Other than Chocolate….

The best candy
The best candy

…this is the best candy in the world.  Now, I really love my chocolate, but sometimes I just want something sweet that isn’t chocolate.  In the USA there are Starburst, but in Japan we have Hi Chew.  Hi Chew are much better than Starburst.  They are very soft and not nearly as sweet as Starburst.  The writing on the lower right side of the package says Ha-Chi-Yoo.  The writing in the upper left corner says Ra-ee-chi, that’s the flavor, Lychee.  If you are not familiar with the lychee fruit it is a small asian fruit with a red skin. 

When I was a child growing up in Salt Lake City my family frequented a restaurant on Broadway called the Ding Ho.  Chinese dining at it’s finest!  Well maybe not, but my parents liked it and knew the Chinese cook Von.  Our waiter would come to take our order and my dad would say, “Tell Von that Van and Carol are here.”  I always felt important when my dad said this.  I’m pretty sure that he did too and that’s why he did it.  Von would then decide what we were having for dinner.  I am pretty sure we got the same dishes that were on the menu.  They just tasted better knowing that Von had selected them just for us.  He always included tiny white cups filled with green jello that was just like rubber for dessert.  We loved it!

Anyway, back to lychees.  I was introduced to the lychee by Von and I can’t remember if I ate them at the Ding Ho or if he gave us a can for a gift.  I just remember thinking that they were the most disgusting fruit I had ever tasted.  For some reason I grew up thinking that they tasted like mothballs.

Every member of my immediate family and just about anyone who has ever tasted Hi Chew love them.  Rick and I carry nearly $100 worth back to the US every time we come.  Everyone requests them.  The cost about $1.00 a package and everyone has their favorite flavors.  The problem with having a favorite flavor is that they change the flavors all the time and in the winter months they are hard to find because their place on the shelf is taken up by cough drops.  (Which reminds me I better stock up before they disappear).   My niece loved the grapefruit ones I found last year.  Allyson really likes banana and apple.  Maddie’s favorite is strawberry and Ruth and Jame’s kids like any flavor because Ruth opens each package and dumps all the flavors into a big ziploc so they can’t request certain flavors.  There are many flavors that I have seen only once.  All flavors are wrapped in silver except the special ones and they are wrapped in gold.  The gold flavor used to be kiwi, but this week a new gold flavor appeared, LYCHEE.  So after getting past my childhood memories of mothball flavored lychee, I decided to buy a pack and they are really good, but then I actually have only found one flavor that I really don’t like and that is plum.  Fortunately, I’ve only seen them once.


  1. dee jones

    How funny about the Hi Chews. You know my family likes them as well. I asked Dan what kind it was our kids didn’t like, and it was the plum! It must be pretty bad if even the kids wouldn’t eat it!
    I will have to stock up for my kids and Christmas too. In the states you can sometimes get them at World Market according to Clinton, who was happy to have found them! Somehow they still like me to bring them. Don’t know if it is b/c it is obviously cheaper for them, or if they are fresher…

  2. Susan

    I so loved it when you mentioned the Ding Ho, it made me laugh. We did feel important didn’t we!

  3. lizzy

    I LOVE Hi-Chews! I didn’t have to read to know exactly what they are… the only flavors we can find are lemon, grape, and occasionally strawberry. I didn’t realize there were so many flavors, but it makes sense.

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