Guilty Pleasures at the Shore

You know what they are. You know you want them. There’s pretty much nothing you can do to resist the avalanche of delicious comfort foods the Jersey shore serves up every year. Well, this summer is no different and those guilty pleasures taste just as good as ever.

Let’s start it off with a trip to Mack and Manco’s, a famous pizza shop that opened their first parlor at 918 Boardwalk in the summer of 1956 in Ocean City, NJ. Soon after, another was opened a block away. That was a long time ago, but good food has steady staying power, and the pizza here, most popular by the slice ($2.50), is delicious. They now offer delivery but this pizza is best enjoyed hot out of the oven and the high turnover ensures a fresh product.

All that hot pizza may have you hankering for something cold and creamy. In that case, the famous Kohr Bros. is a good next move. It’s not actually ice cream but frozen custard, a product that uses more eggs than traditional soft serve. No matter how you slice it, Kohr Bros. frozen custard translates into something that tastes pretty freaking good. Available in vanilla, chocolate, and peanut butter twist among other flavors, it’s an addictive alternative to Dairy Queen and has now spread to over 10 states.

Moving on to the definitive candy of the coast, salt water taffy. This chewy, stretchy Jersey Shore staple actually has no water at all, but it does have tons of corn syrup and James, Fralingers, and Shirvers do salt water taffy right. Shrivers ($7/lb.) on the Ocean City boardwalk has a mini factory in the back of the store that’s constantly pumping out fresh taffy all day long. James Candy in Wildwood features bite size taffy ($9 lb.) and also carries a ‘golden seal’ line ($15/lb.), which finds the candy coated in dark chocolate.

Keeping with the theme of candy, the Jersey Shore can even turn popcorn into something sweet. Johnson’s Popcorn is a shore delicacy and a popular one at that. So popular, in fact, that the company moves over 150,000 pounds of popcorn a year! Johnson’s pops the corn fresh and then hand churns it with caramel sauce ($6.95 sm/$10.00 lg). There is also a peanut/almond crunch topping available as well as a chocolate drizzle in the fall ($9.50 sm/$15.00 lg).

Last but not least, if your teeth just can’t handle the stickiness of salt water taffy or the crunchy consistency of caramel popcorn, there’s always good old-fashioned fudge. Fudge is available all across the shore, but some standout establishments include Fudge Kitchen located on the Ocean City boardwalk and Laura’s Fudge in Wildwood. Fudge Kitchen ($10/lb.) makes all their fudge onsite and even has employees situated behind the front glass window cooking it in kettles. Flavors include snickers, pistachio, peanut butter, and cookies ‘n cream. Even the traditional choices get some updates such as vanilla coconut and vanilla marshmallow.

Your mind may be saying no, but your stomach makes the final call when it comes to comfort food at the Jersey Shore. Check out some of these sweet treats when you head to the boards and don’t forget to make that dentist appointment after your vacation is over.

Fralingers Original Salt Water Taffy
1100 Boardwalk
Ocean City, NJ 08226
(609) 399-2202

James Original Salt Water Taffy
3400 Boardwalk
Wildwood, NJ 08260
(609) 729-3318

Shriver's Salt Water Taffy & Fudge
852 Boardwalk
Ocean City, NJ 08226
(609) 399-0100

Fudge Kitchen
800 Boardwalk
Ocean City, NJ 08226
(609) 398-7457

Laura's Fudge
Wildwood and Ocean Aves.
Wildwood, NJ 08260

Johnson’s Popcorn
1360 Boardwalk
Ocean City, NJ 08226
(609) 398-5404

Mack and Manco’s
920 Boardwalk
Ocean City, NJ 08226
(609) 399-2548

Kohr Brothers Frozen Custard
12th & Boardwalk
Ocean City, NJ 08226
(609) 399-1332

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