Who remembers these ads, for Taster’s Choice Coffee?
I know we have a contingent here who will remember the couple advertising Gold Blend instant coffee, which is the same thing, because both are Nescafé. Which explains why, when I was in Singapore and the in-room coffee service served Nescafé instant, I thought it tasted a lot like Taster’s Choice.
Instant coffee used to be huge. I’ve always heard that it was because men who returned from the World War II battlefields had gotten so used to drinking it that they wanted it when they got home, too. Look back at old commercials and there are almost as many commercials for instant coffee as there are for regular. Sometimes even more. Both Danny Thomas and Andy Griffith advertised for Maxwell House instant (it was Teddy Roosevelt that allegedly gave them their slogan, “good to the last drop”). Restaurants used to serve packets of instant Sanka (the first decaffeinated coffee that I can remember) with a small pot of hot water when people would order decaf in a restaurant. Robert Young (TV’s Marcus Welby, MD) used to do the commercials for Sanka.
Taster’s Choice reminds me of Grandma Holton. She used to drink it all the time. She’d put a heaping teaspoonful of Taster’s Choice in a tall mug and add boiling water and a teaspoon of half & half. The stuff was lethal the way she made it, because a level teaspoon made a very strong cup as it was. Grandma lived to 92. Maybe it was the coffee.
The Gold Blend/Taster’s Choice couple are played by Anthony Head (the brother of Murray, who went on to fame and fortune in TV’s Buffy The Vampire Slayer) and Sharon Maugham, a British actress who’s appeared in a lot of TV shows and movies, as many British actors and actresses are wont to do. She was in an episode of Inspector Morse once, and the writer, being a smartass, had her character say “Coffee? Ugh, I hate coffee! It gives me a headache!”
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