Sweeten up for Easter Sunday at local candy shops
For some people, spring is a time for renewal of mind, body and spirit. But first there’s Easter candy.
Here are some local spots molding bunnies of all shapes and sizes for your Easter basket bliss.
Gertrude Hawk is known for its smidgens, little poppable (so excessively addictive) bunnies with fillings like peanut butter, caramel, coconut custard, cookies and cream, or the new dark chocolate brownie a la mode flavor. There are also pastel-colored bunny smidgens if your basket needs some pop, or MLB baseball-shaped peanut butter smidgens for the sports nuts in your life Coats & Jackets.
There’s a ‘buy two packs, get one free’ offer for smidgens on the Gertrude Hawk website. There are, of course, larger bunnies to choose from, including sugar-free ones, chocolate eggs and chocolate-covered, apples topped with chicks. The company is based in Pennsylvania.
GO: Poughkeepsie Galleria, US Route 9, Old Post Rd Hats & Caps., Space C214, Poughkeepsie, 845-298-8446. gertrudehawkchocolates.com
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Alps Sweet Shop
Find varieties of bunnies from solid to hollow starting at $1.25 all the way up to $195. There are also chocolate baskets, jelly beans, Peeps and other sweets, but chocolate covered potato chips are a bestseller, said co-owner Sally Craft. The shop is celebrating 95 years in Beacon. “It’s a happy place,” Craft said. Alps also sponsors a local Easter Egg Hunt, April 15.
GO: 269 Main St., Beacon, 845-831-8240, alpssweetshop.com
This is where the real peeps are: homemade marshmallow peeps made of organic cane sugar and natural dyes. “They are the difference between having store-bought packaged mozzarella and fresh handpulled mozzarella Competitive Swimwear,” said Dana Devine O’Malley, who owns Five Hens Baked Goods at the Chocolate Studio. She makes the peeps every year. You can also find chocolate peanut cups, chocolate-covered Oreos and other spring-colored chocolatey delights.
GO: 496 Main St., Beacon, 845-765-1165, chocolatestudiobeacon.com
Samuel’s Sweet Shop
When John Traver was 15 years old and got his first real job at a candy shop, he didn’t think it might turn into a career. He became very close with the former owner, who passed away three years ago. Now Traver is manager and partner of the shop Clothing, along with celeb co-owners Paul Rudd and Jeffrey Dean Morgan.
Easter treats here include panoramic, see-through eggs, “an old-timey thing,” Traver said, salted caramel eggs, old-fashioned marshmallow eggs, chocolate bunnies and chocolate-covered Peeps. The shop also has old-fashioned jelly beans.
If you can’t make up your mind, try a bright Easter bark with milk and white chocolate, jelly beans, Cadbury mini eggs, bunnies and crunchy sprinkles. “I love the colors of Easter; it’s very cheery,” Traver said. There’s also Easter candy in the bulk bins, and a new treat called “Something Fishy Plus-Size,” with milk or white chocolate, Swedish fish and Pepperidge Farm Goldfish crackers. There’s carrot cake, too, if you want to feel healthy.
GO: 42 East Market St., Rhinebeck, 845-876-5312, samuelssweetshop.com
Award-winning artisan, fair-trade, organic chocolate that utilizes herbs, spices and exotic fruits can make a sunny Easter basket. Find chocolate carrots, Maynard rabbits, a rabbit riding a Harley and cartons of chocolate-bathed Peeps. For a special gift, there’s Alice’s Easter Shoe, a 4-ounce lavender shoe inspired by Alice in Wonderland and made of dark chocolate. Don’t forget the buttercrunch cream toffee bark, which may be difficult to share.
GO: 18 West Market St., Rhinebeck, 845-876-2665, oliverkita.com
Kingston Candy Bar
Large bunnies filled with homemade peanut butter cream or marshmallow (marshmallow from scratch is the best) highlight the happy, hoppy offerings at Kingston Candy Bar. Their solid dark chocolate bar is the bestseller, but there are also cookies filled with Peeps and bunny bark. All the makings for a solid Easter basket can be found here, and many are covered in chocolate.