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Click pic to view comments - Review of the Decade: Sweets, Biscuits and Cakes Review of the Decade: Sweets, Biscuits and Cakes
Posted: 22:00 Sun 03-Jan-2010.
Snackspot reports: I'd been hoping to restrict this to major launches rather than just "limited editions" - though not getting off to a good start, given Cadbury's decade will probably be best remembered for them getting rid of the Wispa in 2003, then claiming the public wanted it revived 4 years later. There isn't quite the same demand to bring back the Champagne Crunchie with which Cadbury ushered in the millennium, nor its Tango or Lemonade Crunchie offspring, though I think you might still be able to buy Crunchie Nuggets and 2006's Crunchie Blast ice cream.

Less dramatically, another of their brands survived August 2000's Anthea Turner Snowflake endorsement to give us 2003's Flake Dipped, 2004's Flake Praline and Flake Moments, plus 2006's Flake Dark - and Cadbury did manage to refine 2006's Dairy Milk Creme Egg Bar into the Creme Egg Twisted we enjoy today. In the "don't know if you can still get them/don't care" category, there are 2004's Cadbury Snaps Milk Chocolate Curves and, while I enjoyed many of the madder flavours of Trident gum, it's coincided with a decline for gum brands blamed on a "congested fixture and over-premiumisation".

... Just my personal impression, but there was a point in the mid-2000s when Nestle seemed happy to put out endless different flavours of Kit Kat, from Low Carb to White Lemon and Yoghurt, with only 2006's Peanut Butter Chunky (and perhaps 2008's Senses) showing any real longevity. Nonetheless, they did some good work extending other lines like Smarties, After Eight, Toffee Crisp, or even Quality Street and Rolos. But it wasn't all plain sailing - 2004's Double Chocolate disappeared without trace, and I'm not sure I even got to try 2005's tempting-sounding Pizazz.

Of course, Mars/Masterfoods' 2005 launch of Galaxy Promises didn't fare much better, while 2003's Bisc/Twix Top misfire made them refocus their lighter biscuit efforts on 2004's Mars Delight. They seem to have had more luck with 2007's Mars Planets and basically turning every brand they own into a drink (or several) - and it's conceivable that you might still be able to track down 2004's literally mouth-watering AquaDrops, though thankfully not jelly-foetus-containing Harry Potter Dragon Eggs from 2003, probably the weirdest UK launch of this - or any other - decade.

Obviously this is going on a bit now, so just some quick mentions for less prolific manufacturers: I remain sadly unconvinced that McVitie's are ever going to do anything interesting with either Penguins or Jaffa Cakes; well done to Bendicks for sticking with their unappealing-sounding mint brand of Mingles for more than 7 years; while my surprise tip for a product (like Lyle's Golden Syrup, pictured) whose expansion seems almost limitless is... Terry's Chocolate Orange - the campaign to bring back their 2002 Easter Egg and Spoon starts here.


Posted: 22:30 Sun 03-Jan-2010 by Zeddy # permalink comment
Comment: Good review Snackspot. I do like to Mingle myself though I refrained from asking Santa this year as once you tell people you like something, well...you know. Anyhoo, I still got a box which is awaiting consumption after I have finished the Mars Celebrations tub. I am fed up with all the side lining going on by the major players. When will we see something as innovative as a Secret again?
Posted: 23:21 Sun 03-Jan-2010 by "Choccieman" # permalink comment
Comment: Great review. I'm a big fan of Penguin big sticks, although I agree about Jaffa cakes (no-one really likes them that much anyway do they?). Only thing missing (IMHO) is the triumphant entry of Oreos to the UK market (I've been munching white chocolate covered ones all over the festive period). Here's hoping 2010 will bring us the double-stuff varieties :-P
Posted: 00:51 Mon 04-Jan-2010 by "Kim" # permalink comment
Comment: Oh my god I had forgotten about Nestlé Double Berry and it was one of the nicest things I have ever tasted. Aqua Drops were/are quite nice as well, they often pop up in petrol stations.
Posted: 11:33 Mon 04-Jan-2010 by Snackspot # permalink comment
Comment: hey cheers everyone, admittedly I did skimp a bit on the "biscuits and cakes" side of things, otherwise I'd have included Oreos and McVitie's 2007 promising but doomed Heat To Treat range! http://www.snackspot.org.uk/thread.php?story=0705031244cpi
Posted: 16:57 Mon 04-Jan-2010 by "charl" # permalink comment
Comment: wow - i had no idea we had been snackspotting for so long! my first one was 2001. gosh. thanks for all the hard work snackspot - i hope type II diabetes doesn't get us before the end of the next decade... :)
Posted: 17:13 Mon 04-Jan-2010 by "Nick T" # permalink comment
Comment: Nestlé Double Choc did a spin-off mini egg with a speckledy creme filling for its sole Easter season. Jolly nice it was too!
Posted: 22:39 Mon 04-Jan-2010 by "Choccieman" # permalink comment
Comment: I've never understood what Nestle did with Double choc and double berry. They were genuinely good products and Nestle were apparently surprised when their almost complete lack of marketing resulted in poor sales - ah well. Mebbe if they buy Cadbury they'll learn how to win us over...
Posted: 08:51 Tue 05-Jan-2010 by "Mawich" # permalink comment
Comment: I don't think McVities need to do anything at all with Jaffa Cakes - they're already perfect.

Choccieman, you question if anybody really likes them all that much. I can only say that you clearly haven't ever seen what happens when a packet makes its presence known to my gaming group. They vanish almost immediately, devoured with many cries of enjoyment and much karma gained by the person responsible for their arrival.

