .4 in.), so they're not very big. You can see cross sections of almonds in every chew, though the density of nuts is not all that high.
The candy smells like nut candy. It's like a much fainter versions of what you smell when you open a box of nut brittle. The flavor is an interesting balance between sweetness, nuttiness, and subtle caramel flavor. It's not overly buttery, nor heavily sweetened. The nut flavor does not come through exceptionally strongly either, but it all comes together to create a unique flavor mixture and texture that doesn't overstate any of the components.
I didn't think much of these when I ate the first one, but then I wanted another, and another. I quickly found myself wanting not to stop so clearly these are rather addicting. One caveat I offer is the fact that these are much harder to eat when quite cold. It's important to get them at least to room temperature