PROVIDED YOU’RE IN THE Upper Midwest, a Twin Bing is likely the last made-by-hand chocolate bar you can buy at a convenience-store counter. As such, no two look alike — which you’ll notice, since each package holds a pair, two hashy little hillocks of chocolate and chopped peanuts cloaking a creamy magenta center. The coating is almost more nuts than chocolate, and the nougat-fondant middle, nestled slightly askew in its brown haystack, is cherry-flavored, a tart and creamy contrast to the zesty chocolate crunch.
Where to Find
➀ PALMER’S OLDE TYME CANDY SHOPPE, in Sioux City, an outlet of Twin Bing originator Palmer Candy, run by the founder’s great-great- grandson. The company maintains a Twin Bing Finder on Google Maps.
➁ GET-N-GO, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, across the interstate from where Fernson Brewing Company brews a seasonal Twin Bing Stout.
➂ HY-VEE, at the Sioux City Southern Hills Mall, where a manager built a sculpture of more than 15,000 Bings in 2001.
➃ Ubiquitious CASEY’S convenience stores, originator of another great Iowa gas-station delicacy: breakfast pizza
Truly, no brand-name bar tastes anything like a Twin Bing.
These curious artifacts of the confectioner’s art are hand-shaped and-dipped in Sioux City, Iowa, by the same family company that introduced them in 1923. Back then, they were just Bings — the candy loaves rolled solo until 1969 — and came in maple, vanilla, pineapple, and cherry varieties. These days, limited-edition flavors come and go (think s’mores or peanut butter), but of the OGs, only cherry endures. For generations of Iowans, the homespun mound of a Twin Bing evokes nostalgia and a sense of place, the romance of fertile plains and windswept prairies.
(And yeah, maybe a cow chip?)