I think Cadbury's confused me the most these last few years, with their varied attempts at different varieties of Dairy Milk, some of which were great (the one with crispy rice in it, and also Dairy Milk Mint Crisp), and some of which were awful. I can't appreciate Creme Egg Twisted, but then I hate the goo inside a Creme Egg so it was doomed from the start really.

As for the return of Wispa, some of the public at least did want them back, and it's certainly done good for sales around my way - I often see one being eaten in my office.

And not just at my desk.

Posted: 17:12 Tue 05-Jan-2010 by Zeddy # permalink comment
Comment: Choccieman, be careful what you wish for....
Posted: 19:08 Tue 05-Jan-2010 by "Nick T" # permalink comment
Comment: Never mind Nestlé mate, the worst case scenario would be if Hershey bought Cadbury's but pah! well obviously THAT won't ever happen because Cadbury's is already made under licence by Hershey in America and Cadbury has a big display at the Hershey Store in Times Square, and what with Cadbury's UK boss actually being an American anyway and, er... pardon?
Posted: 19:41 Tue 05-Jan-2010 by Zeddy # permalink comment
Comment: I'll see your "worst case scenario" and raise it by "Nestle, the new name for Lindt."
Posted: 20:39 Tue 05-Jan-2010 by "Iain"
(apparently posting from ) # permalink comment
Comment: Secret was supposed to be the killer brand for Rowntree Mac as was , but the spoilage/breakage rate was huge.

The worst case scenario is "Nestlé, the new name for Sprüngli", Lindt is lovely and easily available but having to transit Zürich airport frequently has led me into the shadowy world of Truffes du Jour and the evil little Luxemburgli.

On the subject of Lindt, why can't they sell Weihnachtsschokolade here. I get nearly mugged by the my office from November onwards for bars of it for relatives.

Posted: 21:41 Tue 05-Jan-2010 by Zeddy # permalink comment
Comment: Iain, my bad. I must write out 100 times "I will learn my chocolate makers' names."
Posted: 13:16 Wed 06-Jan-2010 by "Nick T" # permalink comment
Comment: I don't even rate Cadbury's very much, but the thought of Hershey buying them gives me that same buttock-clenching sicky feeling of dread as the words: "And now, a new comedy series starring Lenny Henry".
Posted: 18:48 Sun 10-Jan-2010 by Snackspot # permalink comment
Comment: Thinking about it, maybe I should have included 2001's Kinder Bueno + 2004's Happy Hippos: http://www.snackspot.org.uk/thread.php?story=0403181928sbc

& "Mawich" - you make a good point regarding Jaffa Cakes (and Penguins for that matter), it's just it looks like McVitie's are keen to extend both brands as much as possible, perhaps to prevent one of the other big companies from muscling in on their territory with (say) a creamy-in-the-middle Kit Kat to take on the Penguin!

Posted: 20:05 Tue 19-Jan-2010 by Snackspot # permalink comment
Comment: Crikey, kraft buying cadbury eh? I predicted that we might be seeing more of Kraft/Terry's choc orange this year but this is ridiculous...
Posted: 20:44 Tue 19-Jan-2010 by Zeddy # permalink comment
Comment: Toblerone, Cadbury, Milka, Oreo, Cote d'Or, Lu, Marabou to name but a few. You are now never more than one chocolate bar away from a Kraft product. Still, there is always Hersheys (stop guffawing at the back!) or Nestle. DAMN!!!!!!!
Posted: 15:50 Wed 20-Jan-2010 by "Nick T" # permalink comment
Comment: Anybody who has visited Cadburyworld and actually read what these Quaker brothers did for society and the health of ordinary people in Birmingham cannot fail to be moved. Visions like Bournville simply couldn’t happen now. Today, the Cadburys would be locked up for being: 1) tubthumping nutters, b) social exclusionists, and iii) obvious perverts and probably racist to boot. What a sad indictment of today’s mores. After all, in how many other companies would the workers club together to fund and build a bandstand for their employers? Not Kraft, that’s for sure. Oh, and in case you read yesterday’s news of the takeover and wondered what that sound was, it’s George Cadbury spinning in his tomb like a lathe.
Posted: 06:10 Tue 26-Jan-2010 by "Nick S" # permalink comment
Comment: Also notable: the demise of the bagged black-liquorice Midget Gem as part of the northern advance of Maynard's gums into previously-solid Lion territory.
Posted: 15:50 Fri 29-Jan-2010 by "Alan" # permalink comment
Comment: It's a sad day to see Cadbury go to Kraft :(

Maynards should never have replaced the black-liqourice midget gems/sports mixures with blackcurrant, they just don't traste right! Why mess with a 100 yr odd old combo?

Posted: 18:08 Sun 31-Jan-2010 by Snackspot # permalink comment
Comment: Sorry, forgot to mention that there won't be the usual sighting post this week - but you can hear me expound my ill-informed "Galaxy is from Mars, Cadbury is from Venus" theory about the Kraft buyout about 11min30 into this podcast here (and normal service will resume soon!)


Posted: 19:41 Sun 31-Jan-2010 by "Nick T" # permalink comment
Comment: "Nestlé's sort of... transgender". Say whaaat? Well admittedly they do make Yorkie (is that truck driver out of Village People?), Walnut Whips, Oh Henry! (ooh matron!), Vice Versas, Butterfinger (I'm not going there), and who could resist a bit of Turkish Delight?
Posted: 11:03 Sat 24-Jul-2010 by "Kat" # permalink comment
Comment: Does anyone remember the Peanut Lion bar - how does that not make the review or the decade? It was AWESOME!!!
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