- The Plate
The History of Vanilla
There’s a little waffling here: one source claims that actually it’s Democrats who prefer vanilla, while Republicans go for chocolate; and a Baskin-Robbins poll found that there’s a substantial contingent in the Southwest that shuns both in favor of mint chocolate chip. On the other hand, the International Ice Cream Association, which should know, puts vanilla at the top of the charts as first choice of 29 percent of ice-cream eaters, feebly followed by chocolate (8.9 percent), butter pecan (5.3 percent), and strawberry (5.3 percent).
Given our passion for vanilla, it seems peculiar that “plain vanilla” is the going synonym for anything basic, bland, or blah. A plain-vanilla wardrobe lacks pizzazz; plain-vanilla technologies lack bells and whistles; plain-vanilla automobiles miss out