Sunday, April 7, 2013

When Franco American Was the King of Gravies

I could take it no longer and recently wrote an email to Campbell’s (owners of Franco American)
Dear Sirs, I have enjoyed your many products since I was a little boy in the 1960s. You had one particular gravy back then that was head and shoulders above any other gravy I have ever had. You still carry the Franco American chicken gravy, but it is simply not the same. I talked with my older sister about this the other day and she concurred. It was just an extraordinary gravy you had in the 60s. In the early 70s it changed. I don’t know if something was left out or added or both, but it changed. It was still good, but not AS good as it had once been. And now, sadly, I can seldom find it at all. The few times I’ve run into it at a market, it’s usually the fat-free chicken gravy, and frankly, THAT is inedible it taste so bad. The chicken gravy you had in the 60s was so good we used to crumple up bread in it and eat it like soup! We poured it over mashed potatoes, steaks, even spinach and broccoli wasn’t terrible when it had Franco American chicken gravy on it! There have been a half dozen or so food products that I’ve missed over the years because they’re either no longer made, or not made the same. I have lamented the loss of none of them half so much as your gravy when it was still the king of gravies. Please consider tracking down the recipe from the 1960s and re-establishing this wonderful gravy. I don’t want my children (if I ever have any) to grow-up in a world without the gravy that ruined me for all others. Sincerely, ____(me)
This is coupon circa 1960 for an actual can of the best gravy ever made.

This is how it looks now on the rare occasion that you can find it, but it’s not nearly as good as it used to be.
While we’re on the subject, here are a couple of other items that just aren’t as good as they used to be. Anyone remember the original Doritos Nacho Cheese from the 1980s?

They were unbelievably good! Now I simply cannot eat them. The Cool Ranch actually taste a little closer to the original Nacho Cheese, but still aren’t as good.

And how about those Pillsbury Blueberry Turnovers are moms taught us to make when we were kids? Man those were delicious! Sadly, Pillsbury quit making the best product they ever had.

And something a little more recent, if you have a Rally’s in your area then you probably know that they had a big drawing card in their Double Mushroom & Swiss Burger.

It wasn’t about the mushrooms. Mushrooms don’t really have much taste. It was about the gravy! In fact, they would have probably sold more if they had left out the mushrooms and just called it a gravy burger! Then a couple of years ago they quit making the double and sold only singles. Somehow, they just weren’t the same. Then people quit buying them, so they dropped the Mushroom & Swiss altogether. I have no more reason to go to Rally’s. Yes, Hardees and a couple of others make Mushroom and Swiss burgers, but they don’t have nearly enough gravy to make them enticing. Life is all about the gravy!

Lastly we have good old Lucky Whip! The last, and only great, whip cream ever made! There will never be another whip cream that can hold a candle to Lucky Whip.


  1. I wish Doritos would make their original recipe! I can't stand this new Cheesier, more seasoned, junk!!!!

  2. I WISH I could find that gravy! Nothing compares! Also, those turn overs, cherry ones were the best ever. I miss the good old days when food had flavor!