Nerds Hot and Cool – Discovered!! A World Premiere!!

CC_Nerds Hot and Cool TITLE PLATE

It’s been a busy few weeks of research here at HQ and today I’m excited to bring a groovy confectionery discovery (and new exclusive) to light:  the only known image of a Nerds Hot and Cool candy box!

One of my goals for has always been to uncover evidence of the countless candy products that have been lost to time and whose only proof of existence today are the faded memories of the people who saw them when they were originally on store shelves.

Nerds Hot and Cool is one I’ve been hunting for, for a long time and until now to no avail.  (I’d even contacted Nestle-Wonka in the past to inquire if they had any images of this one in their company files – and they reported that they did not – which only adds to today’s excitement.)

Before getting to today’s big unveiling, I should point out that before finding this material, I’d assumed this product was called Nerds Hot and Cold.  This is due to the fact that all anecdotal references to them on the internet (as well as the Wikipedia entry) refer to them as such.   It reveals something I’ve encountered many times – it’s that where memories of specific candy products are concerned – the details are often wrong.  I’m happy to finally correct that mass misconception because today’s exclusive image also reveals the true name of this product: Nerds Hot and Cool.

I first wrote about these Nerds during’s Cinnamon Hot Week last year, where I even mocked up what I thought a Hot and Cold Nerds box might look like.  Here’s that mockup (which I based upon an early 80’s Nerds box.):

Nerds Hot and Cold - CollectingCandy mock-up

Nerds Hot and Cold – CollectingCandy mock-up

While I think I did a pretty good job on that mockup based upon available references, it turns out that it doesn’t really look like the actual Nerds Hot and Cool boxes that existed or the image I’m unveiling today.   So let’s get to it!

Without further ado, here is the world internet premiere first look at a Nerds Hot and Cool candy box!

    Willy Wonka - Nerds Hot and Cool candy box - 1989 - exclusive world premier image

Willy Wonka – Nerds Hot and Cool candy box – 1989 – exclusive world premiere image

Pretty neat, don’t you think?  This also proves that Nerds were cool decades before most people thought so – ha!

Of course I’d love to find an actual Nerds Hot and Cool box for my collection (and one that I could share here) but for now I’m thrilled to have this image to showcase and to help put to rest some of the misconceptions about this product.  [Note: The only thing I really can’t discern with certainty from this image is just what flavor the “cool” side of the Nerds box represented.  Wintergreen?  Peppermint?]

Today’s world premiere image comes from a 1989 candy trade ad I discovered during my research last month.  Here is the full-page ad:

Willy Wonka Brands - Plumper Nerds - exclusive Nerds Hot and Cool - candy trade magazine ad - Jan-Feb 1989

Willy Wonka Brands – Plumper Nerds – exclusive Nerds Hot and Cool – candy trade magazine ad – Jan-Feb 1989

So that’s it – another previously lost piece of confectionery history uncovered.   That was fun!

Due to the disposable nature of candy packaging, the vast majority of its history has been thus far lost in the rubbish bins of the world.  But like today’s post, I hope to continue to uncover, preserve and share as much of it as I can right here on this site.

If you ever come across an old candy wrapper or box and think it’s something I’d be interested in here at (and I probably will be), drop me a line.

And that’s everything for today’s world premiere post and the only place you’ll find an image of a Nerds Hot and Cool candy box online.  Hope you liked it and I’ll see you next time!!

CC_Nerds Hot and Cool closing image

About Jason Liebig

A New York City based writer, editor and sometimes actor. After spending much of the 1990′s in the comic book business helping tell the stories of Marvel Comics’ X-Men as series editor, he has since split his time between developing his own entertainment properties while still consulting and working on others. Having been described as “the Indiana Jones of lost and forgotten candy”, Jason is one of the country’s premier candy collectors and historians with his discoveries appearing in countless blogs, magazines, newspaper articles, and books. Always happy to share his knowledge and unique perspectives on this colorful part of our popular culture, Jason has consulted with New York’s Museum of Food and Drink and has also been a featured guest on Food Network’s Heavyweights, France’s M6 Capital, and New York’s My Google Profile+
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15 Responses to Nerds Hot and Cool – Discovered!! A World Premiere!!

  1. luke norrad says:

    So great, what a sweet package! Good detective work tracking that one down!

  2. Mark says:

    It’s interesting to me how so few companies kept records of their package designs over the years. I would assume everything these days is stored digitally which makes it easier, but I guess back in the day they just saw absolutely no need to keep them around. Not surprising, considering ABC once threw an entire network of master videotapes into the river to save space.

    Congrats on the find. This type of stuff is fascinating to me.

  3. Brandon says:

    That is very exciting to see! Great looking box!

  4. Rebbeca Fox says:

    I’ve always loved Nerds. I came across your post here and I *swear to god* I remember eating these. I would have been 10, so my memories are not the clearest, but I think I really remember the “cool” flavor being a sweet mint, very wintergreen-ish.

    • Tim H says:

      My vague memory is that the cool side tasted like wintergreen, like others have said. What was the hot side like? Hot cinnamon? I don’t really recall. I was a huge Nerds fan as a kid, but these were only out for a while, and most of the time i bough the orange/cherry or the grape/strawberry. It was nice to see the watermelon/rainbow…thanks for the memories!

  5. Carleen says:

    I had these, and remember the box vividly! Surprising that it’s one of those hard-to-find history deals now! The HOT side tasted like cinnamon, and the COOL side tasted like…. PEPTO BISMOL. I still hate the taste of that kind of mint. Ugh! 😛

  6. TOTALLY remember these. Also—TOTALLY remember NOT liking these!
    An excellent find.

    HOWEVER, seeing that Nerds trade ad –specifically the box of Watermelon and Rainbow… my personal favorite back in the day– really took me back. Funny how just the image of the box: the colors against the white background can transport you.

    Great candy archaeology my friend!

  7. Tony says:

    I remember these! I only had a few boxes of these back in the Day (1989 is about right), but I loved ’em! The cool flavor was like wintergreen from what I can remember, and it sucked when they quit making them. To this day, I’ve liked the whole fire and ice combination of flavors. Great to see the box again after all these years!

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  9. Doug says:

    I wish they would bring these back. I used to go to Playco a couple times a week to get these as a kid…these were my favorite Nerds of all time. I couldn’t believe it when they stopped making them, they were so good.

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  11. Sheels says:

    I loved Nerds. Every day my Grandmother would take me to the Liquor store to get these. The Hot/Cool were not good at all. My favorite was Lemon/Lime and Blueberry/Raspberry. Now that would be a rare find.

  12. Tara Serene says:

    Cinnamon and peppermint. They were my favorite. I still look for them.

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