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Jane Parker Fruit Cakes

| November 15, 2017 | 62 Comments

Jane Parker Fruit Cakes make a return in 2017.
Review: Classic and Dark Jane Parker Fruit Cakes make their return in 2017. We’ll try them both and share our results with you as we celebrate the return of these former A&P bakery classics. Made from the original recipe, and now made in the USA.

 

Jane Parker Fruit Cakes, slider.
Jane Parker Fruit Cakes are back.

 

Jane Parker Fruit Cakes, logos.

Chances are, not too many years back, there was an A&P store in your home town.

A&P, also known as the Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company, was as well known and popular then as Walmart stores are today.

Actually, they were a great influence on the development of Walmart stores as we know them today. A&P changed the way folks shopped for groceries by becoming the community grocer that offered almost all of your grocery needs in one location.

Before them, you would buy canned goods at one store, meats from a local butcher, bread and cakes from a local baker, fresh produce and fruits from yet another store. You actually visited separate locations to fulfill your grocery needs. Imagine that.

From 1915 to 1975, A&P was the largest grocery retailer in the United States. In 1930, they were the worlds largest retailer with over 16,000 stores. However, they began to decline in the early 1950’s and the last few remaining stores were either sold or closed by the end of 2015.

A&P was the originator of the private label products as we know them today. They bought up bakeries, roasters and other large companies to produce their own private brand of products that were then sold in all of their own stores.

Names such as Eight O’Clock Coffee, Quaker Maid, Ann Page, Our Own Tea, Grandmother’s, Marvel and Jane Parker became household favorites around the country.

Jane Parker Fruit Cakes, classic and dark.
Jane Parker was one of the bakery items that A&P produced and became well known for their Classic and Dark brands of Fruit Cake.

At one time, A&P operated 37 of their own bakery plants and became America’s largest baker. However, the bakery division was closed during company restructuring during 1981-1982.

Jane Parker Fruit Cakes were later produced in Canada, and were still made available in the remaining stores and eventually available for order online up until around 2014-2015.

Following the final closing and sale of the remaining stores, the Jane Parker Fruit Cakes were no longer made and available. A staple of the American families holiday tradition were thought to be gone for good.

 


This ad, from around 1940, advertises the famous brand of Jane Parker Fruit Cakes. Note the price of $1.75 for a 5lb cake. Now we know why they call those the “good old days.” Smile.

“Don’t wait until Christmas…….order your Jane Parker Fruit Cake today. Top the year with a really festive holiday treat. Your A&P Bakers present Jane Parker Fruit Cake…… a genuine masterpiece of the baking art. And… good news to everyone it’s price is a mere fraction of what you would expect to pay for a top quality Fruit Cake made of such choice quality ingredients as this one is.” says the ad.

 

Jane Parker Fruit Cake, Elvin and family.
This is my older brother and his family from way back when. Smile.

My brother worked for our local A&P stores from 1960 to 1973. He was promoted to Produce Manager shortly after going to work for them, then pulled a few years in the Army.

After the Army, he returned to A&P and became a store Manager around 1969 working their store in the Siler City, North Carolina area from 1969 until he left in 1973.

On a side note, Francis Bavier who played Aunt Bee on the Andy Griffith Show during it’s years on television, moved to Siler City after the show ended and shopped his store on occasion. But, that’s a story for another time.

My brother remembers the Jane Parker Fruit Cakes very well.

He also remembers another A&P bakery favorite known as the Spanish Bar Cake.

 

Spanish Bar Cake
After hearing him talk so fondly about the Spanish Bar Cake, I attempted to make something similar for him a few years back. I’ve posted that recipe here on Taste of Southern.

He was very kind in telling me the cake was pretty good, but that it wasn’t “exactly” the Spanish Bar Cake he remembered from his years at A&P. I tried though, and I have a reason for mentioning it here.

 

It was the Spanish Bar Cake recipe that caught the attention of Chris Ronacher.

Chris sent me an email saying that he and his brother had just recently purchased the domain, trademarks, rights and recipes of the Jane Parker brand at an auction of the remaining A&P properties.

Chris and his brother Alex from New York, have started producing both of the famous Jane Parker Fruit Cakes – using the ORIGINAL RECIPE – and now have them available for order online.

In years past, the brothers had bought the cakes in bulk to sell on their Online Candy Shop .

When the cakes were no longer being made, and the rights and recipes were placed up for auction, the Ronacher brothers purchased them so they could bring the brand back to life.

Chris contacted me via email to tell me this news. I was both surprised and delighted to hear from him.

That’s how I came to learn that the Jane Parker Fruit Cakes… ARE BACK.

 

Jane Parker Fruit Cakes make a return in 2017.
Chris offered to send me the two cakes you see pictured here.

