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||Alan Smith is probably reminiscing about 'Thruppenny', a foil-wrapped biscuit exactly as described from our old friends Burton's. The name came, unsurprisingly, from the price that it was sold at, and it was a staple product of many a school tuck-shop. The snag was that with a name like 'Thruppenny', it was very difficult to ever take a price increase without destroying one of the brand characteristics, ie its name. So it was discontinued. It re-emerged in the early 1980's with a new name 'Bingo!', but never caught on and was discontinued again. The name 'Bingo!' was re-used on an aerated chocolate countline that can still be found lurking on the lesser-shopped reaches of the chocolate biscuit fixture.|
Looking forward to seeing you on TV tomorrow!
|Nicey replies: Once again Biscuit Man comes up with the goods. And yes watch out for me on Richard and Judy tomorrow 5/6/2003.|
My wife and I both remember from our childhood's a fully chocolate covered wheatmeal digestive biscuit that came individually wrapped in blue and silver foil (red and silver for the plain chocolate version). I used to be able to buy one during break-time at primary school.
Does anyone else remember these, if so can you remember what they were called and who made them?
Most importantly of all, can you still buy them?
PS. We're not talking Viscounts here.
|Nicey replies: Yes that definitely stirs my memory, but not enough to remember what they were.
||Esteemed Mr Nicey:|
The message about charcoal biscuits roused a long-lost memory of my childhood in the 1940s (in England, which is south of Scotland). My Dad used to eat charcoal biscuits for the good of his digestion, declaring that they absorbed or otherwise nullified the effects of gas. You know the sort of gas I mean.
I remember trying them. Small, oval, chunky and black. Not a displeasant taste but not exactly addictive.
Don't know if we fed them to the dogs. My brother had three dogs, one after the other, and they all mysteriously disappeared. One of our chooks also mysteriously disappeared. I had developed a close bond with her, and nobody dare tell me that we ate her for Sunday dinner. Makes you wonder about those dogs.
I remain, dear Sir, you 'umble servant, etc.
|Nicey replies: They sound a lot like the things I use on our BBQ.|
Foxs Chocolate Viennese Review
|During the 1970's, my father had the contract for unblocking the drains at Jacob's Biscuits in Liverpool. He was regularly telephoned in the small hours and summoned to the factory as a matter of urgency. Next day, we children would awaken to the Christmas-like spectacle of boxes of Clubs at the bottom of our beds. These had apparently been presented to my father with the nightwatchman's compliments. The contents were always flawed and sometimes actually mutant, with defects ranging from crushing and treading injuries (footprints visible in the foil) to the classic complete omission of biscuit matter, frequently cited on these pages. For some reason this happened a great deal with the orange flavoured variety, and only very rarely with the mint. My favourite mistake was an unsurpassed clump of approximately twenty four amalgamated Fruit Clubs, lavishly coated in chocolate, but set in a formless heap. We had to hack bits off it with a rolling pin, although, as my Grandma pointed out, They Tasted The Same.|
I used to ask my father how such anarchy came to be visited on the production line but he always just shrugged and said it was nothing to with him, his department was the drains.
Incidentally, I was pleased to see that you have just reviewed the Fox's Viennese - this has recently become my biscuit of choice. I would recommend keeping them in the refrigerator, especially during warmer spells. This greatly improves the texture of the filling and the overall mouth-feel, and adds interest to the "bite".
|Nicey replies: Heidi,
Woo, fantastic tales of Clubs of old there. Biscuit factories must be thrilling places to work, even if it is to do with drains. The monster 24 fruit Club thing should have been cast in bronze as a monument of some sort. I think it would have made a splendid statue to put outside their front gate. Or it could have been given to visiting foreign dignitaries. Still good job you got in there first and mullered it with a rolling pin.
Glad you liked the Viennese review I enjoyed the 5 or ten minutes it took to completely review the pack.
Jacob's Orange Club Review
|I have a little bit of info for you regarding what happened to the club biscuit.|
For quite some time Jacobs were considering deleting it as it was far too costly to produce. They contacted the company I work for to buy special on-line weighing machines that could be used to control the amount of chocolate which the bars were enrobed in. Putting too much of something in a food product is called 'give away'. Every gramme of chocolate too much is increased cost of manufacture.
I would guess that this equipment didnt help them in cost reduction enought, so instead of deleting the bikky, they made it cheaper and poorer quality.
|Nicey replies: Upon hearing that news I feel I can relate to the emotions held by Charlton Heston at the end of Planet of Apes.|