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Esurientes - The Comfort Zone

Monday, March 07, 2005

A sight for any (homesick) Australian

Expat Australians the world over....what does these photos say to you? Do your eyes mist up and your heart sigh in longing? ;-) For that matter, past visitors to Australia....do these chocolate bars bring back any memories?
What do we have above? Well, we have a little tableau courtesy of Cadbury Australia, makers of the majority of Australian chocolate treats. Cadbury chocolate is known by Aussies, Brits and Kiwis as tasting pretty damn fine, for commercial chocolate bars and Hershey's can't even compare (although I don't think Hershey's is so awful, really). I'm sure Aussies will be jumping to explain but I'll get in first-
Left to Right:
*Caramello Koala (arguably the definitive Australian-themed chocolate treat. My choice of words was carefully deliberate there!) Giant sized! A chocolate in the shape of a happy koala, filled with flowing, gooey caramel.
*Strawberry Twin Freddo Frogs - Chocolate frogs filled with pink strawberry filling. You either love em or hate em. I prefer the peppermint freddos, with their lurid green filling.
*Freddo Frog - Also giant sized! Cadbury chocolate in the shape of a frog. An Aussie favourite since 1930. The chocolate makes it good. :-)
*Crunchie- Oooh, the controversy. Crunchie was released as a direct competitor to the Violet Crumble, a very popular Australian chocolate bar of honeycomb covered in chocolate. Debate RAGES! It rages FIERCELY over which is better. Staunch supporters of Australian culture always choose Violet Crumble over the perceived imposter. It's also pretty well accepted that the quality of the honeycomb in a Violet Crumble is superior to a Crunchie, but many say the quality of the Cadbury chocolate in the Crunchie is better than the Violet Crumble (now owned by Nestle). I got into quite a heated debate with friends on the weekend about the respective merits, so I'm planning a Crunchie/Violet Crumble tasteoff in the near future. I will blog this event. There will be photos. I will have a clipboard. It will be very serious.
*Cherry Ripe- This is another choccie bar with an Australian heritage. It's cherries and coconut covered in dark chocolate. Despite all that it has going for it, and my love of dark chocolate (there's not enough chocolate bars for dark chocolate lovers!) I don't really go for this as much as you'd expect. I think there's too much coconut and it gets stuck in your throat! But, I ADORE the Cherry Ripe icecream on a stick - cherries and coconut mixed into vanilla icecream and coated in thick dark chocolate. That is bliss.

Why do I have a box of hundreds of Cadbury chocolate bars? Want to see more?

A and I spent last weekend surrounded by many, many boxes of chocolates for a fundraising drive in support of our vocal group. We're planning to tour Europe again next year, and we made a lot of money with chocolate drives last year. Since Cadbury got into the fundraising scene, with their name-brand chocolates, they've been the leaders for most groups trying to raise money. They're easy to sell and you get a profit of 50% of each item you sell. Take a box into work and when it comes to 4pm in a large office, it's not difficult to sell a giant Freddo frog for only $1 to a worker in need of a sugar hit! $1 or $2 (for bigger bars) is affordable and gives the pleasure of good chocolate and the knowledge you're helping your friends raise money for whatever thing they're trying to do (soccer club, drama society, new classroom, European tour...)

So, last weekend we found ourselves surrounded by over $1000 worth of chocolate and a large piece of floor space needed to mix up the contents so everybody had a mixed selection to sell. Besides the things mentioned above, we also had bags of Chupa Chups, bags of mini Easter eggs, Natural Confectionary Company jelly snakes (these taste incredibly good...and they're good for the people who don't want chocolate!) and Summer Rolls/Nougat Honey Logs .
And, you know over $1000 worth of chocolate only packs into 24 boxes. Most of us managed to sell through an entire $60 box in the first week! I can see a few more of these drives to come, and a few more Saturday afternoons debating how many bags of snakes should go in each box while surrounded by thousands of happy Caramello koalas (see below!)

Incidentally, here's a photo of our loungeroom floor right in the middle of the packing. This shows about 1/2 of the stock; there were more boxes behind A, who was sitting there with paper and pen working out calculations (simulatanous equations, no less! I last did them in Yr 10!) of how to divide up the stock...

