My first SNOG
A Saturday without sugar is like a Sunday without a roast: fine, but you can’t help feeling you’ve missed out on a day where it’s ok to overindulge so much that you can’t concentrate on anything/sit up straight.
With this in mind, I decided that it was time to ferret out some of London’s more unusual sugary treats. Armed with a boyfriend who shares my passion for putting food in mouth, and a hangover that had my blood sugar levels all out of whack and demanding an ill-advised short term rush, I headed to Covent Garden. I’d heard tell of a magical sugar emporium you see, selling all kinds of obscene treats that were probably not usually available in this country for very good reason.
I was certainly not disappointed with Cyber Candy’s array of weird and wonderful confectionery from around the globe. Lucky Charm cereal, coconut M&Ms, Jelly Belly pic and mix, Oreo Pop tarts, cookie dough bites and something ingeniously called Goo Goo Clusters…there was really everything even the most sugar-fevered imagination could have dreamt up. You do have to pay a price for exotic confectionery though. A packet of delicious strawberry and peanut butter M&Ms will set you back over a £1 and even a humble Freddo (peppermint, crunchie, strawberry and dream milky white flavours would you believe), costs 56p.
I particularly enjoyed the décor of the shop, or rather lack of it. If I hadn’t been with someone who, bless him, has been so indoctrinated with my sugar-lust that he can’t help but make a mental note everytime he he sees a sweet shop, I might have walked straight past it. Both outside and in, the shop looks just like a normal newsagents, only less glamorous.
This lends the whole place a pleasing air of covert sugar dealing. When packed with Saturday shoppers, frenziedly grabbing at sweets, it seemed like the shop might be some sort of black market repository for foreign contraband. I was almost expecting the harassed shop assistants to suddenly shout “everything must go!”, prompting us all to loot it, leaving only a non-descript, poky shop with white-washed walls and cardboard shelves.
After sampling a slightly underwhelming Oreo and macademia nut bar from Japan, we discovered the antithesis to this approach to interior décor right next door. On first walking into frozen yoghurt cafe SNOG I thought there’d been some sort of mistake. Glancing at the glossy fluorescent pink walls and pulsating light bulbs I thought we’d walked into a sex shop, or at the very least one that sold the kind of mysterious, funky gadgets that could be used for similar purposes.
There was also a bit of a sour, plasticy smell in the air. Nothing about the bright lights and minimalist white furniture really said ‘tasty food’ to me. But you should never judge sugar by its cover and so we dutifully joined a line of people also intrigued to find out if a dessert which claims to be low fat, naturally sweetened with agave nectar and even actively good for you due to its pro-biotic cultures, could actually be that tasty.
When ordering your SNOG you choose from a range of flavours for the yoghurt and decide what size you can stomach. Available today was natural, blueberry or spiced apple- we went for blueberry. Then you choose from a range of toppings including healthy bits like fruit, granola, nuts or superfoods, or naughty ones like cookie chunks, white chocolate stars and hot sauces. This is where, if you’re anything like me, the health-kick ends. Needless to say I went for brownies and mini Oreos.
And the verdict? Actually really very tasty. The yoghurt’s pleasingly tangy but still definitely sweet enough to satisfy. It was a little pricey at £4.95 for a medium sized tub with three toppings but, when you’re just spent a couple of quid on a biscuit, you can’t really get too indignant.
And after all, where pud’s concerned, novelty is everything. The black jelly babies and meatball bubblegum nextdoor could certainly attest to that.