In early March on our way to Orlando Florida to see an NBA game, we detoured around to Savannah, GA for an overnight stop. Since we had very little time, we spent most of the day at the Savannah River riverfront, watching the boats, enjoying the nice warm weather and browsing in all the little shops. It was an impromptu journey, so going to Paula Deen’s Lady & Sons restaurant was out of the question, as were the quaint carriage rides through the various squares. However, my son insisted that we look up the Savannah Candy Kitchen over on the riverfront. He had fond memories of grazing through this candy store while on a class trip to Savannah two years ago. I honestly thought it would be a candy store, full of sugary, hard candies, the type that you see in many tourist destinations around the country. We located the shop, just about where he thought it would be and reluctantly, I agreed to go in and look around. What a surprise!
The Savannah Candy Kitchen is an old fashioned candy shop that makes much of its delectable candies right on premise. Display case after display case featured interesting candies, with a window where you could watch the signature pecan pralines being made and snack on warm samples.
Yes, around the perimeter, there were the requisite hard candies that you can find most anywhere, but the focus of the shop was the wonderful homemade pecan pralines. Now, as you have probably experienced, in many shops, pecan pralines can be an overly sweet candy with a somewhat “grainy” texture. I could never understand why Southerners thought these were so great. Well, after tasting (and of course buying) some of the pecan pralines from the Savannah Candy store, I can understand why Southerners love their pecan praline candy! Warm, or not so warm, these beauties are light, smooth and creamy with just the right amount of sweetness and of course, chock full of Georgia pecans. They are delicious and utterly addictive. Not a hint of the “grainy” sugar taste that I had experienced with all the other pralines I had sampled elsewhere.
Another favorite are called “Gophers” and resemble what are also called “Turtles” in most parts of the country. Again, they were chock full of pecans and creamy caramel and topped with milk chocolate. They, too, were fresh and delicious. However, for my money the pecan pralines are the star of the store. Luckily, the Savannah Candy store has an online store where you can order the pecan pralines and many of their other candies and have them delivered to your doorstep or to a fellow praline lover as a gift.
Although our trip to Savannah was short and certainly warrants another trip back to really explore the city fully, I left there with a new found respect for the Southern pecan praline and a “to go” box of them tucked in my suitcase.