Heavenly Cookies For Racers: God Creates the Milano

things got too sticky in the stack within the pack

And on the fourth day at the end of the ninth race God ended his work which he had made; and he rested…from all his work which he had made, then he created Milano®.*

In truer form, lore has it that the Milano® started off with a Pepperidge Farm’s original, the Naples®: a single vanilla wafer cookie topped with dark chocolate filling. Problem was, things got too sticky in the stack within the pack so the company added a topper. Prego—what boat crew, whether racer or cruiser, has not passed ‘round the bag of Milanos?

Milano cookies are a trademarked dessert manufactured by Pepperidge Farm as part of their collection of "European" cookies. They were originally and primarily marketed towards elders, adults, teens, children and infants as an indulgence food. Early on, despite focus group respondents’ loyal dedication to the snack, sales hardly reflected consumer passion for the product. One corporate official remarked, "We have some of the most recognized and least purchased products in the world." Meeting the marketing challenge was Saatchi & Saatchi NY, an agency tasked with switching things up a bit, repositioning and creating a winning campaign. The objective was to reach the target audience (women aged 35 plus) and encourage them to take a little indulgence. A new tagline, "A Treasure Meant to be Discovered,” was launched with an initial 30-second advert spot that follows a busy mom who has finally found a few moments of peace and quiet. Thing is, someone’s discovered her secret hideaway with its stash of Milanos.

Indulgences for Every Palette
Every sailor worth his or her salt has either tackled a Milano, or maybe something from the Pepperidge Farm Chunk Cookies line such as the “Sausalito.” A most popular model Milano is the Milk Chocolate, but have you tried the Double Dark Chocolate? What about the Mint or Mocha version? Did you know there’s also been Raspberry Chocolate and Orange Chocolate? The company has marketed so many flavors it takes a list to illustrate things. Remember that each filling listed is either all chocolate or accompanied by a layer of chocolate:

A tub 'o Milanos for the crew. Is it water-tight?

A tub 'o Milanos for the crew. Is it water-tight?

  • Milk Chocolate
  • Double Dark Chocolate
  • Mocha Chocolate
  • Mint
  • Raspberry
  • Strawberry
  • Orange
  • Banana
  • Pumpkin Spice (and you thought the world did not need another pumpkin spice)
  • Dulce De Leche
  • Key Lime
  • Salted Carmel
  • Lemon
  • Candy Cane

Because one can never get too much of a good thing, Pepperidge Farm took the lid off things with the Milano Slice: a single side of the act topped with pretzel crumbles. Another wacky offshoot seems to be the Milano Melts Vanilla Crème—looks to be more of a filled, opposed to sandwiched between, crème taste treat. Heck, in 2012 the company even put design to cakery with its Milano Chocolate Buttercream and Crumbled Cookies cake.


6-Pack, 12-Pack, 24-Pack License
For a basic J/70 or Melges crew, you’d do well with nicely rationed individual packages. Consider the tub—not sure if it’s watertight—but inside are 20 2-packs that will set you back less than $7 and keep the crew hopped up on sugar. Maxi yacht crews will need more indulgence, so unroll three $20s and get yourself a case ‘o Milanos; that’s 24 packages. For other size boats sandwiched in between, keep crews on their toes by rotating through all flavor packs during race season. In San Francisco, we’ve moved from the Pumpkin Spice and now it’s all about the Candy Cane Milano.

* With acknowledgement from the King James Bible, which states:
"And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made."