Happy Hanukkah With Paskesz Kosher Candy and More!

CC_Paskez Kosher TITLE PLATEHanukkah began on Sunday night earlier this week and it is a holiday I’ve been wanting to acknowledge here on CollectingCandy.com for some time.  I’ve finally gathered up enough fun Hanukkah-related candy items to share, so make the jump to check them out!

I’ll kick off my coverage with a delightful pair of chocolate bars I found this month featuring a Hanukkah-themed version of the popular “Elf on the Shelf” called The Mensch on a Bench.  Just saying that out loud makes me smile – these bars are great!

Praim Confections - The Mensch on a Bench - Gelt-y Pleasure - dark chocolate - 3.5 oz candy bar wrapper - November 2015

Praim Confections – The Mensch on a Bench – Gelt-y Pleasure – dark chocolate – 3.5 oz candy bar wrapper – November 2015

Praim Confections - The Mensch on a Bench - Mensch Munch - milk chocolate - 3.5 oz candy bar wrapper - November 2015

Praim Confections – The Mensch on a Bench – Mensch Munch – milk chocolate – 3.5 oz candy bar wrapper – November 2015

Another specifically Hanukkah-themed candy piece I picked up this year came from one of my favorite companies, Just Born.  This comes out of their gourmet jellybean line, Teenee Beanee; a “Menorah Mix”:

Just Born - Teenee Beanee - Menorah Mix - 10oz Hanukkah jelly beans package - December 2015

Just Born – Teenee Beanee – Menorah Mix – 10oz Hanukkah jelly beans package – December 2015

Just Born - Teenee Beanee - Menorah Mix - 10oz Hanukkah jelly beans package labels - December 2015

Just Born – Teenee Beanee – Menorah Mix – 10oz Hanukkah jelly beans package labels – December 2015

Outside of those Hanukkah-themed confectionery, there is the related-yet-larger scope of kosher candy offerings.  Kosher foods are those that conform to Jewish dietary law.  It’s a little complicated but you can read more about it here.  There are many candy offerings from many companies that are certified kosher but for today’s post, I’m going to zero in on a pair of manufacturers.  Strauss-Elite from Israel and the Paskesz Candy Company from here in New York.

I first wrote about Strauss-Elite back in January of 2014 when I featured their surprising and unique Bazooka bubblegum-flavored white chocolate bar.  Still one of the most unusual bars I’ve ever sampled.

Elite produces all kinds of candy but for me the most interesting thing they make is their classic Bazooka bubblegum.   And while classic Bazooka is no longer offered by Topps here in the United States (they’ve updated their formula and flavors here to meet contemporary tastes), you can still get the original from Elite.  Take a look at a recent package I picked up:

Elite - Bazooka original flavor - 6 3/4 oz Kosher bubblegum package - 2014

Elite – Bazooka original flavor – 6 3/4 oz Kosher bubblegum package – 2014

Elite’s Bazooka bubblegum is fully-licensed and tastes exactly like the Bazooka that I grew up with.  It’s awesome and even includes the comics (though I admittedly couldn’t read these).

Israel - Elite - Bazooka original flavor - individual Kosher bubblegum wrapper and comic - 2014

Elite – Bazooka original flavor – individual Kosher bubblegum wrapper and comic – 2014

Heading back Stateside I want to take a look at the Paskesz Candy Company.  Though their history and origins trace back to Hungary before World War 2, the modern Paskesz was founded and remains based in Brooklyn, New York.  Today they are the leading kosher consumer product company with an impressive variety of products available.

The earliest Paskesz piece in my collection dates back to the mid-1970’s.  I believe this was their kosher version of a Now & Later candy:

Paskesz - Chew Chew Squares - Cherry - 1.76oz Kosher candy wrapper - 1970's

Paskesz – Chew Chew Squares – Cherry – 1.76 oz Kosher candy wrapper – 1970’s

Here’s a side-by-side look at Paskesz’ Chew Chew Squares next to a similar Now & Later package from the same era:

Paskesz - Chew Chew Squares - and Now and Laters side-by-side 1970's

Paskesz – Chew Chew Squares – and Now and Laters side-by-side 1970’s

It’s clear to me that producing kosher versions of popular consumer edibles was a big factor in Paskesz’ success and popularity.  It just makes sense that they would work to fill this significant market niche.

