It’s a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside a taco and loved by all. And now it’s over.
Yesterday, Big Ice Cream’s Klondike delivered the unthinkable news: it is discontinuing the Choco Taco—sounding the death knell of a frozen treat that represents the best of the American experiment.
“Over the past 2 years, we have experienced an unprecedented spike in demand across our portfolio and have had to make very tough decisions to ensure availability of our full portfolio nationwide,” read a statement from Unilever, Klondike’s parent company, the Washington Post reports. “A necessary but unfortunate part of this process is that we sometimes must discontinue products, even a beloved item like Choco Taco.”
And so began the wailing and gnashing of teeth across social media. “Choco Taco has fallen,” one tweet decried. “They always take the best things away from us,” opined another. Many faulted the humanity of Klondike’s taskmasters.
The street-foods marriage of taco and ice cream cone first took place in 1983, producing a child born of desire rather than cross-promotional marketing. Alan Drazen, of the Jack and Jill Ice Cream Company, set the sweet-savory mixture of ice cream, chocolate, and nuts within a wafflecone taco shell, and began selling them in mobile vending trucks in Philadelphia. The good news spread to convenience stores for another year before Good Humor-Breyers picked up the torch in the 90s and brought them to supermarkets nationwide.
Eventually the dessert barons at Unilever, which now owns Klondike, began to distribute the product more widely. As it withdrew a key pillar of support of our pandemic-buffeted nation, Unilever added insult to injury in the end of its announcement: “We know this may be very disappointing, but we hope you’ll try one of our other great products, including Klondike Cones, Shakes, Sandwiches, and of course, our signature Bar available nationwide.”
Crestfallen Americans know just what Unilever can do with that Klondike bar.
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