Bubbaloo Strawberry

This review is sponsored by our friends at BestCandyStore.com!

Flavor : Shannon gave me a bag of different kind of gums to sample, and I accidentally left it in my purse and brought it to work with me. The strawberry scent that permeated through the plastic bag was so strong that I was actually embarrassed someone would say something about it while chatting in my office. If it were a perfume, it would come with a doll sold in the pink aisle of the toy store. As a gum, the flavor is your standard sugary strawberry. Overall, the flavor works, but the smell does not– as I chew it right now, my boyfriend said, unprovoked from across the room, “That stuff smells disgusting.” The flavor fades pretty quickly, too.

Texture : As opposed to Shannon’s review of Bubbaloo Bubble Gum, the goo in this gum is quite pleasant. After about five minutes of chewing, however, the piece is disappointingly small, lending itself to tiny, unsatisfying bubbles.

Presentation : This is another gum that seems to only be available in those big candy jugs for ten cents a piece in fun stores like Five Below. Since this gum is just ok, I think that throwing it in with a handful of other juice-filled flavors would definitely be the way to enjoy it, and so it works, for what it is.

Overall : I wouldn’t recommend this flavor to adults, unless you’re looking to really annoy a whole bunch of people in a staff meeting. As far as kids go, go on and throw a couple pieces in with your basket of goodies the next time you find yourself in a cool candy store.

Rating : ooo (three gumballs )

Razzles

Flavor: Oh, Razzles. “First it’s Candy… Then it’s Gum!” Razzles are one of those gums, like Juicy Fruit, that is going to be very hard to categorize. They’re just Razzles, you know? Did you know that the red is supposed to be Rasbperry, not Cherry? I didn’t… and now that I know? I still kinda don’t. I don’t think that the target audience of Razzles really pays attention to the flavor, though. In the interest of science, I’ll describe it thusly: Razzles are vaguely fruit-flavored, and incredibly sweet. Flavor fades in a record-breaking quickness.

Texture: The texture is what Razzles is all about. They’re an anomaly of the gum and candy universe, and I still don’t know how they do it. If you’ve never eaten a Razzle before, you’re really missing out. On first bite, they crumble in the mouth not unlike an antacid tablet, and just before your throat gets ready to instinctively swallow the chalkiness, it begins to congeal, and you’re left with a wad of gum. It’s pretty amazing if you’ve never experienced it before, and fantastically nostalgic if it’s been a while since you’ve had them. Also? It’s disgusting.

Presentation: A few months ago, I bought a packet of these in the drug store to review, but I ate them all before I got the chance to. Luckily a very special Gum Alert reader sent us a pack she found in her local store, packaged for what looks like Halloween. In both cases, a blue “sunburst” is the backdrop for a large, playful Razzles logo, and some computer-generated renditions of Razzles pieces. It’s simple, yet eye-catching. No eleven year-old could possibly resist it.

Overall: Razzles is one of those gums that’s so special, so near and dear, that it’s impossible to not give it five gumballs; It would just be wrong. So, despite the horridness of texture, the sickeningly sugar-sweetness, Razzles earns a place in our coveted five-gumball elite. (And special thanks to Aunt Ann for making this review possible.)
Rating: o o o o o (five gumballs)

Extra Sour Cry Baby Bubble Gum

Flavor : A colleague brought me a handful of individually wrapped gumballs from his stash at home to review (thanks, Matt!), and I was surprised to discover that there’s an audience out there for this gum other than ten year old kids competing with these and Warheads on the playground. When I commented on this peculiarity, he said matter-of-factly, “When I do something, I go all the way.” And boy, does he ever. I chose the red as the first to review, and the first ten seconds of chewing were super intense, mildly cherry flavored, but mostly super sour sugary yowee zowee, oh man, holy cow– and then it was over, just like that, the electric sensation vanishing away, becoming your ordinary blob of Dubble Bubble. Next up was the orange. Much more sour, but also much more delicious, tasting a lot more like an actual orange than the red tasted like cherry. Upon chewing the yellow gumball, I began to sweat. Much like the cherry, the yellow gumball lacks an individual flavor, but is just as shocking. In the interest of my health, I’m going to try the other two flavors at a later date and report back in a comment. I think I just felt a cavity form. Maybe two.

