May 13, 2010

Cow Tales still tell a good story

Those of you who follow my Twitter account know that last week while meandering through a gas station I stumbled upon nostalgia in a long, thin wrapper: Cow Tales.

I don't know how long it had been since I ate one of the caramel tubes wrapped around a cream center, but my guess is it was when Taco Bell still advertised with a Chihuahua and KFC was still Kentucky Fried Chicken. Just seeing the box of cylindrical candy on the shelf brought me back at least ten years to a day when Hershey bars were still wrapped in real foil and Milky Ways weren't available in dark chocolate or all-caramel varieties. For a few moments the world of sweets became innocent, simple and unhindered by worries about cavities and calories.

And I'm barely an adult. I'm sure if I were out of my 20s the sight of a Cow Tale could bring back a bigger drawer full of repressed memories. Even so, I grabbed a taste of the classic candy while the moment was right.

I almost opted for the Strawberry Cow Tales that sat next to the traditional variety, but something stopped me. While I can't claim to know the history of the bovine derriere, I don't remember a strawberry version gracing the shelves of the candy barn while I was a kid. Maybe I'll review one of those in a few weeks, I thought. This was about a trip down memory lane.

As a brief aside, the intertubes tell me Cow Tales are actually available in a number of varieties including chocolate and caramel apple. The world, it seems, is always spinning, and companies are constantly looking for a way to milk a successful product for new triumphs. Hopefully I'll be able to track down some of these newfangled versions and tell you whether they're successful.

For now I can tell you the classic Cow Tale is still successful. Chewy caramel spoons with the sugary cream center for a treat that's equal parts sinful indulgence and necessary soul food. I felt years younger after my mouth listened to the tastes of the Cow Tale. For a few precious moments I was a bite-sized person experiencing the pure bliss of a sugary childhood snack.

Since it's such a classic, I feel no need to give this candy a traditional rating. Instead, let this post serve as a special tribute to a candy that has done so much to lift so many people's spirits. Cow Tales, Rick's Food Critique salutes you!

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