Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Toffee Talk: Walker Creek vs. The Greatest of All Time

Posted By on Tue, Sep 27, 2011 at 8:32 AM

The other day, a fellow walked into the Scene offices wielding a shrink-wrapped 8-ounce slab of Walker Creek Toffee and introduced himself as Bruce Mott, one of the people who make the stuff by hand out in Alexandria, Tenn., for a few months a year. It didn't take him long to throw down the gauntlet — two of them, actually.

First, Mott said he was itching for a "toffee smack-down" pitting the Nashville area's top toffee-makers against each other to determine sweet, salty supremacy. Second — implying that he felt pretty good about Walker Creek's chances should such a buttery, crunchy battle royale materialize — he said, indicating the aforementioned 8-ounce slab with a subtle nod of his head, "I think it's the best in the world."

We don't hear the phrase "best in the world" thrown around too often — at least not in the confections department — but not wanting to let that kind of assertion go uneaten, I gathered up the Scene staff and asked them to taste-test Mott's claim. Here are some of the notes I was able to write down between breaking off more pieces for myself:

"It's delicious, but it tastes like peanut brittle with chocolate on it."

(This led to an extended discussion on the differences between peanut brittle and toffee, which was inconclusive at best.)

"It has that nice burned caramel aftertaste."

"It is really good."

"I love the texture, the way it collapses between your teeth."

"The chocolate is the best part."

"I don't feel like my teeth are breaking — I usually avoid toffee because of that."

"Very good, very buttery."

"I do love toffee, but I can't say I've had all the toffee in the world."

So ... I think the takeaway here is that we all thought Walker Creek Toffee was really good — exceptionally good, in fact — but none of us is enough of a toffee expert to substantiate or negate any best-in-the-world claims. As for a local-toffee smack-down, we'd probably need some more samples to make that happen. Anyone want to pick up that gauntlet?

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