Texture : Oh, it’s awful, so awfully, awfully, terribly good. All the flavor is in the powder, and you can feel its chalky goodness between your teeth for the first ten seconds. Then, much like the flavor, the texture calms into the texture of, you guessed it, Dubble Bubble. Upon my third gumball, though, the chalky goodness became a beast unto itself– soon my teeth started squeaking while I was chewing, and I’m not talking your average rubber-gum squeak, it was a weird fingernails-on-chalkboard kind of squeak. Once the gum was out of my mouth for good, it felt like my teeth were completely stripped of enamel and the inside of my cheeks had a layer of tissue shorn from them. Ah, childhood.

Presentation : It’s your standard jug-o-sugar packaging, clear plastic outside and neon goodness on the inside. I was unaware until now that Dubble Bubble is actually printed on the label of this gum, which explains the similarities in the base. What I think I like most about the packaging, though, is that this is Extra Sour Cry Baby Bubble Gum. As if someone chewed the original and said something like, “I said I wanted to go all the way. Take it up a notch.”

Overall : If you’re looking to just, you know, chew some gum after a meal, or freshen your breath, or satisfy that sweet tooth, read on and find some other gum in our blog to sample. But if you’re looking to take it to the next level, pop five of these suckers in your mouth without taking a drink of water. I dare you. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go brush the remainder of my teeth. Twice.

Rating : ooooo (five gumballs )

Bubbaloo Bubble Gum

This review is sponsored by our friends at BestCandyStore.com!

Flavor: Oh, Bubbaloo. How I love you so. Bubbaloo doesn’t mess around when it comes to flavor. This gum is labeled “Bubble Gum,” and it most certainly is a great classic bubble gum flavor. I think the goo burst is a little unnecessary here, it’s a little too mediciney for my personal taste, but it fades away fast enough and you’re left with just the perfect bubblegummy goodness.

Texture: Bubbaloo, will you marry me? (Sorry, husband.) It’s smooth in the mouth, easy to spread on the tongue, and the bubbles are phenomenal. While I certainly don’t want to experiment with blowing giant bubbles and popping them all over my glasses, it’s not as sticky as a lot of sugar-based bubblegums… it comes off the lips and chin pretty easily.

Presentation: It’s packaged the exact same way as its sister, Bubbaloo Sour Cherry, so the same applies here.
Overall: If I were stuck on a desert island and could only have one Bubble Gum flavored gum, it probably wouldn’t be Bubbaloo because it would give me cavities and there’d be no dentist there to fill them. But since I’m not on a desert island, I would probably choose Bubbaloo if I had a hankering for Bubble Gum, because I don’t really want it that often and dental care is widely available.
Rating: ooooo (five gumballs)

Hubba Bubba Max Strawberry Watermelon

This review is sponsored by our friends at BestCandyStore.com!

Flavor : Unlike many of its sister gums (Hubba Bubba Sweet n’ Sassy Cherry, for instance), this gum does not pack a sour punch, not even a little. It’s as sweet as a sugar cube, with a hint of watermelon. The first bite was really pleasant, your standard fake-watermelon flavor that doesn’t at all come close to real watermelon (but then, if it did, kids probably wouldn’t beg their parents for dollar bills to buy it with their friends at 7-11). The strawberry and watermelon are both present, and the flavor is simple and fairly classic in terms of Hubba Bubba-esque gums.

Texture : The chunks are huge! It’s like stuffing a big old hunk of taffy in your mouth on the boardwalk, a true delight. The chew is hearty and consistent for at least ten minutes, which says a lot for a sugar-based gum. The bubbles are, as with all Hubba Bubba, really impressive.

Presentation : I was curious what qualities made this particular Hubba Bubba “max,” and discovered on the Wrigley website this explanation: “…Hubba Bubba Max gum – a unique and captivating product with extraordinarily long lasting flavor and the combinations of two colors and two flavors in one chunk.” I don’t know that the flavor of this gum is “extraordinarily long lasting,” although it does last longer than I remember the original Hubba Bubba lasting when I was a kid. The hunks themselves seem to me to be much larger, and since things usually seem smaller the older you get, I’m assuming that the size of the pieces must have actually increased in size over time.

