Overwhelming happiness is often described as “feeling like a kid in a candy store.” If your childhood has passed, you can still live out this age-old idiom by traveling back in time the sweetest way. Step into one of America’s best old-school candy shops, where you’ll find chocolates, gummies, suckers, and other sugary snacks manufactured long ago.
You, your parents, your grandparents and maybe even your great-grandparents might remember confections like Whirly Pop, Pixy Stix, Charleston Chew, and candy cigarettes. Modern day treats are up to par, but there’s something about Dubble Bubble and Gummy Sharks that makes you feel youthful and fearless, and these shops stock the classics.
To figure out which candy stores we’d most want to be a kid in, we took a look at the highest-rated and most talked about candy stores on review sites including Yelp, and we also spoke to both food journalists and everyday folks with a sweet tooth for treats in small-town shops.
Furthermore, each selection had to sell chocolates and/or candies that have been around for multiple generations, or homemade goodies using or mimicking old-school recipes for bites like saltwater taffy or butterscotch-covered cashews. Take a trip back in time with us as we visit America’s 22 best old-school candy shops.