In honor of this special day, our Sweet Sharon Prudhomme explored several shops filled with tasty treats!
Halloween and the holidays are fast approaching, dredging up some real sweet memories. Sweet tasting memories of homemade creamy chocolates, gooey fudge and candy come to mind. Now we’re not talking about the commercial, store bought kind of treats. These memories are of the real deal, all natural and made in house by the candy maker.
Back in the day, young gentlemen would court a gal and offer candy and flowers to his date and often to his date’s mom as well. Neighborhood parties brought boxes of scrumptious chocolates for the hostess….and her kids. Vacationers thanked neighbors for caring for a pet, watering gardens or bringing in mail by presenting a box of salt water taffy upon return from the Jersey Shore.
Often overlooked by many are the Jersey Shore sweet spots featuring many of the childhood favorites and of course salt water taffy. Sweet delights come in a variety of textures and forms, some even liquid. These are but a few of the gems to find and share.
Spring Lake has “Third Avenue Chocolate Shoppe & Summertime Ice Cream”. Candy Maker/owner, Matt Magyar, creates his own mouthwatering confectionery delights in the shop. Matt can be seen making his sweets most days. His candy making began at the ripe age of 14 in ’72 at the Berkeley Sweet Shop on the boards in Seaside Heights. Seven years later Matt was doing a stint as candy maker in Cal. at Helen Grace Chocolates. 1985 brought his expertise back to NJ as owner/candy maker of Biscayne Candy on the boards in Seaside Park. Four years later Spring Lake lucked out with the opening of Third Avenue Chocolate Shoppe. Manasquan boasts a second Third Avenue Chocolate Shoppe which opened in 2005.
Matt’s participation in community charities & fundraisers over the years shows a caring, understanding business owner with a heart of gold. We found Matt donating time and delicacies at the 12th annual Scott Jansen “Taste of the Shore” held at Manasquan Elks Oct.23rd
“Like stepping back in time” can often be heard while visitors survey the confectionery delights. Classics such as Non Pareils (orange & wht. for Halloween), Choc-dipped Pretzels, Milk & Dark Choc Mints, Almond Butter Crunch, Choc Covered Caramel Marshmallow Aubree, Choc Pumpkin Pops & Choc Covered Strawberries are but a sampling of the wide assortment of smooth & creamy, crunchy, buttery, savory finds sure to bring a smile. Did I say savory? Why yes, Choc Covered Bacon also takes a place under the glass! Need a gift for the sweet tooth in your life? “Life is like a box of chocolates”! Shop while tasting – cards, stuffed animals & more await. Forget the chain stores with factory mass produced sweets. Locally made, containing all natural ingredients is the name of the game here.
Hours are extended in July & August till 9pm as a major plus for all! Matt’s also offers his famous 99 cent ice cream cones! Yes! .99 for a healthy sized summertime fix. About 6 flavors which are just winding down with cool weather setting in.
Third Avenue Chocolate Shoppe: 1118 3rd Ave, Spring Lake, NJ (732)449-7535 97 Main St., Manasquan, NJ (732)528-0006 Owner: Matt Magyar Hours: Mon – Sat 10am – 5:30pm Sun – 11am – 4pm *Close at 9pm July & Aug.
Brick, Seaside Heights & Lanoka Harbor have a sweet spots too! Van Holten’s Homemade Chocolates, Brick, Van Holten’s Sweet Shop, Seaside Hgts. and Van Holten’s Homemade Chocolates, Lanoka Harbor “don’t just sell candy, they sell memories”. Soon after entering, one’s mouth begins to juice up as the senses take in the sights and smells of the awesome array of over 60+ homemade confections and flavors. Founded in 1904, Van Holten’s is one of the oldest chocolate shops in the area. Here one will find unique favorites from around the world using the finest Cocoa Beans, jellies, nuts, fruits and creams to dance upon the tongue!
It’s Candy Apple time with the Van Holten recipe! Granny Smith apples are coated and offered plain or rolled in choice of sweet coconut or rainbow sprinkles. Nut Brittles made with either peanuts, cashews or pecans using all natural sugar, corn syrup and nuts make a great gift box idea. Other treats such as Almond Butter Crunch is made with only butter and sugar for the toffee, then coated with creamy milk chocolate and rolled in almonds. Thinking outside the box brings interesting concoctions. Into M&M’s? How about 22 different M&M colors? It’s a Jelly Bean lover’s heaven with an assortment of 70 different Jelly Bellies!
Did someone say Meat Dept.? Here at Van Holten’s you will find meat. Yes, meat, but not your typical choc. covered bacon. How about chocolate covered Beef Jerky, Slim Jims or……Pork Roll! Stumped as to what to bring to the next party? Your search is over- Pork Roll….hey, it’s New Jersey! Sweet and savory go together like a horse & carriage, soup & sandwich-don’t knock it till you try it. Be sure to visit Van Holten’s website for printable coupons! **when stopping by one of these fun shops, please tell them “Jersey Shore Scene” sent you!
802 Ocean Terrace, Seaside Heights, NJ (732)830-2220 1893 NJ-88, Brick, NJ (732)840-0888 344 Route 9 Lacey Mall, Lanoka Harbor, NJ (609)971-0871 Hours: Mon – Fri 10am – 8pm Sat – 9am – 10pm Sun – 9am – 8pm