Food Industry

Chipwich Inventor Dies

Richard LaMotta, who created the Chipwich from his Sweet Tooth ice cream parlor in Englewood, New Jersey, passed away two days ago at age 67. The bearded Brooklyn native came up with the notion in the late Seventies -- a  four-ounce slab of vanilla ice cream, sandwiched between chocolate chip cookies and studded with chocolate nibs -- then spent time figuring out how to keep the cookies crunchy after being in the freezer. Figure it out he did. The Chipwich name was figured out by Ann Dermansky, winner of LaMotta's name-this-ice-cream-sandwich contest.

LaMotta didn't have enough money to roll it out in traditional form, so he took his cue from the hot dog vendors, and hired an army of people to sell them from push carts on the streets of New York City. The Chipwich became an icon.

In 1992, LaMotta sold the Chipwich brand to the makers of Eskimo Pie for $9.2 million. Nestle acquired Eskimo Pie and Chipwich for $18.9 million in 2007 -- and promptly killed off the beloved Chipwich. In its short but glorious lifetime, over a billion Chipwich ice cream sandwiches were sold.

Old question: Who makes better chocolate, Hershey or Nestle?
New question: Which company is run by bigger morons?

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Miami New Times' restaurant reviewer for the past decade, and the world's indisputable master of disguise.
Contact: Lee Klein

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