Overall : I wouldn’t pick this one over, say, Bubblicious Cotton Candy or the aforementioned Hubba Bubba Sweet n’ Sassy Cherry. When compared to some of the other gums that punch you in the face with flavor, this one really doesn’t stand on its own. But it is what it is, and I’m sure it’s plenty of kids’ favorite.

Rating : oooo (four gumballs )

Bubbaloo Peppermint

This review is sponsored by our friends at BestCandyStore.com!

Flavor: It’s a nice peppermint flavor, not too strong and not too weak. It’s definitely a breath freshener. It’s got an initial burst of goo inside that doesn’t blow you away, but is nice “for a change.”

Texture: This is a weird one. I don’t really understand the deal with peppermint-flavored bubblegums. While the gum itself is a fine texture, and blows fantastic bubbles like its sister gum, Bubbaloo Sour Cherry, I don’t think that peppermint is a very logical bubble-blowing choice. It kinda hurts! Like, you blow a bubble, and when it gets big, either A.) it pops, or B.) you have to suck it back in. With A, you get a minty blast into your eyes that stings. And with B, the minty air inside the bubble unpleasantly fills your sinuses and esophagus. Minty gums should be reserved for the breath-freshening varieties, I think.

Presentation: See my review of Bubbaloo Sour Cherry, it’s the same thing with this one.

Overall: This is a difficult one to rate overall. Like, I want to rate it highly because it has a fantastic texture and taste, but the design is just all wrong. I guess I’ll have to err on the positive side, because really, the target market for this gum is kids, and I guess kids like a borderline painful experience. Makes it more EXXXTREEEEEEME or something.
Rating: oooo (four gumballs)

(Kosher Parve) Bazooka

Flavor : I don’t speak Hebrew, but based on the comic strip that’s wrapped around this piece of gum and that says in big English bubble letters “Bazooka Joe,” I’m going to go out on a limb here and say this is Bazooka bubble gum. It tastes like it, anyhow– simple, classic. It’s sugar and gum base, sweet and bubblegummy. We had a request a while back from readers who were looking for kosher gum. This one was in the kosher section of our local supermarket, and it’s as good as gum gets– it’s Bazooka, for crying out loud.

Texture : Come on, close your eyes and remember– it’s hard at first, then soft and grainy like a gob composed of lots of very fine sugar, and then it’s hard as a rock and basically flavorless after about five minutes chewing. Also, it sort of sticks to caps (an observation I admittedly didn’t have as a child, with all my baby teeth intact). Aaah, five cent childhood, how sweet you are.

Presentation : It looks just like you remember it, too. Red, blue and white paper folded along with an (presumably amusing) comic strip starring good ol’ Bazooka Joe, around a brick-hard pink block of gum. The comics were never really funny, I don’t recall ever quite laughing out loud. But who knows… maybe this one is side-splitting. I’ll tell you what– if anyone can translate this comic strip, I’ll send you a whole bunch of kosher gum as a thank you.

Overall : I don’t think I’d ever pick up a piece of Bazooka just for kicks anymore. But it sure was nice to pick up this kosher parve piece and make sure that it was indeed true to the classic original we all know and love.

Rating : ooooo (five gumballs ) What did you expect? It’s Bazooka.

Bubbaloo Sour Cherry

This review is sponsored by our friends at BestCandyStore.com!

Flavor: Oh, MAN is this gum good. Like, for serious, guys. It’s got a liquid center that offers just the perfect amount of soury goodness before fading into this amazing artificial cherry flavor. Being a sugar-based bubblegum, the flavor doesn’t last very long, but that’s to be expected. This is a gum for kids, and they generally don’t have an attention span worthy of a gum that lasts an Extra, Extra, Extra long time. Yes, this is a worthy bubblegum, one that every kid should have in their backpack at all times.

Texture: MAN! This gum is GOOD! It starts out with the delightful aforementioned liquid center explosion and it just goes from good to great. I’d put this in my top 5, nay, my top 3 all-time bubble blowing gums. This gum blows a mean bubble (take note if you’re still looking for a gum to use to enter our Bubble Blowing Contest) and it’s not overly sticky like some other bubblegums out there. Though I admit I haven’t been courageous enough to blow a bubble big enough that it coats my classes upon bursting, I certainly don’t have any issues getting it off of my face or lips at all. (ETA: I just burst a bubble all over my glasses, and while it left a smudge, it came RIGHT off with no sticky residue!) The texture is soft, but not mushy. Firm, but not hard. It’s “slick” and “shiny” or “smooth” in the mouth, the type of texture I yearn for when I chew gum.