It wasn't so bad really...anything you can do while watching James Bond's Octopussy on the TV has to be fun!


  • Argh! I'm green with envy here - why is foreign candy always so much more exciting? :) Besides, it's almost lunch time and I'm really, really hungry. The soup I brought doesn't really sound good anymore - I want chocolate! And it's all your fault! :)

    By Blogger Anne, at 3/07/2005 09:37:00 pm  

  • "It's also pretty well accepted that the quality of the honeycomb in a Violet Crumble is superior to a Crunchie"


    Only in your neck of the woods, mate.

    ~Crunchie Lover

    By Blogger Sam, at 3/08/2005 02:28:00 am  

  • Is this the same Cadbury that we get in America? They're pretty big around Easter (Cadbury eggs, a childhood favorite).
    I agree though; candy and chocolate from other countries always seems more fun. My husband I made a point to pick up all sorts of goodies when we were in Ireland...they get all the good stuff!

    By Blogger Stephanie, at 3/08/2005 05:01:00 am  

  • I can't understand the Crunchie bar, the crunchie part always tastes funny to me.

    As for Cadbury, Commonwealthers and the Irish do seem to get better quality then we get in the States. I myslef really miss the kiwifruit filled Cadbury bars of NZ.


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/08/2005 06:33:00 am  

  • I love Cherry Ripe. They were not available when I first came to live in NZ and every trip home to Australia I stocked up on Cherry Ripes. You can now buy them in NZ.

    By Blogger Barbara, at 3/08/2005 06:57:00 pm  

  • Anne - I'm sorry! But I have to say that nothing beat the European chocolate I was buying over there last year. Even in the most budget supermarket (Aldi!) you could find good quality chocolate...I actually returned with over 4 kilos of the stuff!

    Stephanie -It is the same company, at least it's owned by the same parent company, but the chocolate differs slightly in each country. British Cadbury tastes different to Austrlian Cadbury (not in a bad way), and I seem to recall US Cadbury was different; sweeter, I think. Sweeter would make sense as most US chocolate is very sweet, like Hershey's. Can anyone confirm?

    Sam - I haven't actually tasted a Violet Crumble in years, but I do remember that the honeycomb seems to be drier, denser and without that funny fizzy stick-to-your-tongue feeling of the Crunchie (which I do like!). It may interest you that I was the one sticking up for the Crunchie against a tide of Violet Crumble supporters last weekend!

    Paul - I can't say I immediately embrace the idea of kiwifruit filled chocolate, but I'm sure it'd be good. It'd have a tart flavour like raspberry in chocolate, wouldn't it? And I can understand how the honeycomb may taste funny in a Crunchie; it *is* funny tasting, but I think that is why it's so popular

    Barbara - I had never thought that Cherry Ripes wouldn't be available in NZ, but now I remember that for many years they were owned by Macphersons, before they were bought by Cadbury. Macphersons was a Melbourne company, and Melbourne was a Cherry Ripe town...in fact Richmond train station is often known as "Cherry Ripe" for the large number of billboards advertising them!

    By Blogger Niki, at 3/08/2005 10:36:00 pm  

  • ooh why oh why can't they get the crunchie chocolate with the VC honeycomb? i know there's that whole two-competiting-global-conglomerates issue but surely this is one issue on which they should work together!?

    i'm an aussie living in scotland and have spent the morning reading your blog, came over via the End of month egg thingie. you have such fantastic writing and photos and now i'm hungry *and* homesick :)

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4/04/2005 07:29:00 pm  

  • Shauny, you have given probably the biggest compliment in a long time! I'm thrilled that you enjoy reading the blog, and I love that an Aussie in Scotland enjoys it for a taste of home. You've made my day! Thank you!
    As for the VC/Crunchie thing, I'm totally with you. Now *that* would end a lot of arguments!

    By Blogger Niki, at 4/04/2005 08:17:00 pm  

  • I've decided that my drag name should be Violent Crumble.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5/13/2005 03:45:00 am  

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