Kobasic’s Candies

Posted on November 8, 2010 – 1:03 AM | by OldManFoster
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By Sarah Singleton Photos by Scott Duncan

Hidden away on a tree-lined stretch of Riverside Blvd lies a candy store that turns out some of the most amazing chocolates I’ve ever had.  How had I not heard of this place until recently?

Upon entering, I wonder if I’m in the right place.  It’s quite cluttered, one whole wall is lined with toys and gift items and looks more like a storage room than a candy shop. Then, my eyes focus and I notice a big white refrigerator case filled with chocolate goodies and a table piled high with other candies.  A head of white hair pops up and inquires, “Would you like a sample of what I’m working on right now?”  Yes, this is the place.  It’s a tucked-away chocolate treasure trove that Jim Kobasic has created.

Kobasic, who refuses to give his age but says he’s “getting old”, comes from a family of candy makers and chocolatiers.  His grandfather opened Sayklly’s Candies in Michigan in 1906, where Jim would wash pots in his youth.  That business is still around today, run by Jim’s brother and other family members, and was once featured on the Food Network’s Unwrapped program.  With Kobasic’s, Jim is continuing the family tradition in Sacramento; his wife Marilyn mans the counter (and gives away samples) and daughters Nancy and Kathy comprise the fourth generation of Kobasic’s candymakers.

Though the shop first opened as a grocery called Jim’s Market in 1978, Kobasic couldn’t stay away from candy making for long.  Chocolate is in his blood.  Soon enough, he was making wholesale candies for Price Club and later, Costco.  He finally decided to open the shop to the public in 2003 and stop selling wholesale.  He does not currently sell his candies at any other retail outlets.

What’s so special about these candies?  For one, they are all made by hand in small batches with the finest ingredients. They don’t have a long shelf life because there’s no artificial anything added.  There’s no real need to worry about spoilage—they are so addictive that they’ll all be eaten before you know it.

Belying his traditional roots, Jim is pushing the boundaries of standard truffle flavors—or “kruffles”, as they’re known at Kobasic’s.  Some recent samples I tried were Limoncello and Balsamic Vinegar. I know what you’re thinking – vinegar?  Trust me, the balsamic flavor comes through the creamy dark chocolate at the end as a fruity sweetness – not like salad dressing.  There is also the requisite spicy chocolate, made with cayenne pepper, and some anti-oxidant varieties— acai berry and pomegranate kruffle.  They’re practically good for you!

Most avante-garde of all, Kobasic’s offers a seafoam-flavored chocolate, which is a top seller. Outside it looks kind of like a lump of coal coated in dark chocolate.  Inside, it’s the pale brown of sea foam and tastes like honey. It’s a light and airy, caramel-y and crunchy texture fest! I’ll be going back again and again for this unique treat.

The more traditional candies, such as the plain dark chocolate truffle—with or without trendy sea salt—are also out of this world.  They are creamy, chocolaty, rich and thankfully not too big-perfect one-biters.

Kobasic’s also offers nut brittles, caramels, chocolate and caramel covered pretzels, English toffee and salt water taffy.  Don’t forget to try the peanut butter krisp, a peanut butter kruffle with a crunchy and creamy mixture inside.

And, excuse me, bride? Kobasic’s also makes wedding and party favors in whatever shapes and flavors your little heart desires.  I’d much rather receive a Kobasic’s candy favor than a packet of those gross Jordan almonds.  Give me some good chocolate! (Hint: I’ll be much more likely to buy you an expensive gift.)

5324 Riverside Blvd, (916) 448-3555, www.kobasicscandies.com

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  1. 6 Responses to “Kobasic’s Candies”

  2. avatar

    By Mary Worthington on Nov 9, 2010 | Reply

    Thanks for this post! I will be getting some soon. I love candy making!

  3. avatar

    By Melanie on Nov 9, 2010 | Reply

    I am going here for holiday chocolates. I have always not loved See’s but can’t afford to buy a pound of Ginger Elizabeth. Which reminds me, I haven’t had Ginger Elizabeth in like six months. It’s time for chocolate.

  4. avatar

    By Bella Q on Nov 10, 2010 | Reply

    Uh-oh. I better pull out my fat pants.

  5. avatar

    By JasonG. on Nov 14, 2010 | Reply

    My partner and I have been living in Sacramento for almost 2 years and as the chocolate gods would have it we moved fairly close to Kobasic’s.
    We kept driving by the store and never stopped in until one day we did and what a pleasant fun surprise, especially for my girlfriend who has a friendly relationshp with good quality chocolates… Need I say more!

    The folks running the store are friendly, helpful and their chocolate candies are excellent.
    We appreciate the staff volunteering to give out free samples every so often which is helpful in picking out the many fine flavors to buy; no we would not otherwise ask for a free sample.

    The chocolates are the highpoint for us and I think you can easily give their ice cream a pass, though I did sample a few taster spoons of various flavors just to confirm what my eyes told me, which was, no thanks!
    I am pretty sure they do not make the ice cream. It certainly isn’t a gourmet product for it is full of artifical colors with a high overrun; you go to Kobasic’s for the chocolates and not for the ice cream anyway.

    Do stop by and give them a try… I think you’ll like what you buy… It is also an excellent place for buying good tasting gifts…

  6. avatar

    By Thomas M. Kelly on Dec 18, 2010 | Reply

    I have known and loved the Kobasic family and their chocolates for the past ten+ years. They produce the finest hand made chocolates I have ever tasted. I just stopped by to wish them a happy season and to pick up a pound for Christmas celebration.
    Thanks Marilyn and Jim.
    Tom and Ellie
    Mr. and Mrs Thistle Dew

  7. avatar

    By Jaycee on Oct 13, 2011 | Reply

    I love this lovely candystores chocolate!!! i go their on my free time (rare) but hope to stop in soon and buy looks of candy for the hoildays! they have the best candy for hioldays!! plus there ice cream is the bomb!! you gotta try this candystore! YOU WILL LOVE IT!!

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