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721 Asbury Avenue

Ocean City, NJ 08226

609.399.1465

 
   

 

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The Rauhauser's Family is celebrating it's "46th YEAR OF SWEET SUCCESS"

Home of Distinctive Chocolates

The Press, Atlantic City, August 16, 1978

By Adelaide Patten

Press Food Editor

 New Jersey blueberries – those luscious globes of goodness that lend themselves to eating out of hand, to being baked into all sorts of good things or made into jellies, jams, preserves, ice cream or combined with other berries and fruits.

You’ve probably enjoyed them in many or all of the above ways, but have you savored the mouthwatering Blueberry Cluster.

And just what is a Blueberry Cluster? Ask the residents and hundreds of visitors to Ocean City and vicinity.  They know. They also know they are made at Rauhauser’s Own Make Candies Shop on Asbury Avenue in Ocean City and are Available there as well as in Rauhauser’s Brigantine shop.

Blueberry Clusters are simply a cluster of four blueberries coated with either dark or milk chocolate and they are delicious! They were a hit at the recent Food Communicators’ Tour sponsored by the New Jersey Department of Agriculture and the fruit, vegetable, dairy, poultry and egg producers of the state.

Curvin  Rauhauser told us how he happened to get into making this particular candy. About 8 or 10 years ago, Cheri the daughter of Phil Sheridan, executive secretary of the North American Blueberry Council, was working in Rauhauser’s Ocean City shop.

One day Sheridan came in and asked Rauhauser if he thought he might be able to cover blueberries with chocolate.  Rauhauser said, why not? And a new candy variety was born.

Rauhauser said the Blueberry Clusters are very popular and customers wait for the shop to post the sign “Blueberry Clusters are Back”

The shop process about 250 pounds of blueberries a year, resulting in about 500 pounds of blueberry clusters.  To make the candies, Rauhauser said the blueberries are picked over, washed and then dried.  They are they held overnight in a dry, cool room to be certain they hold no vestige of surface moisture. (The chocolate would not cling to a moist surface and moisture would also hasten the berry’s breaking down.)

Then, in a climate-controlled room, the berries are coated (“dipped”) with chocolate and placed on racks where the chocolate is allowed to harden.

Rauhauser himself doesn’t do any of the candy coating in the shop, but he “verbally taught” his wife, Mary Alice, how it should be done.

“She‘s a natural,” Rauhauser said. “Some people take up to two years to learn dipping, but Mary Alice took only a few months to master the art.”

Mrs. Rauhauser is the principal “candy dipper” at the shop which makes about 200 kinds of chocolate candies and more than 300 types of all kinds year round, including holiday specialties.

The business is a family-operated one.  Daughter Nancy Blomdahl manages both store and her husband Donald is also involved in the business.

Rauhauser said he started making candy as a hobby when he lived in Glenside, Pa. He has been making candy since 1940.  He never went to school to learn candy making but learned the art during the years he worked for the Stutt’s Candy Shop in Jenkintown and in Marquetland’s in Philadelphia.  He has had his own business about 32 years.

Rauhauser opened his shop in Ocean City 14 years ago, three doors away from the present location. He does not make salt water taffy but gets it from a world-renowned manufacturer in the resort area.  The majority of the candy sold in the shop is made on the premises but the shop does carry different types of candies and novelty items from about 10-12 suppliers and jobbers.

The shop does make its own fudge-12 to 15 varieties- and ails candy anywhere, Rauhauser said.

Wholesale chocolate prices, according to Rauhauser, are still extremely high but have come down about 15 to 10 per cent.  Dark Chocolate averages about $1.40 a pound as opposed to a 70 cent tag before the price began skyrocketing.  Milk chocolate is still double the 60 cents a pound price it sold for prior to the price rise of several years ago.  Rauhauser’s purchases chocolate by the hundredweight.

Rauhauser said he was pleased with the success of the Blueberry Clusters and will make them as long as the season allows.  Next year, they will again be a feature.

Ocean City Sentinel, Thursday, February 11, 1999

No Regrets:

Younger generation happy with decision to be candy-makers

Stephanie Loder

Ocean City Sentinel

February 11, 1999

Ocean City- The sugar in the candy Rodney Blomdahl cooks is in his heart It is also on his shoes and hands.

Rodney Blomdahl  30, is a former construction worker turner third generation candy maker in the longtime Rauhauser family candy business.

He has no regrets.

