I'm contemplating doing a candy buffet. Cheesy, I know, but I'm entertaining the option.
I know Candy Warehouse on 3rd downtown (candywarehouse.com) has an incredible selection, but something tells me they're not the cheapest game in town.
Of course, the best thing with candy is to lie in wait until V-day or Easter of Halloween. But in terms of general every day purchases, is there somewhere great to buy bulk:
-chocolate covered malt balls
-colorful candy sticks (like candy canes, but sticks of different colors)
-good chocolate squares (not Hershey's! At least Ghiardelli if not better)
Any American classic candy. Mmm...candy...I don't even like candy and thinking about all these colors is making me giddy
I don't think it is cheesy at all. I make wedding cakes and I think the candy buffets I have seen have all been really cool. I like it when they work with a color scheme and have interesting jars.
If you want to go really crazy most rental companies rent cotton candy machines for about $30. per day!
re: Got Cake
What a fun job you have! It must be a lot of hard work, but you get to look at beautiful things all the time.
Have you ever asked a bride how much it costs to do a buffet right?
Update: I aked the hotel about it today and they were so nice! I have to provide the candy and containers, but they will provide a table, linens, stands underneath the provide a few taller sections, and do all the setup so my family doesn't have to oversee anything.
As others have suggested and you're trying, Garvey has a huge selection. If you have the time, they can probably get what you need if they don't have it in stock.
For pretty chocolates, try Madelaine's. I know Garvey carries them. They're always pretty and tasty. (They have some pretty color versions of malt balls this year.)
Also, check Koppers.
Gorgeous, tasty and unique. They even offer their candies in a colorwheel! (Just a fun site to play on.) You might be able to order direct if you're going in quantity. Last time I talked to them they were ramping up to offer direct ordering, so they might just be waiting for finishing touches on some website. I've bought them in NYC at Fairhaven.
You didn't say how many people you're trying to serve for your budget.
Other places to keep an eye on if you don't need to get everything at once:
- Surfas in Culver City (they carry good high end chocolate in bulk including Vahlrona reception sticks and pearls
) - Trader Joe's
- Ralphs or other grocery stores. Some of the gigantor versions have bulk candy aisles. (The one in Glendale on Glendale Blvd. @ California has it). The prices there are at least half of the mall and the selection is pretty good.
- Cost Plus World Market - they have a decent selection of candy but also carry some cute and hard to find items. Make sure it's fresh though.
I've also heard that the there's a chocolates place up in Valencia that has a factory outlet and factory store:
Always worth a look!
I thought about Costco. I'll probably do this:
-a few more unusual items from a bulk candy store, becaues that's the only place you can buy 10 pounds of something in a color of my choice just to kind of match the room (a few large glass jars of just blue, or just green, or just pink, etc.)
-some chocolate squares
-a balance of candy and chocolates that we like but don't come in special colors, in bowls and jars that aren't see through.
I think that'll give me a nice balance of saving money because I can buy non-color specific candy at after Easter and after Halloween sales (I'm planning for January 2008), and depending on what I end up with I can go to Garvey in November and round out the color scheme.
Thanks, all! I just called Garvey and the lady was incredibly helpful in terms of suggesting substitute candies (M&Ms are expensive, mint balls are not, etc.) and telling me how much I need (1lb a guest for all out candy craziness, as little as 1/2 to keep things under control).
They are a cash and carry warehouse open to the public. You can go look at everything, some display boxes are open, but some you can only see in the catalog and there is no opening of candy to sample (darn).
I agree that Garvey is the way to go. I work part-time at a candy store and that is where we get all of our good bulk shipments from. Especially if you are near the actual store, that would be ideal. Good luck and I recently attended a reception with a candy buffet and it was a huge hit!