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Charity Ferreira

BERKELEY

Sweet Dreams. A fixture in South Berkeley for more than 30 years, this is still a prime spot for chocolates, jewel-toned jelly beans and gummies, and a fun selection of wackier sweets―think alien pops filled with green goo, or exploding lava candy. 2901 College Ave.; 510/549-1211.

PALO ALTO

Kiki’s Candy Bar. A pretty pink wonderland of taffy, gumballs, and old-fashioned swirled candy sticks. A “candy cocktail bar” in the back serves sweet mock-cocktails with garnishes like Jujubes and Sugar Babies. 540 Emerson St.; 650/321-9919.

SACRAMENTO

The Sacramento Sweets Company. Since 1964, this family-owned shop in historic Old Sacramento has been turning out vats of old-fashioned candy kettle delights like nut brittles, buttery toffee, and caramel corn. 1035 Front St.; 916/446-0590.

SAN FRANCISCO

Z. Cioccolato. Fill a pail with your choice of 300 different kinds of candy sold by the pound, including caramels, licorice, and atomic fireballs. Don’t miss the homemade Tiger Butter Fudge―creamy chocolate and vanilla fudge with a layer of peanut butter. 474 Columbus Ave.; 415/395-9116.

WINDSOR

Powell’s Sweet Shoppe. In the back, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory plays all day, but the film has nothing on this store. The owner is also a collector―check out a display of antique Candy Land game boards. 720 McClelland Dr.; 707/836-0808.

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