“Yeh, my friends on the construction sites laugh,” Rodney sais. “But they’re just jealous because they can’t lick their fingers at the end of the day.”

 His parents Nancy and Donald Blomdahl, weren’t always candy makers either.

Nancy Blomdahl said she wanted to go to college and study to become a music teacher.

“I remember my parents saying ‘oh, why don’t you just work in the store for one year and then go to college’,” she said.

“So I did, and here I am,” Nancy Blomdahl added.

“I have no regrets”

Same for husband Donald, a Navy Veteran.  He used to be a car mechanic.  He even sold cars for Bennett Chevrolet in Egg Harbor Township.

But Donald – like his wife and son – heeded the call for help when Curvin Rauhauser became ill six years ago.

“I always liked working with my hands and dealing with people. “ said Donald Blomdalh. “It was a chance to help out and I did.”

Son Rodney said his construction work lasted for five years, and he was “between jobs”  when he took over working in the candy kitchen.

I had done a little bit of cooking and I guess my need for a job kind of pulled me into this family business,” he said.

“They needed the help, so I just kind of jumped in,” he said

That was six years ago.

Now instead of a toll apron he wears a cooking apron in the kitchen.

He creates tiny colorful flowers out of confectioner’s sugar to decorate Easter Eggs rather than nailing boards together to build a house.

He enjoys his work in the kitchen as much as he did the construction site.

“I can tell you, this is a real sweet job,” he smiled

 

Nancy Blomdahl has retired from the family business, Rauhauser's Own Make Candy on Asbury Avenue, Ocean City. She is holding Irish potatoes.
Sweet, sweet retirement for owner of Rauhauser's Own Make Candy
Nancy Blomdahl has been with the family business for 45 years
Published in the February 2, 2011 issue


 

Ocean City — Though the candy-coated exterior may be deceiving, a chocolate covered blueberry is one of the healthiest foods anyone can eat, according to Nancy Blomdahl, owner of Rauhauser’s Candies on Asbury Ave.

Blomdahl jokingly touted the candy’s virtues as she described one of the store’s top-selling treats. Blueberries and dark chocolate are packed with antioxidants, she reasoned, and Jersey blueberries are the sweetest type of blueberry.

The blueberries are Blomdahl’s favorite candy, but as of Feb. 1, the long-time candy proprietor will be spending less time near the treats. On Tuesday, she hung up her apron after 45 years to begin her retirement. Blomdahl is handing the business over to her son, Rodney Blomdahl.

Blomdahl’s son, Rodney, has worked at Rauhauser’s for 21 years, so customers shouldn’t expect too many changes to their treats.


Photo: Kristen Kelleher
Nancy Blomdahl with her son, Rodney, and husband, Donald.
“(I hope) to continue the same traditions we’ve had for 45 years,” said Rodney Blomdahl. “I love this job, I love making other people happy,” he said.

 

“He knows once it’s in your blood, you have to work here,” joked Donald Blomdahl, Nancy’s husband. “You need to keep up the candy intake.”

Nancy can relate.

She came to Ocean City the year after she graduated high school, intending to help her parents in their candy shop, Rauhauser’s, for one year before she started college. Blomdahl has worked at Rauhauser’s ever since.

As the heiress to the Ocean City staple, Blomdahl has made 10-pound chocolate Easter eggs, nonpareils, fudge, caramel-chocolate covered pretzels and more, including a few non-conventional orders. She recalled one customer who requested a 20-pound, handmade and decorated Easter egg to impress a girlfriend.

It was no easy task, considering almost all of Rauhuaser’s candy and fillings are made on the premises. In her words, it was literally “from the back to the front counter.”

“With some of the bigger chains, by Christmas they’ll have their Easter candy all finished already,” she said.

“You’ll taste the difference (at Rauhauser’s),” said Rodney Blomdahl. “It’s fresh made on the premises and sold here.”

The distinctive tastes keeps customers coming back, Nancy Blomdahl explained, and described one woman who came in recently to buy Valentine’s candy for each of her grown children.

“It’s not a holiday without Rauhauser’s,” the woman explained.

On retirement, Blomdahl said that she felt ready, and plans to spend a lot of time relaxing, a luxury Blomdahl didn’t usually get at the store. Still, she said retirement would be an adjustment.

“I will miss being in here. I’ve been in it since the day I was born,” said Blomdahl. “I can’t wait for Christmas. I’m going to make cookies and send cards. That’s fallen through the last few years.”