About two years ago, my friend and I went to Barcelona and Ibiza. It was a super memorable trip and it yielded some unforgettable candy too. In Spain, they are big fans of the fruit and cream licorice, especially strawberry and cream. I sampled strawberry and cream licorice ALL OVER Barcelona. They had so many different shapes and sizes of it along with sour and not sour (regular?) versions. Some licorice came in a long rope form like the stuff I found in Jerusalem, some were skinny and short like the ones I found in Italy, and all of them came in a sour or regular version. There was a lot of licorice sampling to be done...I was really happy in Spain. However, after careful consideration, I finally landed on the best combination: short, medium-thick, and regular.
Here's the winner:
Haribo Fresa-balla! Man, these people really know gummy candy. These licorice bites are soft and chewy right out of the bag with a nice strawberry flavor and vanilla cream center. The perfect ratio of strawberry to cream. I can safely say that during our 6 day trip in Spain I ate 6 bags of these things. And that was AFTER going through the initial process of elimination in Barcelona taste testing all of the other shapes/sizes. But, like most things in life, it took hard work and dedication to find the winning combination.
Sidebar: some dude we met on the beach one day noticed that I had a bag of these and launched into how terrible a company Haribo is and how there are like horse hooves or something in their gummy candies and blah, blah, blah. He went from being interesting to a real downer. It was like ok buddy, I noticed that you're wearing a speedo but I'm not going to point it out and make you feel bad about it. For the record, I buy and eat organic when I can, I don't smoke, don't drink much, have 1-2 cups of coffee a day, work out regularly and pretty much lead a healthy lifestyle. So if I want to follow the 80/20 rule and spend that 20% eating horse hooves and sugar then please, just let me do that. That's my rant on letting other people make you feel bad for how you choose to spend your 20%. Don't worry, just follow the 80/20 rule and you'll be fine.
Ok so unfortunately, I can only find this strawberry flavor on foreign websites. They sell them at Tesco in England for example which will be a process to order if you live in the states. Amazon sells a multi-flavor version of these so that might be the closest you can get to them in the U.S. I was able to get my hands on a few bags again because my friend went back to Ibiza and was kind of enough to offer to pick up more
A: Do you want me to get more of that candy you liked in Spain?
Me: Ooooo, yes, please.
A: Ok how many bags?
Me: Um, one
A: Are you sure?
Me: No, two. Plus a pica.
"Pica" is what we started calling the sour variety of these candies. Neither of us knew at the time what pica actually meant but inferred that it was sour. Plus it was fun to say.
In the end, we decided that the regular version is still the best but pica is a fun way to mix it up.
So that's my pick in Spain. If you go there, def pick up a bag of these but make sure you get the regular, medium-thick version unless you want to go ahead and sample all of the different shapes and sizes for yourself (which is actually pretty fun). These are sold in just about every corner store in Barcelona and Ibiza so they're really easy to find. In fact, if you're going, can you grab me a bag?