Quality Street is a camp British Christmas classic. They’re what Saddam Hussein offered to George Galloway on his visit to Iraq and – appropriately, given that – there have been some flavour casualties over the years. These include: Peanut Cracknell (chocolate around peanut-flavoured shards), Coffee Cream (a church-roof fundraiser in confectionery form), the Almond Octagon (I’m not making this up) and the Dandelion Dodecahedron (I am making this up). Of course, everyone has their QS faves, plus second and third choices, in case their faves are everyone else’s faves too. But what do they say about you?
The Purple One
You are a deranged, Emperor Nero-style demigod. You’re hoping that ‘I Claudius’ will be on on Boxing Day, as you lie there, stupefied with wine and seedless grapes, luxuriating in your toga, hoping for a flash of nipple. Actually it will be ‘How to Train Your Dragon 2’ accompanied by the hysterical screaming of some of the children who have inexplicably appeared in your house, but a man’s got to dream.
The Green Triangle
It’s a colour-coded shape: what do you think it says about you? It says you’re thick, or not good with words, or a hopeless alcoholic. The green triangle is a triumph of formatting: easy to spot in the tin, you can then point it out to whoever is looking after you over Christmas with your foot. If the green triangle is your favourite, bravo! You are developing coping strategies.
You’re a pensioner, or looking forward to becoming one. This is what passed for Continental sophistication before people ever left our tiny grey island (note it’s neither ‘cream’ nor ‘crème’ but somewhere in between). The ’70s were great, weren’t they? All Ford Capris and plastic furniture. Not the three-day week and the Guildford Four. Do you find your thoughts straying to Eastbourne? Are you considering getting a grey leather blouson? Have you stopped putting the Cotton Traders catalogue straight in the bin?
You’re always up for a thrill at Christmas. The Toffee Finger is a filling-pulling delight which you can nibble demurely from one end, or insert widthways, like the young Black Beauty being forced to accept his first bit. Fun times! To quote my Aunty Joyce: ‘I’ve had a satsuma, a couple of nuts and now I’m ready for a hard toffee finger.’ God rest her soul.
You’re a straightforward person. Speak as you find. No messing about with this one. It’s fudge, yeah? Fudge, mate. FUDGE. Hands up who likes fudge. No one. Yeah.
You’re a weirdo. In fact, get out of my house. The Toffee Penny is a confectionery abomination. Disgustingly nude in a tin full of chastely chocolate-covered sweeties, the only possible explanation for its perversity is that it’s for people who keep buying chocolates then remembering that they don’t like bloody chocolate. Texturewise, it’s like the top of a very very old man’s head. If this is your favourite, then you basically hate Christmas, humans and yourself.
You’re a massive stoner. You’re Stone Henge. Right now you’re sitting on a Persian carpet hitting a bong that’s shaped like a Mexican crystal skull, watching a video of the test card on YouTube. The Caramel Swirl is a psychedelic wig-out, in that it sounds pretty mind-blowing, but is actually just kind of ho-hum. Go on, quote that bit out of ‘Withnail & I’ again: you know, the funny bit.
Milk Chocolate Block
You’re a martyr, and no one likes a martyr. You don’t really want the Milk Chocolate Block: it’s the equivalent of someone giving you something you already own as a present ‘just so you’ve got something to unwrap’. But it fits perfectly with your hangdog, ‘I used to do 60-hour shifts at a pork-crackling facility in Nantwich’ air of phoney self-denial. Just stop it, will you?
You’re either colour-blind, and thought it was a different one, or you’re extremely susceptible to marketing, and assume the second half of the name is literally true. Pull yourself together: it’s a poor man’s Turkish Delight, and that really is bloody saying something.
More toffee… You’re a sucker for punishment (first confectionery joke). If you’ve seen off the hard one, the swirly one and the lumpy one, only one caramel QS goal remains: the deluxe one. Tastefully wrapped in brown (so you know just what to expect), the Toffee Deluxe says that you’re basically a cautious person: you’re not about to aim high to fall low. Slow and steady wins the race. You won’t bite off more than you can chew (second confectionery joke). Light… fading. So… sleepy.
Orange Chocolate Crunch
You’re a bent copper. Or an unusually intelligent bent police dog.
You’re a proper old smoothy. You know how to show a guy/gal/guy-gal a good time. The sheer tropical exoticism of the Coconut Éclair suggests all kinds of kinky possibilities. Sure, your attitudes might be a bit old-fashioned, and the light has to fall from a certain angle to bring out your best side, but you know what? You’re okay. We like you. (Oh yeah, and it’s not a mini-Bounty. You can find a mini-Bounty in a box of Celebrations, which are workplace chocolates, ya loser.)