Monday, July 27, 2009

Hey! An Old Friend!

Today I ran into CVS Pharmacy to pick up a prescription. It wasn't quite ready yet, so I browsed through the store -- bought a Revlon lipstick to add to my collection of the same color -- Revlon is very nice but they only keep a color so long so I've been stockpiling No. 700s.

In cosmetics I spotted the last jar of Udderly Smooth, the hand cream (created for cow's udders!) and originally discovered at Trader Joe's (who quietly discontinued selling it.)

And then! A candy counter with Russell Stover chocolates! I haven't seen that in ages and Russell Stover is a very famous Kansas City, Mo. product where I grew up and where I got them for festive occasions -- toe of my Christmas stocking, for Easter... so I bought a 12 oz. box of assorted for $8.99.

Safely home, I peeled of the cellophane and opened the box -- each chocolate is labeled inside the box lid! I love that! None of this pig in a poke stuff -- 2nd row in, middle chocolate is a Vermont Nut Cream. And, my dears, the candies are labelled in three languages! English, French and Spanish! How's that for chic?

Russell Stover actually began in KCMO in 1921 as chocolate-coated vanilla ice cream bars -- the original Eskimo Pies! But competition crept in and the couple who owned it sold it for $25,000 and moved (dispiritedly, one assumes) to Denver where they switched to making chocolates.

In 1969, they sold it to one Louis Ward, whose descendants own it today. There are 50 company-owned stores and 70,000 accounts in 20 plus countries. Russell Stover is the 3rd largest brand (behind Hershey's and Mars) selling 100 million pounds of candy per year.

Not bad for sleepy old Kansas City, eh?

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