Monday, December 7, 2020

Swim with the Fishes - Tropical Mini Swedish Fish

 Swedish Fish Mini Tropical - Dollar Tree

No cool story or anything behind this buy. I just like Swedish Fish. I grew up eating classic red, and so far I have had nothing but good things to say about their new and innovative products. I've tried their candy canes, Trident chewing gum, Rita's water ice flavor, and more recently their Heads and Tails. I purposefully avoided known-duds, like the Swedish Fish Oreos, and overall I have been happy with the quality of their new releases.  

So when I spotted this at Dollar Tree, I figured, why not?

Inside we have four different colors/flavors, and my only pet peeve so far is that two of them are super generic.  

Piña Colada
(clear/white): I really thought I was going to like this one, because I grew up drinking the frozen piña coladas they used to sell at K-Mart, so I am no stranger to sugary fake flavoring, but this was a pretty big let down for me. I can taste pineapple and coconut, but it's neither the authentic flavoring version, or the general artificial versions. Something about this one tastes off to me. It's more-so the pine apple aspect. It's hard to place, but it almost tastes canned, or slightly metallic in terms of pineapple, but there is a slight creamy coconut flavoring there as well. I can tell what it was going for, but I am not a fan. 

Tropical Island (orange): Come on, "Tropical Island?" What kind of flavor is that? It's orange, so I am guessing something mango-based. As I chewed away I thought I could taste a hint of classic Swedish Fish red, mixed with hints of pineapple, mango, and maybe maraschino cherry? It's very "Hawaiian Punch," but not the classic red version. More like one of it's colorful cousin flavors. Not bad, and the pineapple notes here aren't as offensive as the ones in the previous flavor.  

Beachy Punch
(pink): Another generic punch flavor. I feel like that is a bit of a cop out. Why not go for something like kiwi banana or something? Anyway, the pink fish seem to have a guava-like flavor profile. Sweet, generic, and kind of hard to place. It has a piña colada-like finish, but it's somehow creamier and better than the actual piña colada fish. 

Passion Fruit (purple): This one is very sweet and mild, at first it was more texture than it was flavor, but after a few seconds the tanginess starts to shine through. It's been a long time since I ate actual passionfruit, so I can't speak to it's authenticity, but it was very distinct from the other flavors and a welcome change of pace.  

It feels weird saying this, since classic Swedish Fish are all literally the same flavor, but this was was too one-note for me. It lacks variety. Even though we have four different colors/flavors in this box, the first three all have hints of pineapple. Even though they have their differences for sure, and are not the same exact flavor, they're close enough that my palette gets bored. I just don't find myself reaching for these.

Who is the target audience for this product? A Swedish Fish loyalist who is also obsessed with generic fruit punch flavors? If you like tropical candies, there are plenty of other options on the market that do their job well, and while these are definitely not a bad candy at all, and I LOVE classic Swedish Fish, this just isn't something I, as a candy consumer, want. It feels more like an attempt to ride a trend than a true improvement or added addition to an already great candy. 

Fans of these would also like: Swedish Fish Candy Canes, Swedish Fish Heads or Tails, Swedish Fish Trident Layers Gum, or Hawaiian Punch Dum-Dums
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