The latest addition to the complex’s impressive roster of retailers is Dylan’s Candy Bar, an impressive boutique-style candy store that puts your local Sweet Factory to shame.
Founded by Dylan Lauren, daughter of fashion mogul Ralph Lauren, the first store opened in New York City in 2001, and has since grown into a chain with locations in the Hamptons, Houston, Miami and finally Los Angeles.
Those who possess a sweet tooth will drool over every aspect of this shop, starting with its glossy decor. If the gigantic plastic sculptures of lollipop trees, oversized candy buttons and melting chocolate bars don’t evoke images from the original Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory film, your childhood must have been a waste. Incidentally, according to the store’s website, a viewing of Willy Wonka at Dylan’s fifth birthday party sparked her goal to open her own candy store.
Today, the presentation of the candy alone lures customers in; everything has its place, in neat rows, columns and piles, color-coded even more expertly than an American Apparel store. Even the wrapping on each product is mouth-watering with vibrant but simple candy-inspired colors like cotton candy pink and Lemonhead yellow.
But even if it’s the shop’s aesthetic that will draw you in, the candy will keep you inside. Dylan’s offers an astoundingly wide selection of confections, ranging from the signature line of Belgian chocolate bars to retro favorites like Wax Lips and Pez. Dylan’s also carries boxed gift sets of mini chocolate bars and chocolate-drizzled snacks: pretzels, popcorn, gummy bears, fruit, nuts and more. Luckily, Dylan’s employees frequently roam around the store with trays of free samples, allowing patrons to taste that banana-cream-pie-flavored chocolate bar without having to commit to a curiosity purchase.
It’s not an exaggeration to say that every item for sale here is tempting to buy, whether for decadent flavors or pure novelty, but a few items stand out.
The bar of Bacon-Flavored Milk Chocolate cements Dylan’s Candy Bar’s cultural relevance with its participation in the bacon-flavored-everything fad. Another real standout is the Goo Goo Cluster Supreme, a reissue of the 1912 classic bar, which consists of caramel, pecans and marshmallow nougat surrounded by milk chocolate. Also impressive are the cookies ‘n’ cream-drizzled popcorn boxes, mega-sized candy buttons in classic flavors and a hilariously titled classic, the Squirrel Nut Zipper — a chewy caramel combined with chunks of peanuts.
Other highlights include themed display tables. The election-centered table boasts donkey-and-elephant-shaped lollipops, President Barack Obama action figures, tubs of red, white and blue jawbreakers and sugar cookies decorated with stars and stripes.
Another table features candies bizarrely modeled after savory foods — lollipops shaped like pickles, T-bone steaks, lobster claws and Thanksgiving turkeys come to mind. Also present here are bacon-flavored lollipops, chewing gum, gummy strips and dental floss, as well as roast beef-flavored breath mints and wasabi gumballs. A third table is filled with sweet confections for dogs. Any pampered L.A. pooch will love these pet-friendly frosted cookies, faux truffles, small cakes or even a Dylan’s-themed leash and collar set.
The products in this store look so tantalizing, you’ll wish you looked like them. And thankfully, you can — Dylan’s Candy Bar sells T-shirts, tank tops, tote bags, hats, jewelry, rain gear and even school supplies, all emblazoned with bold color schemes and the Dylan’s logo.
Entering Dylan’s Candy Bar is simply an extreme sensory experience. If you find yourself at The Grove, it’s definitely fun to at least pop your head in the door.
Unfortunately, though the sheer visual beauty of the shop makes it worth at least one visit, the exorbitant prices will surely keep the average college student (and sane person) from becoming a frequent customer.