Here’s an example of a 1970’s wrapper for a Paskesz Peanut Chews bar:

Paskesz - Peanut Chews - 3oz Kosher candy bar wrapper - late 1970's

Paskesz – Peanut Chews – 3oz Kosher candy bar wrapper – late 1970’s

Jumping from the 1970’s to today, Paskesz now offers a wonderfully-packaged line-up of sour candy treats.  Here are a few I’ve picked up:

Paskesz - 4x4 Sour Belts Peel-a-Flavor - 2.65oz Kosher candy package - 2014

Paskesz – 4×4 Sour Belts Peel-a-Flavor – 2.65oz Kosher candy package – 2014

Paskesz - Sour Stix Mix - 1.4 oz Kosher candy package - 2014

Paskesz – Sour Stix Mix – 1.4 oz Kosher candy package – 2014

Next up are what I believe are kosher versions of Dorval’s Sour Power Straws.  I didn’t find the Dorval name on the Paskesz versions, but when the word “sour” in the logo is exactly the same as the Dorval version and the mascots are so similar, it’s hard to not make the connection:

Sour Sticks and Dorval Sour Power Straws side-by-side

Sour Sticks and Dorval Sour Power Straws side-by-side

Paskesz - Sour Sticks Strawberry - 1.75oz Kosher candy package - 2014

Paskesz – Sour Sticks Strawberry – 1.75oz Kosher candy package – 2014

Paskesz - Sour Sticks Apple - 1.75oz Kosher candy package - 2014

Paskesz – Sour Sticks Apple – 1.75oz Kosher candy package – 2014

Paskesz - Sour Sticks Raspberry - 3.5oz Kosher candy package - 2014

Paskesz – Sour Sticks Raspberry – 3.5oz Kosher candy package – 2014

Finally, I’d like to wrap up with two items that have come out of a Paskesz partnership with Haribo.  In this case, rather than come up with a unique kosher version of the Haribo products, they’ve instead co-branded – and I think that makes these packages especially cool:

Haribo - Paskesz - Clown Fish - gummy - 5.29oz Kosher gummi candy package - 2015

Haribo – Paskesz – Clown Fish – gummy – 5.29oz Kosher gummi candy package – 2015

Haribo - Paskesz - Gold-Bears - gummy bears - 5.29oz Kosher gummi candy package - 2015

Haribo – Paskesz – Gold-Bears – gummy bears – 5.29oz Kosher gummi candy package – 2015

Pretty neat, don’t you think?

That’s everything I’ve got to share for today.  To all of my Jewish friends and visitors, I hope you have a Happy Hanukkah.  See you next time!

CC_Kosher Mensch CLOSING IMAGE

About Jason Liebig

A New York City based writer, editor and sometimes actor. After spending much of the 1990′s in the comic book business helping tell the stories of Marvel Comics’ X-Men as series editor, he has since split his time between developing his own entertainment properties while still consulting and working on others. Having been described as “the Indiana Jones of lost and forgotten candy”, Jason is one of the country’s premier candy collectors and historians with his discoveries appearing in countless blogs, magazines, newspaper articles, and books. Always happy to share his knowledge and unique perspectives on this colorful part of our popular culture, Jason has consulted with New York’s Museum of Food and Drink and has also been a featured guest on Food Network’s Heavyweights, France’s M6 Capital, and New York’s TheActionRoom.com. My Google Profile+
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1 Response to Happy Hanukkah With Paskesz Kosher Candy and More!

  1. Pingback: You’ve Been Booed! Praim’s History of Fun Halloween Chocolate Bars! | CollectingCandy.com

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