Andes Mints

Andes Mints

One look at an Andes mint and it becomes clear that this elegant candy isn’t marketed towards children. Individually-wrapped in green foil, these luxurious little rectangles of minty chocolate are typically found in upscale restaurants and atop hotel pillows. They almost look too sophisticated to eat, but that hasn’t stopped many a curious kid from grabbing a few from the fancy candy dish when nobody was looking.

They originated from a small confection shop in Chicago called Andy’s Candies in the 1920s. At some point, owner Andrew Kanelos astutely recognized that that there was something awkward about giving a woman chocolates with another man’s name on the box, so he changed the company name to Andes. His company flourished as a result and, in 1950, they introduced the mint that would make them famous.

Look close at an Andes Creme De Menthe rectangle and you will notice three distinct layers. The two on the outside are creamy milk chocolate surrounding a thin white layer of mint, Stamped into each top layer is the elegant company logo. While this is the most common confection from Andes, other variations are also available, including Cherry Jubilee (with little bits of cherry mixed in), Toffee Crunch, and Mint Parfait (which is actually an inverted Andes mint with two layers of mint enveloping a thin layer of chocolate).

Although they are just fine on their own, Andes mints also provide a flavorful addition to baked goods such as brownies, cakes and cookies. As such, they are a popular ingredient in holiday treats which led the company to introduce a baking chip version of the candy. And if you are lucky, you just might come across a container of Andes mint ice cream, complete with little chunks of candy goodness.

In 1987, the Andes company was sold to Brach’s, who took over production until 2000, when they were again sold to Tootsie Roll Industries, who makes the confections today. The company also makes an exclusive version of the popular mint that is only available at Olive Garden restaurants.

Still, its those little green rectangles that are most fondly remembered from childhood. Eating one as a kid made you feel a little more refined, a little more sophisticated – a feeling you were never going to get from a package of Fun Dip. And, truth be told, they gave your parents the same feeling.

Did you feel special when you ate an Andes mint as a kid? We’d love to hear your childhood memories of these iconic candies in our comments section below.

2 Responses to “Andes Mints”

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  1. Love Andes mints…especially those from Olive Garden…those should be in stores too!

  2. Johnny C. says:

    I fondly remember eating these from “fine” restaurant establishments when I was a child. Good times.

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