Sunnyboys, Smarties, White Knights, Choo-Choo Bars and Twisties

Ok, there's no real rhyme or reason for this frivolous commercial treatise, except that I happened to be reminiscing about the favoured junk food of my childhood (clearly I don't have enough to occupy my mind) and felt moved to jot my juvenile preferences down for posterity, though owing to my tragically sweet tooth, this is by no means an exhaustive list..

Vintage Jubbley's. Image from Tetrapak
Sunnyboy trianguar frozen orange drinks have been a staple after school delicacy for kids for over forty years. Many a hot summer's day, if I had the cash I used to head to the Milk Bar after the final bell and walk home sucking on an ice cold orange, razz (raspberry) or glug(cola) flavoured Sunnyboy...ah! Sometimes they'd be frustratingly hard to prize open - you had to squeeze from the bottom up.

Sunnyboys first appeared in 1971 and, acccording to Wikipedia at least,  were invented by a guy called Jake Phin, who first sold them in his general store in Flinders, Victoria.

However I don't think Phin can take credit for inventing the concept, as before Sunnyboys, there were English Jubbly's, which I believe  disappeared from the market in Australia sometime in the 60s.

"Buy some for Lulu"
I have no idea who Lulu was but before M&Ms infiltrated the Australian home-grown market, Smarties had the chocolate filled, coloured candy market cornered.

These were fun to play with as well as to eat as they were so highly packed with a variety of artificial colours you just had to spend time sorting out which ones to eat first, starting with red and ending with the least desirable brown ones.

White Knights
Tough and chewy white mint-flavoured candy something or other, covered in milk chocolate, these were a tooth-rotting delight but sadly, they're not what they were. For one thing the wrapping is no longer that lovely thick, shiny blue and white foil it used to be but more importantly, they've shrunk in size significantly. It could be that I've just got bigger...but I don't think so.

Choo Choo Bars
One of the best things about Choo Choo bars, apart from the cute wrapper with the train on the front, was the price - they were cheap, which meant that you afford to throw one into your bag of personally selected mixed lollies. Like White Nights, only more so, these were made for pulling out teeth but they lasted for ages and left you with a tell-tale black  liquorice infested mouth.

Strangely, after all these years I'm still partial to Twisties. In fact, I have to guiltily admit to consuming a packet even while writing this post.I can happily live without all the others but I still quite regularly buy Twisties, even though I'm now aware that they are not much more than salt and some sort of processed, dried-up substance....cheese perhaps?  There could well be a deep-rooted, Freudian neurosis involved somewhere but I'm not going there.

Twisties were my first remembered favourite store bought snack and my first experience with insidious 'brand loyalty'. Later, when I'd expanded my culinary junkfood menu, I'd feel slightly guilty if I bought a packet of Colvan's Salt and Vinegar instead. Even today, when searching for a miscellaneous snack down the supermarket isle, I feel drawn to the Twisties shelf, as if some long embedded childhood memory is compelling me, out of loyalty or something else,  to chuck a packet in the trolley. Ah well, life's pretty straight without twisties. (sheesh, I have been indoctrinated).

The Old Milk Bar