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A Chilly ReQuest

Posted Apr 21 2012 12:00am

Flowers.  Birds.  Sunlight.  Rain showers.

And Rita's.

As in Rita's Italian Ice.  As in the one that is within walking distance of our condo.  As in both the best and worst place it could possibly be.

Don't worry, my friends; Rita's hasn't knocked me off the sugar-free wagon; they offer several yummy sugar-free varieties of ice for when I'm on the wagon, and lots of other options for when I park the wagon to get out and stretch a little.

The Sous Chef doesn't have much of a sweet tooth, but this Spring, on an everyday trip to Rita's, he stumbled upon Bubblicious.  Yes, the bubble gum.  They had ice flavored like cheap bubble gum.

And he can't get enough of it.

It's almost every night now.  We'll just be finishing a fine dinner of broiled salmon, fresh vegetables, and wild rice, and he'll put down his fork, look at me, and say, "You wanna?"

If only he meant a trip to the bedroom.

But no, he means a trip across the street to see if they've got Bubblicious available.

Which is why, when they told him that they were discontinuing the flavor, he pouted for about a week and a half.

I hate seeing the Sous Chef upset, especially because so few foods evoke such a sense of joy for him.  I went online and wrote to Rita's corporate headquarters, explaining my predicament:

My husband and I are lucky enough to live right across the street from a Rita's location.  We love walking there and indulging in Mistos, Gelatis, and on those really hot days, just some good old fashioned ICE.  My husband doesn't have a big sweet tooth, but he is head over heels in LOVE with the Bubblicious flavor.  He was very sad to hear that the flavor is being discontinued at the store - okay, "sad" isn't the right word.  He was devastated.  You should have seen it - a grown man, his head hanging in sorrow and despair.  Okay, maybe that's a bit dramatic - but you get my point.  Is there any way to save the Bubblicious?  It would make my husband so very, very happy.  Thanks!

Within a few hours, I received a response (I highlighted the highlight):

Thank you for your recent e-mail.  We appreciate the time you took to reach out to us and want you to know that your feedback is very important to our company.
As a fan, we hope you know how committed we are to making the tastiest and freshest treats.  With more than 40 flavors of Ice to choose from, unfortunately we have to make room for exciting new flavors by retiring some of our less popular ones.
Although we hate to see a grown man cry, our licensing agreement for Bubblicious expired and was not renewed. We apologize to your husband that he is disappointed and hope he falls in love with another flavor.
Rita’s is a franchise company with more than 500 stores in 18 states.  It is our pleasure to serve you and we look forward to seeing you at Rita’s again soon.
Thank you,
Rita’s Guest Service Team
I was discouraged, but not completely deterred.  Today, I went across the street and inquired about the beloved Bubblicious.  The manager told me they only had one more batch left to make.  It hadn't been prepared yet, but she offered to call me when it was ready.  Then she made me even happier when she said they'd make it today, as soon as they had room for it.
I got the call.
And I got a veritable crapload of ice:

Two-and-a-half gallons, to be precise.
That ought to hold him for a while.
Eat well.

On a side note, I received an email notice that my medal from the Foodie Wife Hall of Fame is being shipped via UPS and should arrive sometime Tuesday.
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