Is there any childhood event a grown adult looks back on more fondly than Halloween? The autumn air and synthetic costumes. Pillowcases and plastic pumpkins filled to the brim with candies of all sorts. The pleading negotiations with parents on how much of said candy can be eaten. Those—much to the chagrin of many a dentist, surely—were the days. And while adulthood requires one to reign in their consumption of candy, a little sugary treat every now and again never hurt anybody. Herewith, your guide to the best candy stores in New York City to state your sweet tooth, just in time for Halloween.
Located around the corner from SIXTY LES, Economy Candy has been a neighborhood staple since it opened in 1937. The merchandise is stocked with a more-is-more ethos that, while capable of inducing slight claustrophobia, allows them to stock their store with practically every candy from every era. This is probably one of the only places on the planet you can find your favorite 1980s gummies alongside the caramels your grandma loved back in the 1950s.
108 Rivington St, New York, NY 10002
Dylan’s Candy Bar
Dylan’s Candy Bar was a new breed when it opened back in 2001. Founder Dylan Lauren sold her sweets with a side of art, fashion, and pop culture, creating a lifestyle brand before the phrase “lifestyle brand” was really a thing. Still going strong all these years later, Dylan’s Candy Bar continues to tout itself as “a museum of candy,” and is curated as such. From nostalgic classics to one-of-a-kinds, this is where you come when you want something special.
33 Union Square W, New York, NY 10003
Turns out Swedish candy is much more than just fish. Socketbit in Greenwich Village feels a little bit like walking into Willy Wonka’s white room. The framework is—characteristic of the Swedish aesthetic—clean and streamlined. While the room doesn’t have the sort of charming chaos that other candy shops embrace, it does allow for the candy itself to pop like gemstones in their cases.
89 Christopher St, New York, NY 10014
The Sweet Shop
Located on the Upper East Side, The Sweet Shop is everything you want from a candy store. Nothing more, nothing less. Sweets of all sorts line the shelves of this charmingly-sized store, and you can even order ice cream and coffee in the back.
404 E 73rd St, New York, NY 10021
Welcome to NYC’s temple to chocolate. Myzel’s looks like an apothecary, though the medicine they’re doling out is of the cocoa-based sort. The owners, who follow the tradition of European chocolatiers before them, craft things like chocolate nut bars, chocolate cookies, and truffles. They’re also liquorice aficionados, and carry over 100 varieties of the stuff.
140 W 55th St # 1, New York, NY 10019
Ray’s Candy Store
Recently promoted by the likes of Kendall Jenner and Kim Kardashian, Ray’s Candy Store opened in 1974 and is still operated by its original owner, Ray Alvarez. The shop isn’t exactly a candy store, as its name implies, but is a go-to for things like fried Oreos, egg creams, shakes, and soft serve. And while none of that might travel well on a night like Halloween, it’s definitely worth swinging by.
113 Avenue A, New York, NY 10009
Photo courtesy of Jeff Frenette