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Monday, December 22, 2008

Grand Opening: Candy Darling

Posted By on Mon, Dec 22, 2008 at 8:00 AM


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Notes and Photos by Tamara Palmer

Saturday was the grand opening of Candy Darling (798 Sutter), a confectioner that's been longer than 15 minutes in the planning. Okay, so that was a bad Andy Warhol reference to describe this clever one--Candy Darling is the name of a transsexual beloved by Warhol who appeared in two of Warhol's art films.

This sign has been up at the corner of Sutter and Jones for what seems like at least a year or more, but its location seemed to suggest that Candy Darling would be a chic clothing shop.

Instead, it's a chic shop of sweets without the obnoxious chocolate boutique prices that abound around town. At only $10 a pound, Candy Darling's truffles, caramels, dipped fruits and brittle (all made on the premises) are really a steal.

I arrived right at the end of the day to meet proprietors Carla and Maria Stacho, who were clearly as excited and happy about a strong opening day and a welcome reception from the neighborhood as they were weary from the work. There were many empty plates in their refrigerated case, a sign of a job well done. While Candy Darling is a new shop, the Stacho family were in the candy-making business for 30 years and are have returned to the industry in a small and special way.

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It was genuinely hard to pick out a favorite amongst their candies; everything tastes so fresh and rich. Buttery almond brittle puts the beloved Almond Roca to shame, so maybe that was the best. But a real surprise was just how plump and juicy and sweet the dark chocolate dipped apricots are, living up to a potential I never knew existed because so many other people have ruined this simple treat. The Stachos also sell hard and gummy candies by the scoop, and have some festive lollipops.

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With a great name, quality product and insanely good prices, Candy Darling should fare well along San Francisco's sweet beat.
 
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Tamara Palmer

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