When I’m back from college, I expect to smell one of two things in my hometown air: manure or chocolate. That’s the way of Lancaster County, PA, with its plethora of farmland. But the chocolate smell comes primarily from one of our neighboring towns, Hershey. Having lived next to Hershey my entire life, visiting its amusement park or the legendary Chocolate World has become almost commonplace. So, when I heard about the brand new Reese’s Pieces flavors, only available at the self-proclaimed sweetest place on Earth, I knew I had to head over and try them out myself.

What are the new Reese’s Pieces flavors?

The new flavors are caramel and chocolate cookie, both allegedly stuffed inside a typical candy. Canada, as it turns out, has had additional Reese’s Pieces flavors for years. These two are just a taste of what Canada has to offer, with options like a pretzel or milk chocolate center (the second option sounding not too different from the traditional Reese’s Pieces…)

This release method also isn’t new for Hershey’s, as its Ice Cream Shoppe Chocolate Bars, initially released in 2021, have also been exclusive to the Chocolate World stores. These are now available to buy on its official website, so these Reese’s Pieces flavors are probably soon to follow.

What do the new flavors taste like?

However, based on my opinion, you may not care too much about their release. When I dragged my family to Chocolate World one evening, sneaking in mere hours before it closed, we were all a bit skeptical. My dad, notorious for his love of Reese’s Pieces and claiming them as the perfect candy, couldn’t understand why anyone would want them changed. “Why mess with perfection!?” he raged.

After locating the 12-ounce bags each flavor is exclusively sold in and waiting in a shockingly long line for 7:30 PM, my reluctant cameraman (and younger brother, David) and I sat down to try the candy. Admittedly, I went in with a very critical eye. These flavors ultimately make sense together, and it's Hershey’s! The candy is yummy, and I found myself snacking on it a little even while writing this article. But in the moment, (as you’ll see in my accompanying video), I found myself siding with my dad’s opinions. If you like Reese's, you’ll probably like these.

But particularly with the Chocolate Cookie flavor, it doesn’t feel very cohesive. With something like a milk chocolate or chocolate cookie center when your candy is already just chocolate and peanut butter, adding more chocolate feels lazy. With the caramel, I can at least appreciate some creativity, even if the new, spherical shape and complexity doesn’t feel in the spirit of the actual candy. While eating them, I couldn’t help but crave a regular ol’ piece of Reese’s Pieces.

Not all of Hershey’s recent swings have been misses. I also picked up the three newest Ice Cream Shoppe flavors — Cotton Candy, Chocolate Hazelnut, and Salted Caramel. While Salted Caramel was a bit too artificial for my tastes, the other two were delicious, and I definitely see the way in which they emulate ice cream in chocolate form. At the end of the day, though, when it comes to Reese’s Pieces, I think my family and I are united in our opinion. Why mess with perfection?