Brazilian Brands: Toddy & Toddynho

When I think of Brazilian food, the dishes that spring to mind are feijoada, moqueca, pão de queijo, picanha, farofa and I’d better stop before I start drooling on the keyboard. But if you asked someone else they might provide an alternative list: doce de leite, beijinhos de coco, pudim, kindim, pão de mel, creme de papaia com cassis and (of course) brigadeiro.

Brazilian cuisine provides plenty of satisfaction for savoury food people like me, but it also has a lot for you glucophiles. Today’s Brazilian brand falls squarely into the latter category – something this sweet was sure to be successful in Brazil wasn’t it?

 

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Toddynho

Toddy & Toddynho

Name: Toddy / Toddynho (sounds like Todgey and Todge-EEN-yo respectively).

Product: Chocolate powder / chocolate milk.

Background: In 1916 Pedro Erasmo Santiago, a Spanish immigrant in Puerto Rico, lost his entire Cacau plantation in a hurricane. He moved to the USA where he worked his way up from toilet cleaner to prosperous businessman in the food industry.

In 1928 he bought the rights to the brand name “Toddy” for all of South America. Prior to this, “Toddy” was the name of a Scottish drink made of blended whisky, sugar/honey and spices, served hot. However, Pedro’s product, a sweetened cocoa powder to be made into a chocolate drink, was just as often served cold.

In 1933 Pedro Santiago was granted permission to market Toddy in Brazil. He set up a factory in Lapa and set about marketting his product with innovative publicity stunts, such as using planes to write the name of his product in smoke in the skies over Rio.

In the following decades, Toddy became a hugely popular drink across Brazil. Although Toddy was the first chocolate powder in Brazil, other brands soon followed, notably Nescau made by evil Swiss company Nestlé.

Toddy-nescau

Toddy vs Nescau – the decades old battle between these two achocolatado giants is still going strong today. Many a fight has broken out in the playground over which is the better chocolate drink (note: this may or may not be true).

 

Verdict: Toddy comes in various forms – chocolate powder, chocolate drink, biscuits, breakfast cereals, etc. I always thought of Toddy as a chocolate powder and Toddynho as a ready-made drink in a carton. But when I went to buy a Toddynho this morning, do you know what I found? I found Toddy made up as a drink in a carton too! Near-identical products masquerading as competitors but actually made by the same company? Hardly unprecedented I guess. Just. AskAmbev

toddy-toddynho

Toddy and Toddynho – friends not competitors.

 

Anyway, I tried both drinks alongside each other and to me (no connoisseur) they were both very sweet and chocolatey. I actually preferred Toddy which was a lot more chocolatey and less creamy than Toddynho.

Regarding the rivalry with Nescau, I definitely lean towards Toddy and it seems I’m not alone – one commenter on YouTube put it this way: Eu adoro Toddy! Acho o Nescau muito sem graça, puro açucar e nada de chocolate! [I love Toddy! I reckon that Nescau is really awful – all sugar and no chocolate!]

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As I said, I’m no chocolate milk expert, but I can say in terms of brand identity, Toddy wins hands down! Nescau has no brand character other than a rather dull lightning flash – compare that to Toddynho which has a happy chocolate cube man and Toddy which has a couple of crazy cows with attitude! You want proof of their crazy cow attitude? How about this?

 

Ah-lek-lek-lek

Ah! Lek lek lek lek lek!

 

I know some of you are going to hate me for this, but for those that don’t know, the above picture refers to this little baile funk gem. Could this be even worse than Tchu Tcha Tcha? Enjoy…

 

 

28 replies
  1. The Gritty Poet
    The Gritty Poet says:

    Man is the whole fabricated dispute involving Nestlé vs breast milk still happening? It sounds like something people from Oxfam would devise. I am the real victim here since I have lost the favors of many a hot euro-hippie chick for standng up for Nestlé’s right to market their product without being demonized.

    Reply
  2. Marcos
    Marcos says:

    I like Toddy very much, I’m talking about the chocolate powder not the ready-made drink. I also think that Nescau is fine but I don’t like funk music LOL. I’ve been hearing this lek,lek,lek wherever I go.I think it’s hight time people stopped playing this funk. Thanks.

