West Dundee’s second sweetshop, Candy Quest, celebrates its grand opening Saturday

West Dundee’s second sweetshop, Candy Quest, celebrates its grand opening Saturday

How sweet it is to be in West Dundee.

When Candy Quest holds its grand opening Saturday, the town of about 8,000 residents will have not one but two candy shops.

“(My wife) Michelle and I have been talking about opening a store of our own for more than 10 years,” Candy Quest owner Bill Platt said.

There’s room for both their shop at 738 S. 8th St. in Century Plaza off Route 31 and Around the Corner Candy on downtown Main Street, he says, because both are filling different niches.

While the established store specializes in nostalgic candy, Candy Quest will focus more on sweet treats from around the world and those that are trendy and/or trending on TikTok.

Michelle Platt said their stock will feature items from the United Kingdom, Sweden, Italy and Japan, the latter of includes such favorites as Pocky Sticks (chocolate coated biscuit sticks) and Hi-Chew (gummy-like fruit chews).

Candy Quest, set to open Saturday in West Dundee, specializes in items you can’t buy elsewhere, like products made in Europe and Japan or things that are trending or trendy. (Mike Danahey/The Courier-News)

“Mexican candy is hot right now too,” Bill Platt said.

Some Mexican candy tends to be spicy, which is why they’re stocking other items that tap into that flavor spectrum, such as spicy pickles and seasoned sunflower seeds, he said.

Soft drinks, cake pops, cookies and goodies from J & G Pastries in Woodstock also will be available.

Bill Platt called Candy Quest a hybrid because it addition to selling sweets, the rear portion of the store has been set up as a “Candy Lounge.” There, customers can use video games for free or play Pokemon, Magic: The Gathering and other card games.

In addition to selling unique and nostalgic candy and other sweet and spicy treats, Candy Quest in West Dundee — owned by Bill Platt and his wife, Michelle — will also have a “candy lounge” where patrons can play video or card games, the owners say. (Mike Danahey/The Courier-News)

In keeping with the gaming theme, the decor incorporates pop culture collectibles the Platts have acquired over the years. The store’s mascot, Peppermint Pet, created by a family friend, is a sword-wielding cartoon candy character emblazoned on the front door.

The Platts’ daughter Kaitlyn, 19, and son Will, 9, will be helping at the store this summer and Platt’s sister, Karen, will be “selling various tumblers and mugs that she makes in her spare time.”

Once the summer ends and the kids go back to school, Bill Platt will running things by himself while Michelle, a psychology professor at Indiana State University in Terre Haute, will commutes the 220 miles back and forth.

The family moved to West Dundee more than 10 years ago when Michelle was working on an advanced degree at DePaul University in Chicago.

“We’re very involved in the community,” she said.

While some of its fare is nostalgic, most of the items being sold at Candy Quest in West Dundee comes from other countries or is currently trendy or trending, the owners say. (Mike Danahey/The Courier-News)

That includes Michelle serving on the parent-teacher committee at Dundee Highlands Elementary School and the family’s elaborate home decorations for Halloween, which they’ve dubbed Fright on Fay Avenue. The couple said their lawn display draws hundreds of trick-or-treaters every Oct. 31.

Being known in the village is something they hope will help bring business success.

The store’s soft opening is Friday but they plan a grand-opening celebration from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday with appearances by Princess Peach and Mario, face painting and a deejay.

“We’re very excited to open,” Bill said.

Mike Danahey is a freelance reporter for The Courier-News.