Behind The Counter: See’s Candies Opens At Newport Beach Fashion Island

See the video below for a *sweet* look behind the counter at the newest See's location!

See the video below for a *sweet* look behind the counter at the newest See’s location!

Here are a few of my favorite things: Chocolate, I Love Lucy, and behind-the-scenes, hands-on experiences (if you couldn’t tell from my previous posts!).

So, when I got the chance to attend a pre-opening See’s Candies party with fellow blogger friends at Fashion Island in Newport Beach, I jumped at the chance.

I was especially excited to learn that we’d get to go behind the counter and assemble our own boxes of See’s chocolates. The first thing I thought of was the “Job Switching” episode of I Love Lucy when Lucy and Ethel work at a chocolate factory and hilarious shenanigans ensue with the speedy chocolate conveyor belt.

Turns out, that episode was filmed at the historic See’s Candies factory on La Cienega in Los Angeles!

TT Sees Candies Bordeaux

What seems to give See’s chocolates their distinct taste is their chocolate-making process, which remains consistent since the first store opening back in 1921. See’s is one of the remaining few, if not the only one, to still age its chocolate. No wonder they sell over 26 million pounds of chocolate each year!

We learned how to pack the chocolates into our boxes just like the See’s workers are expertly trained to do, and got to take home quite a few goodies as a result! So many, in fact, that it will last me a good week… unless I decide to get chocolate wasted.

TT Sees Candies Pecan

As for flavors, I got the Apple Pie & Pecan Pie seasonal holiday truffles, as well as Butterscotch (for my mom), Maple Walnut, Dark Butterchew, Dark Bordeaux (my all-time See’s favorite!!), Pecan Bud (like a turtle), plus the Peanut Butter Crunch and Strawberry flavors to make a custom creation.

Check out the behind-the-counter video below to find out what it is!

Check out this 1-minute video to go behind the counter with me at the newest See's Candies location!

Check out this 1-minute video and come behind the counter with me at the newest See’s Candies location!

What’s great about going into a See’s Candies store anytime is that you will always be treated to a free sample when you visit. With over 100 sweet varieties at each location, you can visit every day and still never get bored!

Of the multitude of chocolatey choices, See’s has kept the Bon Bon, Maple Walnut Cream, Chocolate Walnut Fudge and Victoria Toffee recipes exactly the same throughout the decades. Sometimes you just can’t change a classic.

Their top five best sellers are the Milk Bordeaux (I personally adore the dark version), the Scotchmallow, the California Brittle, the Pecan Buds and the Almond Buds. Which are your favorites?

...or do you like ALL of them? (photo via Huffington Post)

…or do you like ALL of them? (via Huffington Post)

While we’re going back in time, if you’d like Huell Howser to show you around the See’s factory from back in the day, check out this See’s Candy – California’s Gold episode.

Back to the present: the Fashion Island store just held its grand opening the very next day after I filmed the video above, and is located near Macy’s in Fashion Island at 401 Newport Center Drive, Newport Beach, CA 92660.

I already can’t wait to get back to try some more flavors… and to get another Dark Bordeaux chocolate truffle while I’m at it! See you there ;).

TEMP TT Sees Candies

Top Picks For An Epic Foodie Weekend

Copyright 2014 Tanaya Ghosh

Summer is still in full swing, with tastings and fun activities to suit everyone’s palates, from the fancy foodie to the laid-back luncher. This weekend alone happens to be gastronomically pleasing beyond belief!

Here are my picks for where to go and what to taste this weekend, from L.A. to the O.C.:

L.A. Food & Wine – The premiere foodie event– or actually, a series of events over four days… starting tonight! Renowned chefs from all over L.A. and the nation will convene to give us mouthwatering bites exploding with innovation and flavor through unique events such as Iron Chef Morimoto’s Asian Night Market, and Graham Elliot & Fabio Viviani’s Ultimate Bites of L.A. soiree. (Side note: I’m a big fan of Fabio Viviani since his Top Chef days, and he’s such a sweetheart each time I’ve met him, too. He even gave a shoutout to Tanaya’s Table last year! Who else is a Fabio Viviani fan??)

This is a can’t-miss shindig in the heart of downtown, if you’re willing to invest (quite) a bit more to get pampered at a luxe food event. I will say from the past few years covering L.A. Food & Wine that the experience you get is unparalleled, and you will have a memorable time!

Thes past posts here may help to show you the evolution of the event since 2011 (I was working & living in Hong Kong the summer 0f 2012 — the only way you can keep me away from this event is to send me to another country!):

L.A. Weekly Pancake Breakfast – I’m quite excited for this one, since brunch is my all-time favorite meal. Curated by KCRW’s Evan Kleiman, top restaurants around Los Angeles will serve their unique renditions of a classic brunch. Plus, there will be mimosas and more. Yum!

K-Town Night Market OC Block Party – Held at Angel Stadium in Orange County. Music and masses of people, plus traditional and Asian-inspired food will be served. With SIX (yes, six!) consecutive food events to cover over the course of these next four days, I’m still bummed I’ll be missing this one!

If you’re missing them but wish you weren’t, I will be covering a good portion of these, and will take you with me through the videos, photos and stories to come! It’ll be like you were right there with me, minus the calories ;).

BONUS: L.A. Times’ The Taste is the very next weekend, so pace yourselves, people! It’s yet another series of food events you don’t want to miss, right in L.A. From “Field to Fork” to “Sunday Brunch,” there are a ton of good eats that await! Get your tickets while you can, and prime your tastebuds for some serious fun ahead.