    Reply
    • tomlemes
      tomlemes says:

      Hey Marcos – I have to say that I found Toddynho a bit too sweet and creamy for my liking. Toddy was pretty good though. As for Funk music, I have tried to like it but I think I have to admit that I don’t really. Music shouldn’t be this annoying should it?

      Reply
      • Marcos
        Marcos says:

        You’re right. Hey Tom. Have you ever tried Ovomaltine? It was developed in Switzerland. It’s made with malt extract. It’s like a chocolate powder. It’s very good indeed.

        Reply
        • tomlemes
          tomlemes says:

          I know the stuff! Back in England we call it Ovaltine and there is another version called Horlicks. They are both very malty and are supposed to be a good drink to have before bed to make you sleepy! 🙂

          Reply
  3. Bonce
    Bonce says:

    Finally caved and bought myself a toddynho today. Sickeningly sweet. Disgustingly delicious.
    Also you’re so right about Nestlé, pure evil.
    x

    Reply
  4. Guy From England
    Guy From England says:

    I bought a maçã, banana e morango flavour toddynho a few days back! I’m yet to try it but I’ll let you know how the non-chocolate toddynho goes.

    And Nescau is just Brazilian Nesquik right? I grew up on nesquik milkshake powder.

    Reply
    • tomlemes
      tomlemes says:

      Woah! Fruity Toddynho?! But not chocolate and fruit drink right? That would be weird I think…

      Ah yes, I remember Nesquick and the Nesquick bunny. My mum would never buy it, so I was forced to try to mix bitter cocoa powder with sugar and then attempt to dissolve the mixture in milk. It never worked very well 🙁

      Reply
      • Guy From England
        Guy From England says:

        I tried that myself! You’re right though, it wasn’t good.

        So I just tried the Toddynho. It’s just apple, banana and strawberry, no chocolate. And actually, it’s quite tasty!

        Reply
  5. Tom
    Tom says:

    I want to buy some liquid Toddynho drink… not the powder mix. Can anyone please tell me where/how I can get some?

    Thank you!

    Reply
        • tomlemes
          tomlemes says:

          Hmmm, I’ve never heard of anyone importing the stuff to the US, but I wouldn’t rule it out completely. Have you been to Brazil before? I’m thinking that once you’ve tasted Toddynho you can probably find something very similar in the US – just got to do enough sampling! 😉

          Reply
          • Tom
            Tom says:

            Hi again,

            My dad was in the US Army during World War II and it was given to the soldiers. After the war he got it for us kids. They also had it at the outdoor movie theaters. I’ve been looking for it for 60 years now. I do have the powder mix, but it has an extra taste in it: I think from the soy. Do you know if the liquid Toddynho has soy?

            There are several of us in the US looking for the liquid Toddy/Toddynho. Any help you can provide that would enable us to get some would be appreciated by a lot of people.

            Thanks again,
            Tom

          • tomlemes
            tomlemes says:

            Tom – a friend says they stock it at Terra Nossa Center Market, MA. Do you know anyone near there that could help you?

  6. Tom
    Tom says:

    Greetings Tom ~

    I just received my liquid Toddynho in the mail… drank one… and I was right back in 1954!!! I can’t thank you enough for your help with putting the word out and making a 60 year quest come to pass!!!

    Tom

    Reply
    • tomlemes
      tomlemes says:

      Hi Tom – that has made my day – such a nice story! 😀 I’m so pleased to hear that you succeeded and that the end result was not a disappointment. I may even buy a Toddynho myself in your honour!

      Reply
  7. Joel
    Joel says:

    Hi, I am trying to buy some Todinho for my Brazilian wife in the UK, any idea where I might be able to get some?

    Thank you!!

    Joel

    Reply
    • tomlemes
      tomlemes says:

      Hi Joel,

      There is this on-line store (also with a branch in London) which lists quite a few Brazilian products. They don’t seem to list Toddynho, but could be worth contacting them to see if they can get it. Also, here is a list of Brazilian food suppliers in London. Could be worth calling a few of those numbers. Good luck! 🙂

      Reply

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