The Graveyard Of Shelved Ice Cream Flavors | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio
Filed Under:

The Graveyard Of Shelved Ice Cream Flavors

Play associated audio

The first installment in Dead Stop, Morning Edition's summer road trip series about interesting gravesites in America.

When the Ben and Jerry's ice cream company kills a flavor, it's treated with respect — including a burial in the company's "Flavor Graveyard."

"I think we've got the best, and the not-best, up here," Sean Greenwood, Ben and Jerry's Grand Poobah of Publicity, says from the cemetery in Waterbury, Vt.

"Flavors like Wild Maine Blueberry. It's been decades since we made this flavor, but we used to have the trucks back up here with truckloads of blueberries," he says, "and everyone would pitch in and unload the blueberries, and make it while the blueberries were fresh."

In what may be a nod to the current zombie fad, Ben and Jerry's also offers customers a chance to make the case for resurrecting a favorite flavor.

But that doesn't mean every flavor should be brought back. In particular, Greenwood cites "the dreaded Sugar Plum" ice cream, a mix of plum and caramel that he says should remain six feet under.

Customers and employees alike feel pangs of sadness when their favorite flavors either fail to catch on or can't recover from hard times. For instance, a particular ingredient might become too costly, or a kitchen process might be too complicated to continue.

"You feel bad when the good ones just don't make it anymore," Greenwood says.

A prime example is Rainforest Crunch, Greenwood says. He recites an elegiac poem dedicated to the flavor:

"With aching heart and heavy sigh, we bid Rainforest Crunch goodbye; that nutty brittle from exotic places got sticky in between our braces. 1989-1996. It was a really, really good flavor."

Like most cemeteries, the Flavor Graveyard attracts its share of mourners and other visitors.

"It's not uncommon," Greenwood says. "You walk up to the graveyard here, and there'll be fans that are up here putting flowers next to a headstone, or down on one knee, kind of paying their respects."

To nominate your favorite gravesite, write a comment below, or use the hashtag #nprdeadstop on Twitter or Instagram.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Miss Colombia Wins Pageant; Miss Jamaica Wins Twitter?

Days later, bad feelings linger among the Miss Universe pageant viewers who believe that the wrong contestant won. Many watchers on social media say Miss Jamaica should being wearing the crown.
NPR

Watch 'Bob's Burgers'? Now You Can Eat Them, Too

What happens when you try to make a burger out of a pun? One blog, two years, and dozens of recipes later, millions of fans can now cook up their very own Bob's burgers.
NPR

Obama Moves To Cement His Environmental Legacy

He took steps to protect land in Alaska from oil and gas drilling, and to allow offshore drilling along the coasts of Virginia, the Carolinas and Georgia — part of a climate change strategy.
NPR

Yahoo Plans To Spin Off Remaining Stake In Alibaba

Yahoo has announced it will spin off its 15 percent stake in the Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba. Shareholders had been waiting for that decision.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.