ABOUT US-Candies by Vletas
Old Fashioned Soda Counter
Hand-Dipped Chocolates
Soda Fountain
The Original Soda and Candy Counter on Pine
Palace of Sweets on Walnut

Tradition…

In 1912, two brothers, Nick and George Vletas emigrated from Greece to the United States, moved to Abilene Texas and established a candy business. Through two world wars , the depression and the roller coaster ride known as the oil boom, the Vletas remained strong. All the while, their secrets of fine candy making were handed down from generation to generation.

Through the years, the reputation of Vletas candies has reached far past the boundaries of Abilene, even finding national recognition. Many important events have been graced by Vletas confections.

Tradition…

In 1912, two brothers, Nick and George Vletas emigrated from Greece to the United States, moved to Abilene Texas and established a candy business. Through two world wars , the depression and the roller coaster ride known as the oil boom, the Vletas remained strong. All the while, their secrets of fine candy making were handed down from generation to generation.

Through the years, the reputation of Vletas’ candies has reached far past the boundaries of Abilene, even finding national recognition. Many important events have been graced by Vletas’ confections.

Today “Candies by Vletas” is located in the Historic District
of downtown Abilene at the R.E.A. Baggage Depot

1201 North First Street Abilene, Texas 79601

Special blends of milk, dark and white chocolates are used in making chocolate-dipped nuts, crèmes and in-season strawberries, grapes, apricots and cranberries. A wide variety of fudge, truffles and chocolate-covered Oreos complete a chocolate-lover’s dream.

Other candy selections include peanut patties, peanut and pecan brittles, pralines, divinity and taffy. For those who are on restrictive diets, we have a large selection of sugar-free candies.

Gift baskets and tins are available for Christmas, Easter, and Valentine’s Day or for any special occasion. We ship, and request Christmas orders by the 15th of December.

pam

Some say chocolate is sinful. Pamala McCombs (formerly Goble) calls it one life’s sweetest blessing.

In the early 1970s, her marriage failed. She picked up her pieces and moved from Hamlin to Abilene for a fresh start, ultimately finding new love and career in oil business. She was working for Abilene office of Xerxes Corp., an oilfield tank company, when she remarried and gave birth to two daughters. Doctors had said she would be unable to have children. McCombs had been general manager of Xerxes’ local office for several years when the oil market went bust. Within a few years, her career had dissolved, and she found herself cleaning homes with her sister. That’s where McCombs was in life when she met George and Martha Vletas.

Pam became familiar with the couple during visits to their candy store to buy chocolate-covered nuts. Impressed by McCombs, the Vletas offered her a job working the front counter in 1990.

At the time the store, founded in 1912, was on South 14th Street. “I knew it would be fun and way better than cleaning houses,” McCombs said She would often sneak back into the kitchen and watch how the Vletas made candy.”In the beginning, he’d shoo me out,” she recalled. “But he got to where he would grin and let me stay and watch.”

Pam’s life was going well until her husband was stricken with cancer a few years later. She sometimes missed several months of work at a time to travel with her husband for cancer treatments. Never once did she miss a paycheck from the Vletas. “They were like another set of parents,” McCombs said, eyes filling with tears. “The whole time, the Vletas were right there with me.”

Ulimately, Pam McCombs (then Goble) was left a widow. “When my husband died, my main concern was: How was I going to make a living?” She said. There was no question that the Vletas’ mind about that. Her job was waiting for her when she emerged from the darkness of her husband’s death. George and Martha Vletas said Pam is”like our own daughter”.

Perhaps it’s no surprise, then that McCombs inherited the business with financial assistance in the form of business loans from the Small Business Administration, First Financial Bank of Abilene and the Vletas.

Candies by Vletas moved to its current location on North 1st Street in 1999, about the time the Vletas were preparing for retirement. Their four daughters had not expressed interest in owning the business, but McCombs had. The Vletas had offers from several buyers, but each wanted to change the business more than the couple could stand. Pam wanted to keep the Vletas’ tradition. Within months, the business was hers.

“The most gratifying thing through all of this was when Mr. Vletas came in after I bought the store,” McCombs said. He saw she had rearranged some things and said ” This store looks so good. I am so proud of you.” Then he grinned and asked, ” Why didn’t you do this stuff when you worked for me?”

McCombs’ hopes of owning the store were not just her own. “It’s a dream I always had,” George Vletas said. “It’s in very good hands.” Pam says owning Candies by Vletas has provided a way for her to earn a living for herself and her two daughters. “It’s such a blessing,” she said. “I thank God every morning and numerous times during the day and in the evening before I go to bed.”

In 2002 Pamala won the The Entrepreneurship Award-Honoring exemplary entrepreneurs with disabilities
“Judges remarked about Pam’s passion, accommodating style, and good corporate citizenship.”
Nominator: Jamie Clayton, Abilene, Texas.

Always conscious of quality, all candies made here contain no preservatives and are hand-dipped with techniques handed down from generation to generation.