Even healthy Coloradans have a sweet tooth (browse our candy store roundup). It’Sugar is the latest business to add its treats to the mix, with the chain’s first Colorado location opening in the Denver Pavilions last week. It’Sugar CEO Jeff Rubin says the store has been nearly three years in the making. “There are a lot of rules in life and society, and It’Sugar is a place where you can go to bend those rules a little bit,” he says. “If anybody can understand breaking rules, it’s Colorado. I think Colorado exhibits that humoristic side—that fun side that It’Sugar is all about.”
Rubin founded the chain in 2006, aiming to inject some attitude into the candy store scene. (Products range from boxes of candy cereal that only contain sweets to a five-pound gummy bear keg.) With more than 60 retail locations, Rubin has proven that it’s possible to embrace the irreverence and youthfulness of candy while marketing to adults. “I think children would love a 3,000-square-foot candy store no matter what, so we try to drive the humor toward the adult market,” Rubin says. “Adults love candy just as much as kids, if not more.”
Part of the draw are the nostalgic treats, such as Pop Rocks or Chuckles. But the adult-themed products attract an audience, too; stuffed teddy bears from the R-rated movie Ted and obscenely large wine glasses line the shelves across from tables of brightly colored bulk candy. Plus, the Denver store will be the first of the It’Sugar locations to carry Saturday Night Live-themed candy, such as Schweddy Balls peanut butter malt balls and Debbie Downer mints. Though the SNL line will eventually be in all of the stores, Rubin says his company still responds to local demand. For instance, candy in Colorado colors was available at the Denver Pavilions location on Friday to celebrate the Centennial State’s birthday.
“We’re a chain, but yet we’re very, very cool,” Rubin says. “People respect and like that.”
500 16th St., Suite 184-A, 303-534-0739, itsugar.com
Follow editorial assistant Mary Clare Fischer on Twitter at @mc_fischer.