Presentation: Our friend at BestCandyStore.com sent us four flavors of Bubbaloo in a boxes that opens to be displays. A quick google image search leads me to believe that this is the only way Bubbaloo is packaged. It’s a shame, because this gum surely deserves a spot next to the Hubba Bubbas and Bubbliciouses of the world. I’ve never, to my knowledge, even seen it on a counter in a store – I would think that merchants would hesitate to put out this type of display in this day and age, with theft and all. However, a box of 60 of them is only $3.89 over at BestCandyStore.com, and it would totally be worth it if you can’t find them anywhere else.

Overall: MAN, THIS GUM IS GOOD!!!!

Rating: ooooo (five gumballs)

Ice Breakers Ice Cubes Cool Lemon

Flavor : This gum was recommended to us by our friend Sydney upon reading our review of Ice Cubes Peppermint. The initial punch is really successful– I found it hard to believe that it was sugar free. A few summers ago I ordered fresh lemonade on the boardwalk and was shocked upon first sip to find a gritty mouthful of sweetness with very little detectable lemon flavor. The attendant had thought he was doing me a favor by slipping me a few extra spoonfuls of sugar, when in fact I actually would have preferred the tart of fresh squeezed lemonade. That’s what the first bite of Ice Cubes Cool Lemon is like– a great big burst of lemon-flavored sugar. It fades quickly, but the lingering flavor maintains the pleasant, if a bit too-sweet, lemonade freshness. I would expect a gum called Cool Lemon to be more sour than sweet. If it were called lemonade, however, I might go into it expecting a much sweeter blast of flavor.

Texture : Much like in the first strawful of lemonade that day on the Jersey Shore, I can’t get past the grittiness of this gum. The crunchies are never crunchy, rather they’re distracting and stick to your teeth and make for a very unpleasant first minute or two before dissolving into a piece that’s just too small for lasting satisfaction.

Presentation : I feel like the marketing on this gum was half baked. The package is a faded yellow, so faded that it’s even difficult to decipher the graphics on the front. The ice cube in the graphic does appear to be a giant sugar cube, which is quite accurate, but I’m not sure that’s intentional. “Cool Lemon” says little to nothing here, and I don’t know what cravings I’m supposed to conjure up looking at slices of lemon and giant urine-colored blocks. I’m being harsh, I know. I just think that “Summer Lemonade” would sell more packages of this particular flavor of gum.

Overall : I may have cringed at the first sip of lemonade that day, but boy did I drink it down. It’s doubtful, however, that I’ll finish this pack of gum. Sydney sure liked it, though… so perhaps it’s a matter of preference. I say, if what I’ve described sounds good to you, go for it. If not, just buy some lemons and put some in your tea like you do every night, like I do.

Rating : ooo ( three gumballs )

Bubblicious Cotton Candy

This review is sponsored by our friends at BestCandyStore.com!

Flavor: True. The label says cotton candy, and this gum tastes like cotton candy. Exactly. Like. Cotton candy. Although, if you think about it, that’s really not that great of an achievement for a sugar-based gum. All cotton candy is, is sugar and flavor, and the ingredients of this gum are ridiculously simple, consisting of little more than sugar, corn syrup, gum base and flavor.

Texture: Eh. It actually starts off somewhat firmer than other bubblegums and never really gets that “smooth” or “shiny” feel to it. The bubbles are unimpressive, very thin and quick to burst. If you’re looking for a bubblegum to use to enter our Bubble-Blowing Contest, this isn’t it.

Presentation: You know, in terms of kid-focused product packaging, this is really minimalist. The pink and the blue works for the flavor, and it has the now-familiar trendy swirl thing going on, but if I were a kid I’d absolutely be drawn to Hubba Bubba over Bubblicious.

Overall: I’ve been chewing a lot of bubblegum lately thanks to the awesome package that BestCandyStore.com sent over, and I gotta say that this one is one of my least favorites. It’s cool that the flavor is so spot-on, but it lacks in nearly every other feature. Worth a try, but there are better bubblegums (as you’ll see…).

Rating: ooo (three gumballs)