Big Chewy NERDS Review
Halloween in the 80s. That was my decade to shine as a kid. We planned our costumes for months. We scouted out the best houses to hit, depending on what they offered the previous year. We met up with the neighborhood kids on the corner of Rancho Drive and Clover Drive when it started getting dark, and were ready to fill up our suitcase-sized trick-or-treat bags. This was serious business. Rumors were abound at the elementary school about what our families would be handing out to trick-or-treaters. And we used our cuteness influence over our parents to stock up on our favorite candies. For me, NERDS were a necessity. When we had cruised every block, and exhausted every available means of collecting candy, we met up at my house to start the trading. If I didn’t end up with 10+ boxes of NERDS and at least 5 mini Reese’s cups, I knew I had failed.
NERDS candies will always remind me of Halloween, because it was my favorite candy. I would gladly offer a fun-size Snickers for a box of NERDS. I also had a little sister I could bamboozle into thinking that someone’s homemade popcorn ball was worth 3 boxes of NERDS. Yah, I was that kind of sister, and I feel no shame. Because…. NERDS.
In 1983, NERDS was owned by Wonka. Wonka actually owned a lot of really fun candy brands back then, and for that decade, fruity, tangy and tart candies ruled. My love of NERDS wasn’t just a personal choice – I was influenced by the flavors of the 80s, and it stuck with me my entire life. In fact, NERDS was rated the Candy of the Year in 1985. There was even a short-lived NERDS breakfast cereal. I should start a petition to bring that back. Nestlé bought out NERDS in 1988, and it just kept getting better from there with new flavors, flavor combinations and unique NERDS products.
I’m SUPER excited to try these new, Big Chewy NERDS. They promise a crunchy and chewy candy in one. Count me IN! I love that the bags are nice and big – perfect for taking to the movie theater (ok, more like sneaking them in), or munching on while on the go. I opened the bag and sniffed – they smell EXACTLY like regular NERDS, with that nondescript, super-sugary scent. Checking them out, I scaled them next to a regular NERDS candy. These are about 10x-15x bigger! The flavors are Orange You Nerdy?, Left-Click Lemon, Strawber2y Squared, and Giga Grape. Cute names, right?
These have two textures – crunchy and chewy. The bumpy, crunchy outer-shell is really fun, then inside you’ll find a fun, tart jelly bean. Talk about a match made in heaven! To my surprise, it wasn’t the Orange You Nerdy? or Left-Click Lemon flavors that were the most tart and tangy. I was anticipating that sour face babies make when they first eat a lemon. Giga Grape was by far the most flavorful of the bunch, with the most tartness. Each of the flavors is amazing and spot on, though. It’s really fun eating a crunchy NERDS jelly bean, which is what these essentially are. I was hoping for a tad bit more tang in the flavors, however, that might have over-powered the actual fruity taste. They knew what they were doing, that’s for sure. If you’re a NERDS fan, you’ll love these. I promise.
Oh, and if that isn’t enough to convince you, the Big Chewy NERDS won the Most Innovative New Product Award in the Non-Chocolate Category at the 2018 Sweets & Snacks Expo. And they totally deserve it. Sitting here eating these is making me Halloween nostalgic. I wanna dress up like Wonder Woman, and start banging on my neighbors’ doors, demanding candy. Or…. I could avoid jail and a visit to the psych ward, and just enjoy these at home.