Jumbo malt balls, Licorice Pipes, Bull’s Eyes, and a huge bin of salt water taffy. Even Willy Wonka would be jealous of this joint.
Anna and Joshua Sachar are just a couple of kids at heart, living out their dream of owning a candy store. When the pair moved to Asheville a little more than a year ago, they began planning Laughing Mask Candies, a by-the-pound shop similar to those they frequented in California. “As an adult, at one point I wasn’t a big candy fan,” Joshua recalls. “But when we went in that first store, it just blew my mind.”
Hoping to spark that excitement in folks here, the Sachars stocked tin buckets and wooden barrels with a plethora of sweets. Nik L Nips, Big League Chew, Pop Rocks, and Fruit Stripe Gum are favorites from the ’80s and ’90s. Oh Henry! chocolate bars, Red Hots, and an extensive selection of Jelly Belly beans have customers reliving childhood memories. “One woman told us her grandmother worked at a licorice factory and would come home with a warm pack of fresh-off-the-line licorice,” Joshua says.
Complete with clowns and a candy holding carousel, the décor ties the store’s nostalgic theme together. Even though the downtown shop has only been open since June, Anna and Joshua are making plans to expand by providing more organic selections and treats by local candy makers. This month, they’ve added gummy brains, skulls, life-size hands and feet, as well as ever so appetizing unicorn poop and zombie boogers. What a wickedly sweet way to celebrate Halloween.
Laughing Mask Candies
84 N. Lexington Ave., Asheville