PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WPRI) — Nothing beats hearing the sound of an ice cream truck coming down the street on a hot summer day.
Alex Arteaga, owner of Palagis Ice Cream, knows that feeling all too well.
“That impactful moment when we pull up on a street, especially when you’re not expecting it, it’s very thrilling to a lot of people,” Arteaga said.
But that excitement will soon turn into disappointment for those who love the Choco Taco.
Klondike made the “tough decision” to discontinue the taco-inspired dessert earlier this week.
The ice cream manufacturer said it plans to focus its efforts on its best sellers, including its signature Klondike bar.
But Klondike’s reasoning did nothing to quell the heartbreak of Choco Taco devotees across the country.
Arteaga said the discontinuation the Choco Taco is puzzling to him.
“There have been things that have been discontinued [before], but nothing as dramatic as the Choco Taco,” he explained. “It’s become a classic really, just like the ice cream sandwich.”
While it may not be Klondike’s, Arteaga said the Choco Taco is one of their best sellers.
“The Choco Taco is still strong,” he said. “If it isn’t broken, why fix it?”
Arteaga tells 12 News he has customers who, without fail, will order the same summer treats every time he visits their neighborhood.
“When we’re out, we see a lot of the same people very single day,” he said. “The people who like the Choco Taco … they’re going to be devastated, because some people get the same thing over and over again.”
Arteaga said the Choco Taco has been around since the 1980s and at one time was the most expensive treat on the menu at $1.50 apiece.
The Choco Taco now costs nearly $4. While it’s far from the most expensive item on their menu right now, Arteaga expects it will soon become a hot commodity.
When asked how many Choco Tacos he has left, Arteaga said not much.
“It was a surprise to all of us,” he said. “Within the next couple of days, they’ll probably be gone.”
Arteaga plans to stock up on the Choco Taco if there is an opportunity to do so.
“We’ll make it last as long as we can,” Arteaga said.
There was speculation that the discontinuation of the Choco Taco was a publicity stunt, but Klondike squashed that theory in a social media post Thursday.
Since Klondike’s announcement, the Choco Taco has received dozens of online reviews urging the company to reconsider its decision.
The company responded stating that it has heard the message “loud and clear” and is working hard to figure out a way to bring it back in the future.