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Scandinavian Sweets

Scandinavian Sweets

Where To Get Your Pick-And-Mix Fix

“Lördagsgodis”—or “Saturday Sweets”—encourages Swedes to feast on pick-and-mix candy one day each week. With roots in the 1950s, the tradition was an attempt to curb overindulging in sweets and preventing tooth decay—reaffirming that Scandinavia has long had an infatuation with sugary treats. In recent years, however, Nordic candy culture has crossed borders. Sate your sugar craving at these five shops across the U.S., all stocking and shipping Scandinavian sweet treats.

SOCKERBIT

The first Scandinavian candy store in the U.S., Sockerbit opened locations in New York’s West Village and West Hollywood in Los Angeles. The shop’s name translates to “sugar lump”—but unlike American candy, Scandinavian sweets are made from non-GMO ingredients and natural sweeteners and colors.

The expansive pick-and-mix wall is the main feature at Sockerbit, showcasing bins of peppermint pillows, Swedish fish, sour fruit candies, and a tempting smorgasbord of flavors from fruity to salty. Customers can also order through sockerbit.com and purchase their favorites in quarter-pound increments.

Sweetish Candy

BONBON

Ask a Swede who’s left home what they miss most about Sweden, and “they’d say candy,” says Selim Adira, one of the owners of BonBon, a Scandinavian sweet shop on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. The outpost features more than 160 types of candy, mostly from Sweden, Denmark, and Finland, with a bit of Norwegian added to the mix. While sour candy is most in-demand, licorice is the star. Adira says most patrons up for trying the chewy treat eventually become fans of Scandinavian licorice, which ranges from sweet to salty. BonBon ships worldwide, and their candies are available for delivery locally.

SCANDINAVIAN BUTIK

This Norwalk, Conn., shop and cafe is a treasure trove of all things Scandinavian with a section devoted to—you guessed it—candy. Denmark natives and friends Doris Levene and Marianne Beresford launched their Main Street store in 2010, having no idea they’d welcome shoppers from outside the state. While Scandinavian Butik attracts its share of Connecticuters, Nordic foodies, folks with Scandinavian heritage, and those who want to learn more about the culture have also become customers. The store ships to all 50 states, too.

SWEETISH CANDY

A trip to Malmö, Sweden, inspired owner Tyler Graybeal to found this Lancaster, Pa., shop in 2019. Like many Scandinavian candy stores, the boutique’s pick-and-mix collection is the heart of it, bins brimming with marshmallows, drops, and sour candies. Graybeal, who called on his technical theater background to design the space, says he imported a pick-and-mix wall structure from Sweden and a line of Scandinavian and Nordic products. The initial sugar-filled offerings, though, have grown. “We started with 64 pick-and-mix bins, and we now have over 100 choices,” he says. Sweetish’s best sellers include Malaco Pastel Fish, Fazer Tutti Frutti, sour skulls, and the classic Kex and Daim bars. Sweetish’s potpourri of sweets is also available to purchase online.

Sweetish in Lancaster, Pa., features a range of candies — and pick-and-mix containers—shipped from Scandinavia.
Sweetish in Lancaster, Pa., features a range of candies — and pick-and-mix containers—shipped from Scandinavia

GOODIO CHOCOLATE

A step away from the usual pick-and-mix candies, Goodio handcrafts vegan, organic, gluten-free chocolate in Helsinki, Finland. Started by Jukka Peltola, Goodio uses pure cacao harvested in Peru, Ecuador, and the Congo. The product is stone ground for three days to preserve its rich nutrients, then mostly organic and wild ingredients such as dried cornflower, geranium, and birch leaves are incorporated for flavor. Thereafter, it is sweetened with Indonesian and Sri Lankan coconut palm sugar. Goodio ships to Europe and the U.S. and is available in brick-and-mortar grocery and specialty stores in Scandinavia and the states.

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