#66 Cyber Candy
At the other end of the shopping rainbow from Fortnum and Mason sits Cyber Candy, grinning its little head off. There are actually two London branches of Cyber Candy now – one in the Boxpark in Shoreditch (which we’ll talk about soon) and the original London branch in Covent Garden.
Stepping into this busy little shop is like stepping into an alternative universe in which everything is 20% more interesting, 50% more Super Mario-themed and 300% more likely to cause Type 2 Diabetes. Cyber Candy specialises in rare, cute and sometimes disturbing sweeties from around the globe, with particular emphasis on the US, Australia and of course Japan. Japan shits out some genuinely wrong candy, you know. Probably the most famous is the vast and unsettling variety of Kit Kats that Japan makes. You can try everything from vegetable flavoured ones to green tea here. Most of them just taste dull and mildly wrong, like robot food, but come on – it’s not like anyone was expecting the universe to improve on the Kit Kat anyway. (Although the Aussie-only Cookies ‘n’ Cream Kit Kat Chunky comes close.)
There’s something endearingly 90s and bonkers about the clashing colours and brands that line the shelves. It’s the Manic Pixie Dream Girl of food shops. Boggle at the retarted level of Pop Tart variety (ice cream favour’s one of the best) and debate on whether to actually buy or just photograph the lollies with real insects in. And don’t miss the Twinkies by the till – those little yellow US cakes filled with synthetic cream which popular mythology claims could survive a thermonuclear winter/alien holocaust/The Rapture. “The Cockroach of Cakes” the twinkie wrapper proudly doesn’t proclaim. The only problem Cyber Candy has, really, is that non-UK sweets all taste like shit. Ah well. The wrappers are fun!