What ever happened to this guy!? That was a great candy! I've never liked grape flavored anything, but I always did have a special place in my heart for Alexander The Grape. Mmmm....they were good. They were kind of like little hard candies with a somewhat softer chewy coating. They are kind of hard to describe, I guess that's what made them so great. If you've ever had a Lemonhead, Alexander The Grape is just a grape version of that candy. In fact Alexander later changed his name to Grapehead before falling off the face of the Earth!
Alexander The Grape had so many friends, each just as tasty as the last! There was Mr. Melon who tasted like watermelon....those might have been my favorite. And there was Johnny Apple Treat, kind of like Johnny Appleseed but with much more sugar. Those were good too! And who can forget Alexander's Asian friend, who managed to solve crimes while tasting like delicious sweet artificial cherries, yes...we're talking about Cherry Chan. Cherry Chan's name was written on the box with the exact same faux-Chinese font that got McDonald's into a heap of trouble when they had their Oriental McNuggets. Man, Cherry Chan was awesome! They were better than real cherries! I'd never take a Cherry Chan off my sundae!
These candies and many more were produced by the Ferrara Pan company of Forest Park, IL. Ferrara Pan is still around today. They continue to manufacture Lemonheads, as well as some other classic candy like Jawbusters, Atomic Fireballs, and Boston Baked Beans. Mmmm...those Boston Baked Beans were good too, I haven't seen them in a while! They used to make another great candy called Fruit Cocktail Imperials, but those are also sadly out of production.
All their candy used to come in small boxes and would sell for ten cents. This is still in the early 80's I'm talking about! We used to ride our bikes down to the old Funn-Putt (not Putt-Putt) mini golf course in the Oakland Mills Shopping Center and get all sorts of boxes of candy with our spare change that we could dig up! We'd eat some right away, and then save some boxes for later. We would trade...a couple of Cherry Chans for a few Mr. Melons. Good times! Do kids today get these experiences!? I guess they can still ride their bikes to the 7-11 or Highs, but it's not the same as a little mom and pop store! And you can't get anything for a dime anymore....at a 7-11? Forget about it! Not that a box of grape candy would satisfy a child today anyways. Nowadays they probably ride their bikes down to the corner store for some Red Bull and Altoids!
It's just another thing these kids today are missing out on! Don't even get me started on prizes in cereal boxes and Saturday morning cartoons! ....Man, I could really go for a Cherry Chan right about now!