Sweets Review: Tilley’s Emerald Toffees / Oatfield Emerald Chocolate Caramels

THE last bag of Tilley’s brand traditional sweets I tried was Jargonelle Pears. They were a nice, but unexciting sweet experience. Something I’m expecting to be repeated here, with a bag of Tilley’s Emerald Toffees.

Tilley's Emerald Toffees / Oatfield Chocolate Caramels front of bag

Everything worth saying about the outside was said before, when I looked at their Jargonelle Pears. That means I can skip the boring part and get straight to telling you what these Emerald Toffees taste like. Or does it?

Something is amiss on the back.

Tilley's Emerald Toffees / Oatfield Chocolate Caramels back of bag

The back is where they list the ingredients for every single one of their sweets. Except, that is, for Emerald Toffees. I’ve been up and down the alphabetical list and they are simply not there.

Does it bother me? Not even slightly. You don’t eat sweets because you’re worried about antioxidents, sucrose and sodium bicarbonate. You eat them because you want your taste buds to have a party.

If, however, you are the sort of person who does worry about such things, then you’ll want to look at the bottom right-hand corner of the bag. That’s because the full Northants address of Tilley’s Sweets Limited is printed there. As is a telephone number, fax number and email address (info@tilleyssweets.com). You can even visit the website, www.tilleyssweets.com, where you discover that Tilley’s is part of Zed Candy. Are there any independent sweet makers left in the country? Comments at the end of the post please.

In the bag, there are about twenty of these little things.CLOSE UP

Tilley's Emerald Toffees / Oatfield Chocolate Caramels open, wrapper and unwrapped

I admit it. I didn’t expect to find chocolate covered anything in the wrapper. Looking closer at each wrapper does reveal some answers. Oddly, they have Oatfield branding. Which could explain why the ingredients weren’t listed on the bag. And, although the word “Emerald” is on there, they’re also called “Chocolate Caramels”.

Actually eating them reveals yet more questions and answers. What they are, are small rectangular pieces of something caramely and toffee-ish, covered with chocolate. There’s even something almost nutty or nougat-like about the taste. The whole thing is chewy enough to give you a minute or two of chocolaty, chewy, sweetness.

What do I like about them? A lot. I like the tastes of chocolate plus all the other confectionary tastes that I’m not talented enough to identify. I like how much chewy mileage you can get out of each one. And I liked the surprise of finding something completely unexpected in the wrapper.

What don’t I like? I don’t like not knowing that they are. Are they Oatfield Emerald Chocolate Caramels and not Tilley’s Emerald Toffees? And if I had to nitpick, I would say that they’re not exciting enough. Nothing is going to fizz loudly or turn your tongue blue.

What are they all about? That’s harder to pinpoint than you’d think. We might have a rogue batch here. Have these sweets landed in the wrong bags by mistake during packing? If you know the answer, do please leave a comment at the end of the post. Whatever the case, these Emerald thing-a-ma-bobs are delicious traditional sweets. They might not have any novelty value, but they are darned nice confectionary.

Have you tried these, whatever their true identity is? Have you got any insight or answers to the profound questions raised in this piece of serious journalism? If so, then do please leave your opinions, corrections, requests, recommendations and places to buy, here in the comments.


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17 Responses to “Sweets Review: Tilley’s Emerald Toffees / Oatfield Emerald Chocolate Caramels”

  1. e Says:

    made in letterkenny

  2. Ivan Says:

    Emerald chocolate caramels are popular in Ireland.


    Apparently they’re made in County donegal

  3. Ivan Says:

    Glucose Syrup, Sugar, Skimmed Sweetened Condensed Milk, Hydrogenated Palm Kernel Oil, Chocolate Crumb, Cocoa Butter, Cocoa Mass, Desiccated Coconut, Butter, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Emulsifiers – Ammonium Phosphatides, Glyceryl Monostearate. Chocolate Contains – Cocoa Solids (35%) Minimum.


  4. Ivan Says:

    Letterkenny is in Co Donegal

  5. Eileen Says:

    Hi –
    Oatfield Sweets are produced on Letterkenny Co. Donegal – they are like Ivan says really popular in Ireland. I think due to the fact that we Irish grew up on them we always kind of knew what they were about. You will no doubt have picked up on the hint of cocnut running through the sweet. Its a great eat in my opinion, really good for a car journey or to eat watching a film.

    The Irish Butter Toffee that Oatfield make are really good as well. You can buy them online too – all in their original packaging http://www.zedcandy.com

    Hywel – what dont you try some more of our Irish sweets let us know what you think?

  6. Jane Says:

    Hi, I have tried these sweets before and now stopped when I found out Zed Candy, the International sweet producer makes its products in China. The quality is bad and a number of recall products have happened already. Just google “zed candy recall”. At least 10 web sites come up with comments of “foreign material” found in their products. I wrote to the headoffice in Kilcock and still wait for an answer. It really makes you thinks about what ingredients they put in the bags, now sourced from China. Long live Cadburys !

  7. Eileen Says:

    Hi Jane,
    Oatfield is still based in Letterkenny, in Donegal and manufactures there – I just called them to check +353749122011, they were on Nationwide on RTE a few weeks ago – it showed the factory and the production – very interesting.


  8. Anonymous Says:

    Oatfield Emerald chocolate Caramels taste very good

  9. Anonymous Says:

    Oatfield Emerald Chocolate Caramels taste very goog

  10. Anonymous Says:

    Oatfield Emerald Chocolate Caramels taste very good.

  11. Anonymous Says:

    Oatfield Emerald Chocolate Caramels taste very good.They are yumi-yumi.

  12. Anonymous Says:

    i love emeralds but i bought a star shape tin for xmas and it was rotten i found at least 3 sweets half eaten and put back in the rapper i wouldnt buy them agine after that

  13. Mr. G Says:

    These iconic Irish sweets may be in danger now: Oatfield sweets has just announced it is to close. Can anybody rescue this great product?

  14. Anonymous Says:

    Oatfield and Tilley’s were both bought over by Zed Candy. Zed then closed the Letterkenny factory and subsumed Oatfield in Tilley’s, Kettering. 15 lost their jobs in Letterkenny. At the moment you can still buy the original Letterkenny produced (Oatfield) Emeralds (delicious) in Ireland. Have never seen Tilley’s produced Emeralds in shops and you certainly can’t buy them where I live in Scotland – although you can buy the Oatfield ones in some shops in Glasgow.

  15. Kate Foley Says:

    Bought bag of Emerald Toffees last week. So disappointed. Taste nothing like originals. Bland taste and original size, almost halved in size. Wont be buying again, if they remain the same.
    Kate Foley.

  16. Anonymous Says:

    I’m So disappointed with the Oatfield Emerald I bought in Dublin airport this week. The taste is nothing like the original flavour, what have they done to them? My sister and I and now my children always enjoyed the special taste, it always reminds me of Ireland and the fun times we experienced as youngsters. Just the sight of the Emerald green wrapper made us smile as we knew we were in for a treat. Please go back to how they used to be, until then I’m going to have to avoid them, how very disappointing.

  17. mohmmed yasin Says:

    Emerald chocolates are famous in india, gujarat.

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