Victorian Clear Toy and Cough Drop Workshop - Atlas Obscura
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Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Victorian Clear Toy and Cough Drop Workshop

Go behind-the-scenes at the oldest continuously operated confectionery in the United States for a hands-on workshop of a Pennsylvania-German tradition.

Join Atlas Obscura Society Philadelphia for a visit to  Shane's historic candy kitchen for a hands-on exploration of Victorian clear toy and hard candy. Clear Toy Candy, Barley Candy, or ”Dierich Orde Glass” is a Pennsylvania-German tradition that dates back to 1772, and involves molding sugar into a hard-candy sculptures. This candy was, and still is, a traditional holiday gift among local Pennsylvanians; one part play-thing, and one part edible treat. Throughout the evening, guests will make a variety of candy using 19th-century equipment, molds, techniques, and herbal flavors! Attendees will learn about candy and medicine’s intertwined past, crank a 19th century drop roller, and create their own clear toy candy sculptures—all in the kitchen of America's oldest confectionery.

Shane Confectionery is the oldest continuously operating confectionery in the United States, with candy made on site since 1863. The Shane family took over the business in 1911, installing elaborately carved woodwork, stained- glass and curved windows to showcase the chocolates and confections crafted in the kitchens above. In 2010, the business transitioned to the Berley Brothers, owners of the nearby Franklin Fountain, who embarked on a meticulous restoration of the building and business. Candies and bean-to-bar chocolate continue to be made on-site, with an emphasis on locally sourced ingredients, seasonal specialties, and old-fashioned quality.



The kitchen at Shane Confectionery is on the second floor and requires a walk up a narrow and steep staircase.


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Advance tickets only. All sales final. No refunds or exchanges.