by Sara Mead
For someone who likes candy, I’m not a fan of Hershey’s kisses. I find them grainy and pretty weak in the flavor department. I’m not one of those people who holds chocolate us as being above all other candies, but if I’m going to eat chocolate, I’m going to eat CHOCOLATE, goshdurnit, and regular Hershey’s kisses just don’t cut it. I make an exception, though, at the holidays, when Hershey’s rolls out a dizzying array of “special for the holidays” kisses, including Mint Truffle, shown above, and Cherry Cordial, below. I’m a sucker for anything that combines mint and chocolate, so the chocolate truffle is a clear winner with me, but what really makes me happy at the holidays is the Cherry Cordial kisses. Cherry Cordials were always my favorites in the Whitman’s Sampler candy boxes my grandfather always brought us every year for Christmas, and I always regarded is as tragic that there was only one in the box (and too often my dad or sister got to it first!). The Hershey’s Cherry Cordials are a great Cherry Cordial knock-off that lets me enjoy the taste of Cherry Cordial in far greater quantities than are good for me.
All that said, if there’s a Hershey’s product I really associate with Christmas, it’s got to be Hershey’s Special Dark. I know normal people don’t think of this as a Christmas candy, but I always do because it’s my dad’s favorite candy and that always meant that, between the large Special Dark bar that Santa (aka my mom) put in his stocking, and the many Special Dark bars his staff and students gave him as Christmas gifts (my dad’s a retired high school principal), our house was well-stocked with Special Dark bars come the holidays. The new vogue for dark chocolate has, thankfully, made Special Dark bars more common than they were in my youth (not to mention introducing a whole new market of gourmet ultra-dark bars from more prestigious brands), and my mom is making sure my dad’s not eating as many Special Darks as he used to, but this is still my favorite Christmas chocolate treat.