108 Rivington Street between Ludlow and Essex Streets
800 352 4544, www.economycandy.com
Started in the midst of the post-Depression era when candy still came in barrels, Economy Candy is a rickety little Lower East Side spot owned by Jerry Cohen, a grizzly New York City native with an auctioneer's voice and an attitude to match. This vintage candy warehouse brims lower east side floor to ceiling (literally-a stepladder is required) with jawbreakers, licorice whips, chocolate-covered raisins, root beer barrels, Chiclets, Pixy Stix, kosher gourmet jellybeans, and other Willy Wonka-like delicacies. A favorite of Jerry Lewis, Red Buttons, and Tony Curtis, Economy Candy was described by Gourmet magazine as "the penny-candy store elevated to an art form."
Other favorites include rock-candy swizzle sticks (red, blue, amber, yellow, pink, and green), Jordan Almonds, Atomic Fireballs, candy necklaces, eighteen kinds of halvah, chocolate-covered pretzels (milk, dark, and white), and Pez in every imaginable size and form. In fact, the only candy you won't find here is Chunky. "It's my favorite," says Cohen. "I don't sell it because I'd eat it all day long." At least the man shows some restraint.
Dany Levy is the founder and editor in chief of Daily Candy, a daily e-mail newsletter dedicated to fashion, trends, and deals of the day.