- April 1, 2021: I the pleasure of visiting Sifers Valomilk Candy Company
in Merriam, Kansas. The Sifer family started making candy in Iola, Kansas
in 1903 and added a facility in Kansas City, Missouri about 13 years later.
In 1931, the accidentally production of runny marshmallow was experientially
dipped into chocolate cups and a delicious new candy, Valomilk Dips were
1970 Sifers Valomilk Candy Company merged with a larger candy company,
but in 1981 the Kansas City factory was shut down and Valomilks were discontinued.
1985, Russ Sifer acquired his great grandfather's original copper kettles
and other equipment and the family put the factory back together in Merriam.
They now produce only the one candy and do not have on sight or direct
sales. Due to strict quality assurance, the factory is not open to the
public, but I was permitted to photograph and record the fascinating process
of producing the candy for this web site. I was shown around by Russ' step
son, Dave Swiercinsky, fifth generation of the family to make candy.
is produced twice a week. Marshmallow is cooked by hand on Monday, candy
is made on Tuesday morning and packaged on Tuesday afternoon. This is repeated
on Wednesday and Thursday.
fascinating old equipment makes an interesting percussion sound as 10 candies
advance about every 2.3 seconds. Chocolate is poured the paper cups. Then
a puff of air the pushes the chocolate up to make the sides of the cup.
the runny mallow is added and then the candy is cooled for several minutes
on the production line. In the next room, the chocolate top is added and
a team of people pick up the trays of candy to gently swirl them and make
sure the the top is uniformly covered. The racks are set aside so the candy
will set up before packaging later in the day.
factory office doubles as a virtual museum, with many photos of the company
history, examples of packaging from over the years and old advertising.
takes a little effort to purchase Valomilk, but it can be found at Cracker
Barrel restaurants, Price Chopper & Hen House grocery stores, the nearby
Merriam Hardware and several online sources.
Sifers Valomilk Candy Co production line
- April 7, 2021:
I made a second visit to "Brown Sugar: Chicken & Donuts" in Kansas
City, Kansas. The 4 wings, fries & a soft drink for only $6.99 is a
bargain. The wings are a little small, but are so reasonably priced that
you can order a couple more and still stay under $10 including tax.
picture at the right shows two of the Nashville Hot wings and 4 of the
Brown Sugar Blazing Sauce. I liked both, but the Nashville Hot was my favorite.
The Blazing sauce reminds me of some sweet Thai sauces. The fries could
use a little more cooking, but were good dipped in the sauce.
all of the customers got carry out. There were two employees working. One
wore a mask and one did not.
lunch, I drove to The Legends Field, home of the recently renamed Kansas
City Monarchs Baseball Club. Other than a couple of signs with the new
name, it appears that little has been done to prepare for the May 18th
the KC Monarchs pop-up shop is now open at Legends Outlets (across the
street) with apparel and a display from the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum.
This will be open for just a few weeks, after which their will be apparel
available at the stadium. I assume they will have old time Monarchs and
Negro Leagues Baseball exhibits at the stadium.
apparel has major league prices, with adult T-shirts and hats starting
Negro Leagues Baseball exhibit
- April 16, 2021:
Preparing to add a review of The Rub BBQ in Olathe to our Kansas
City BBQ Restaurant Guide, I made a second recent visit here today.
They do not have tables marked for social distancing, but arriving after
the noon hour, there were few enough customers that I was able to have
a table away from other customers.
order at the food preparation counter, reading the menu above. Today I
had the Friday special of a half rack of pork ribs and side for $10.99,
which seems like a pretty good deal.
selected onion straws for the side. They were good, but a bit saltier than
I like. I like salty food, so it may be too much for some. I do like their
house cut fries even better.
ribs were a a generous serving and I took 3 home with me. They were tender,
with what I think is about the perfect amount of still clinging a little
to the bones, rather than falling off. They have quite a bit of flavor
from the rub, but I still enjoyed adding some of their hot sauce.
The Rub BBQ
Ribs & onion straws