World’s first Sour Patch Kids store opens in New York City

A view of the Sour Patch Kids Store in NYC, where the superior blue Sour Patch Kid has rightfully been selected to portray the Statue Of Liberty
A view of the Sour Patch Kids Store in NYC, where the superior blue Sour Patch Kid has rightfully been selected to portray the Statue Of Liberty
Image: Mondelez International

Did you know that Sour Patch Kids have been around for 35 years now? These Millennials have have grown up right before our very eyes. To celebrate 3.5 decades of the Kids’ puckery exploits, parent company Mondelez International is opening the very first Sour Patch Kids store at Broadway and Bond in New York City.

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The new store is 3,300 square feet, and both the photos and this virtual tour video featured in the press release show a pretty sizable interactive confectionery. “Visitors will get a chance to create their own candy mix, pose with the Kids inside a full-size yellow taxi, and experience a first-of-its-kind SOUR PATCH KIDS Sweets Bar with treats to-go,” says the press release. “Chefs have reimagined classic desserts and put a sour-then-sweet spin on smoothies, ice cream, cookies, edible cookie dough made in collaboration with DŌ, Cookie Dough Confections and more.”

The store is a collaboration between Sour Patch Kids and IT’SUGAR, the latter of which is a big, splashy candy retail chain that has been described in the past (by me) as “a monument to corporatized brand optimization that happens to sell a bit of candy on the side” and “not spiritually a sweets shop at all.” While this continues to be the case, throwing IT’SUGAR levels of funding behind a store dedicated to one type of candy—a candy that has both a delicious flavor and a strong brand identityactually makes a kind of sense: it allows the shop to go deep on its merchandise concepts and act like it really cares about the particular magic of Sour Patch Kids (as we all should). Perusing the Sweets Bar menu below, I know I would be very excited to try the “Sour. Sweet. Smoothie,” described as “soft serve ice cream blended with Sour Patch flavored swirl and Sour Patch candy pieces topped with whipped cream and Sour Patch Kids bitz.” There are bitz now? I didn’t know there were bitz! (By the way, if anyone is interested in seeing how on earth the rainbow cake shake is served, you can catch a glimpse at around 0:45 in the video tour.)

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The Sweets Bar menu features Sour Patch inspired creations
The Sweets Bar menu features Sour Patch inspired creations
Image: Mondelez International

This is a permanent location, not a pop-up shop, so hopefully anyone interested in paying a visit to the Sour Patch Kids store will have ample opportunity to do so whenever they feel safe to venture out to major NYC shopping districts once more. To that end, the press release included a section on COVID-19 safety precautions, which I’ve included below for posterity; it’s a fascinating relic of a very particular moment in PR history.

The Kids may like pranks, but they know visitors’ safety is no joke. For now, the SOUR PATCH KIDS Store has lowered its maximum capacity to allow enough room for social distancing, and all visitors are required to wear face coverings. Additionally, the Sweets Bar will only feature a to-go menu until the city permits indoor dining. At the SOUR PATCH KIDS candy station, tongs and scoops are regularly sanitized, and visitors who want to create their own candy mix are required to use disposable gloves. A full list of precautions the SOUR PATCH KIDS Store is taking to keep all visitors safe is available at sourpatchkids.com/store_nyc.

Marnie Shure is editor in chief of The Takeout.

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DISCUSSION

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Burners Baby Burners: Discussion Inferno

Did you know that Sour Patch Kids have been around for 35 years now?

Nothing personal, Marnie, but for the next few minutes, I hate you. I am old and this only reminded me that I’m very old, so I hate you. It’s not personal. I’ll get over it.

I remember being in 5th grade when the sour candy craze was blowing up, we’d hang out after school at the local mini-mart with its handful of video games in the back, they had just started stocking JOLT Cola, Nerds had just become a candy that was my new love, Garbage Pail Kids were the fun trading card and sticker purchase, Haribo and Black Forest twin cherries were finally being found outside the German import shop, we could get knockoff Pixie Stix for a penny each, there were sour belts for a dime that had a little tong so you had to get them yourself, it was great.

Then Sour Patch Kids showed up and they sucked. They’re nicely sour on the outside, but blandly sweet on the inside, suffering a texture that’s more with nary a hint of sourness once the coating was gone. They were worse than Lemonheads! I’m sure we had arguments about this in the mini mart while playing Spy Hunter, but I don’t remember having any friends who actually had the nerve to claim Sour Patch Kids were superior to any candy.

Decades later *coughing loudly* at my local supermarket, every once in a while Sour Patch Kids will go on clearance and my girlfriend will want ‘em, so I pick ‘em up and they have new styles that aren’t bad, but the originals still let me down every single time.

We did both laugh seeing Sour Patch Kids-flavored amino acids powder at the local GNC.