Danna J. Dykstra-Coy aka Joy was a cop reporter and a probation officer before she retired to devote herself to volunteer work and making Joycups. Lucky us. She uses only the best ingredients in her wickedly original peanut butter cups covered in Guittard dark or milk chocolate. The filling is made from creamy organic peanut butter mixed with freshly ground organic peanuts from a grinder at a local health food store in Morro Bay, CA.
I sampled four of Joy’s creations, each one decorated with lovely stenciled designs:
Blueberries and organic lemons blended in organic peanut butter
Olallieberries/raspberries and merlot-infused sea salt blended in PB
Traditional PB with espresso sea salt
Raw honey and vanilla bean sea salt blended with organic PB
If I had to pick my favorite, it would be the raw honey and vanilla bean sea salt. You might think, in comparison to the other varieties it would be banal, but it was subtle and refined, with an incredible balance of sweet, salt, chocolate, vanilla, and honey. Frankly, all the flavors were equally appealing. Their add-ins are not overpowering, but provide an extra flavor dimension you can’t find anywhere else. Even the ratio of filling to chocolate was just right.
Each peanut butter cup is handmade using ingredients that are organic, fair trade, locally grown, or purchased for highlighting the essence of California’s Central Coast, like olallieberries, blueberries and other fruits made without preservatives, additives or gluten from coastal farms’ vines.
The packaging is simple, attractive, and protects the contents. A cello window (mine was a pumpkin cut-out) showcases the Joycups, while raffia ribbon ties two adorable little tags, one of which says, “A balanced diet is chocolate in each hand,” and the other is a tiny thank you.
There are a number of designs to choose from on Joy’s website (see link). Each cup is topped with beautifully crafted custom artwork for holidays, seasons, birthdays, weddings, graduations, baby celebrations, and special events. They also offer custom private logos for gift baskets, wedding favors, events, wineries, and company promotions or incentives.
Since shipping costs are often prohibitive, I thought I’d mention their amazingly low $5 fee.