Sweet Dreams at The Treat Kitchen

Sadly, the one bastion of independent trading at Leicester’s Highcross, The Treat Kitchen are no longer operating there due to issues renegotiating the lease. However, they have still sent me a load of tasty treats to review! So, let’s ignore the negatives and look at the positives. They may no longer have a Leicester outpost, but their stores continue in Nottingham, Derby and Sheffield and of course you can order online, so I’m sure this family business will continue to grow!

So I got some mates around and we had a little nibble to see what we think. Following in their family’s confectionary footsteps, Jess & Martin started with a fudge kitchen in the first Treat Kitchen in the hope of creating something a bit more lively and dramatic than the traditional, glorious – but slightly static sweet shop. From there they have expanded, doing awesome ranges of wedding favours, old fashioned favourites as well as gourmet ranges, hampers, corporate gifts and more. You name it, if you can get away with including sweets in it, The Treat Kitchen are on it.

We tried a selection, including fizzy cola bottles – a treat from my childhood, I don’t know what’s not to like about these. I found these were less chewy than the ones I remembered from when I was little, but the sugar coating had the same initial crunchy hit and super sugary cola flavour, before melting away in your mouth as you chewed.

The gourmet gummies were by far my favourite. They’re quite big, individually – definitely a mouthful, and a slightly softer gummy sweet. I really liked the (admittedly pretty synthetic, but hey, we’re reviewing sweets here!) raspberry flavour, although I’ll confess I didn’t get any hint of prosecco. These sweets come in a jam jar with an easily removed label so the jar can be re-used immediately. Indeed the Treat Kitchen pride themselves on this, having good quality, durable packaging that you can upcycle. They even give you lots of handy hints and tips about how to re-use the packets on their social media. I shall try to do something fun with my jar when the sweets are finally all gone. Who knows? I might make some jam to put in it.

The bubblegum cubes are next up. These are a sugar free sweet and hint at the many ranges the Treat Kitchen offers for special dietary requirements. You can search the website by dietary requirement which is really helpful – vegetarian, vegan, egg free, dairy free, alcohol free and more – so it’s easy to find something to suit you. The Boy described these as having less of a bubblegum flavour than he expected and having the texture of chalk, which I found kind of odd as a description, but I can see where he’s coming from. Since he finished the packet off, I guess his review counts for the most. And he had no idea they were sugar-free until I pointed it out to him, so bonus points there.

Finally, it’s the giant test tube of radioactive sours. I’ll be honest, I don’t know what this is for. It’s sour sherbert and I have no idea what to do with that volume. I think it would be too much decorating cupcakes and I don’t really fancy sticking a licked lolly in it a la dib dab. It makes me wonder if I’m getting too old, when I don’t just take every opportunity to pour as much sugar down my throat as I can. I guess my palate has changed. You can’t please everyone I suppose. I can’t remember the last time I ate a sugar cube either, and I thought that was brilliant when I was younger.

So, good quality sweets, nicely presented, with speedy delivery. Head on over to their website and have a browse – I’m sure you’ll find something to suit any occasion. I’m sorry we won’t be having a physical shop here in Leicester any more, but I know I can easily order something up online when the need arises!


Bestselling author and freelance drinks writer. Champion of pubs and breweries. Occasional printmaker.

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