Halloween should be about sugar and spice and everything nice. Like all things in 2020, the holiday may not look exactly the same this year, but that’s all the more reason to treat the kids (or, if we’re being honest, yourself) with a trip to a special candy store. And with all due respect to Tootsie rolls and Snickers bars, Long Island sweet shops know all the tricks to make your treats even more indulgent.
From chocolate-covered pretzel pies in Babylon to a sweet reason to get your oil changed in New Hyde Park, these are the top spots to satisfy your candy cravings.
North Fork locals and regulars know Love Lane is a narrow road packed with mom-and-pop establishments, and this sweet shop is a noted favorite. Guests can find everything from Godiva to handmade chocolates along with home decor, gifts and toys. Adding to its charm: Love Lane Sweet Shoppe is family-owned, and guests can often chat with co-owners and sisters Chelsea Chalone and Ashley Rutkowski, as well as their mother and previous owner Jackie Wilsberg, as they pick out treats.
Though Kilwins is a chain — it has shops in Babylon Village, Huntington, Patchogue and Port Jefferson — it manages to maintain a small-town, Main Street USA feel. The stores smell like homemade ice cream each summer and warm, gooey caramel in the fall. The sea-salt caramels strike a perfect balance between sweet and salty. The silky texture of the cream assortments makes them taste like a chocolate-covered luxury.
People take the train in from New York City just to satisfy their chocolate cravings at this family-owned staple. Roe Roe’s is known for its creative novelty items like chocolate-covered popcorn, marshmallows and chocolate-dipped Oreos. The chocolate pretzel pie, which comes in flavors like M&Ms and Reese’s Pieces, is a bucket-list item for any sweet tooth.
From the outside, this shop looks like a Gingerbread house, and stepping inside is like walking into a Pinterest dream. There are brightly-colored lollipops, shelves full of every candy imaginable from chocolates to gummies and an array of specialty items like pretzels and barks. It’s also a baker’s delight — the shop sells different candy molds, cake pans and melting chocolates of every color.
Another North Fork favorite, this downtown Greenport spot sells vintage and modern candies by the pound. If you want to shop curbside, call ahead and they’ll help pick out treats in advance: The fudge is rich and a worthy substitute for the kind your grandma used to make, and there are enough flavors of jelly beans to make Easter bunny jealous. Guests also often leave with a treat for their homes — Sweet Indulgences has everything from picture frames to pillows and jewelry.
The 1950s meets Millennial at this gourmet candy shop. The Candied Anchor sells classic sweets like Mary Janes and bubblegum and items for a modern Montauk bash like colorful piñatas. All are welcome — there are plenty of options for those who need gluten-free, sugar-free and nut-free options.
This hidden gem brightens up an Island Park strip mall. Inside, there’s a wide selection of more than 130 types of candy, milkshakes, sodas and ice cream flavors. Because ice cream never goes out of season, the brownie sundae (one scoop of ice cream topped with whipped cream and cherry) is a year-round favorite. For an extra indulgence, consider the 19th-century milkshake, a proprietary twist on the classic drink.
This sweet stop doubles as an auto repair shop and manages to make getting a flat tire a treat. Started as a convenience store in 1982, Bobb Howard’s wants to take people back to a time before video games, battery-operated toys and the Internet, when one of life’s simplest pleasures was watching (or being) a kid in a candy store. There are bubble gum machines, jujubes and red licorice laces, as well as retro-games, hula hoops and lunchboxes. It’s a place to stop, stay and play awhile.