November 20, 2013 in Chocolate! (and other less exalted food experiences), Reflections on Pop Culture

Inspired by Oprah’s List of Favorite Things and my recent trip to New York City, here are a couple of My Favorite Things—New York City style— just in time for your holiday shopping!

Favorite Nut-Free Treats for the Holidays:

Vermont Nut Free Chocolates Advent Calendar  (This isn’t technically New York, but I figured Vermont  was close enough!)

It is so difficult to find nut free treats that when I discover a new one, I practically jump for joy. Vermont Nut Free Chocolates, one of my go-to nut free chocolate sources, is now offering a nut free chocolate advent calendar! Behind every door from 1-24 lies a perfectly safe and delicious chocolate treat for your nut allergic child…or for you! Available in milk or dark chocolate.

Eleni’s in New York

Oprah had Eleni’s “Color Me” treats on her Favorite Things List this year because of how whimsical they are, and I have them on my list because they are a completely nut free bakery. I discovered Eleni’s on my visit to Chelsea Market in NYC. I was enamored of the beautifully decorated cookies (plus they had samples!), but when I turned the box over and saw the “Nut Free” on the label, I nearly swooned.

And they ship! I brought these ones home for my kids as a souvenir:

Favorite Candy Display: M&M World, Times Square

On the 2nd floor of M&M World, three walls (three walls!) are lined with colorful tubes housing every flavor and color of M&Ms you can imagine. It is a feast for your eyes as well as your mouth! All you have to do is get a bag from an employee and you are free to wander from tube to tube, filling your bag full of M&M treats. I went crazy, picking plain, peanut, almond, peanut butter, mint, and pretzel in both milk and dark chocolate, and I went with an Easter-ish pastel color scheme. After you pay, all you have to do is tuck your M&M bag in your purse and then you can sneak M&M’s anytime you want…while watching a movie, while strolling through MOMA, or while watching a Broadway musical or two!

You can even personalize your own M&Ms right there in the store or online. You’d be amazed at the number of different personalizations you can do, including your favorite NFL team.

If that’s not enough, they had an overwhelming selection of Apparel, Candy Dispensers, and stuffed M&M’s to suit anyone’s fancy. If you have kids, this may be the place for you to get all your Christmas shopping done. If not, there’s always Hershey’s Chocolate World. Anyone need a Hershey’s throw blanket?

Click here for Part 2 of My Favorites List from New York City!