The Duke de Richleau and Rex Van Ryn had gone into dinner at eight o’clock but coffee was not served till after ten.
Dennis Wheatley, “The Devil Rides Out”, 1934
We’re in Courvoisier territory again. Serve up a box of After Eight Chocolate Mint Wafers to your dinner party guests, and you will be instantly transported into the world of the sophisticated Society Hostess: elegant country house parties, stuccoed London town houses, a Rolls Royce Silver Cloud in Dove Grey, Chinese antiques and private chefs; a box at Covent Garden. Or that, at least, is how the 1960’s adman envisaged it.
“Every woman loves temptation, that’s the secret of After Eight” purrs Mrs Roy Boulting, wife of the producer of “I’m All Right Jack”. Did she really serve up After Eights to her fashionable guests? Somehow I suspect not. But then did Patricia Neal really placate her mercurial husband, Roald Dahl, with a cup of lover-ly Maxwell House- “Good to the Last Drop”?
"The fascinating history of the mint has been collated by Nestle's archive curator Alex Hutchinson who recently rediscovered the old ads and publicity shots." You can read more about it here.
The Louis XV style clock on the After Eights box, if you ever wondered, used to grace the board room of Rowntree’s, the famous York chocolate manufacturer, and according to The Daily Mail disappeared under mysterious circumstances in the 1980’s. I would love to know where it is now.