One is the Classic Fruit Cake (left) and the other is the Dark Fruit Cake (right)

These are the 16oz. cakes. They also offer the 32oz, 48oz, and 72oz. versions. Some are even available in special holiday tins that will make perfect gifts for Christmas for anyone that might have enjoyed these Fruit Cakes in years past.

 

Jane Parker.com
Click this photo to visit the JaneParker.com website and to place an order.

 

Jane Parker Fruit Cakes, the Classic.
Classic Jane Parker Fruit Cake

This is the Classic cake. As they advertise and as you can clearly see, the cakes have “Over 2/3 Fruit & Nuts.” The cake is filled with Raisins, Glace Red Cherries, Glace Pineapple, Orange Peel, and lots of Pecans.

Did I mention the cakes are now being made here in the USA?

I liked the taste of this cake. It was a good mixture of cake to nuts and fruits. I think fruit cakes in general get a bad rap because they seem to have an old dry cake mixture with lots of gummy candied fruit pieces. Not the case with this Jane Parker Classic.

The cakes tasted very fresh and were nice and moist in my opinion. Chris told me they had just received their 2017 cakes a few days before he contacted me, so that’s pretty fresh.

 

Jane Parker Fruit Cakes, classic closeup.
Here’s a little closer look at all the goodness of the Classic.

 

Jane Parker Fruit Cakes, dark.
This is the Dark Fruit Cake.

With all the ingredients that I mentioned above, this Dark Cake also contains Brown Sugar and Molasses which gives it the dark texture and taste.

Upon first trying the cakes, I liked the Dark Fruit Cake best. This one had more of a nostalgic and old fashioned taste to me I think. I’m sure that’s because of my growing up with Molasses being on the kitchen table on a regular basis.

Mama baked her Buttermilk Biscuits often, which we’d use our finger to punch a hole in the side so we could drizzle in some Molasses.  The taste brings back memories for me.

 

Jane Parker Fruit Cakes, dark closeup.
Here’s a closer look at the Jane Parker Dark Fruit Cake.

Look at that layer of Pecans on the top of the cake. Looks good doesn’t it?

It’s no wonder they call these “America’s Favorite.” One can only wonder how many were sold over the years at all those A&P stores across the country.

I’m sure either you, your parents, and probably your grandparents had one about every Christmas. It was a family tradition, and it will become a family tradition once again thanks to Chris and Alex Ronacher bringing it back.

 

Jane Parker Fruit Cakes, plate.
I’m pretty sure you can think of someone that would love to see an Original Jane Parker Fruit Cake under their tree this holiday season. By “original” I’m referring to the fact that these are made using the Original recipe that they were first made with. How cool is that?

My brother told me he fondly remembers stacking huge displays of these fruit cakes at the end of an aisle when he worked for A&P. He said just about everybody bought a Jane Parker Fruit Cake for the holidays. According to him, A&P had lots of excellent products.

He told me that the Southern Division of A&P Stores consisted of 350 stores with headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina during the years that he worked for them. They had a bakery in the Charlotte area as well.

Older brother went on to have several stores of his own after his time with A&P. He spent about 50 years in the grocery business and retired about 10 years ago.

I’ve been blessed to hear many of his stories about those days on many of the road trips we’ve been on together over the past five years or so.

What did he think about these cakes?

“Excellent,” was his response when I asked him. He said he was very pleased with the taste of both of the cakes and with their quality.”

I just couldn’t pin him down as whether he preferred the Classic or the Dark one the best.

Guess that means I’ll need to buy him one of each for Christmas. Smile.

Personally, I think it’s really great that someone has gone to the work and the expense to bring these great flavors of the past to a new generation. I wish the Ronacher brothers all the best.

I would also like to say Thank You to Chris for finding us here on Taste of Southern, for reaching out to us, and for sharing your cakes with me and my brother.

I’d be more than happy to suggest and recommend them to anyone.

I appreciate your trust in my honest evaluation of your products and hope we can work together again.

Be sure to visit www.JaneParker.com and get your order in early. Please note that as of this writing, shipping is included in the price listed on their website.

Thanks for listening, Merry Christmas.

 


 

Your Comments:  Do you remember A&P Stores and the Jane Parker Fruit Cakes? I’d love to hear your memories of either… or both. Please take a moment to share them with our readers.

It will only take a minute or two for you to leave your comments in the section below.

Just remember, all comments are moderated.  That just means that I personally read each and everyone before they are approved for viewing on our family friendly website. Thank you in advance for sharing.

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Be Blessed!!!
Steve

..

Full Disclosure: I received two of the Jane Parker Fruit Cakes for review. All the comments and opinions listed here are my own.

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Category: Desserts, Reviews-News

About the Author ()

Award Winning Food Preservationist, Fisherman, Online Contributor to Our State Magazine Newsletter.

Comments (62)

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  1. Nancy says:

    There were many A&Ps where I grew up in Massachusetts. For many years, my mother bought a classic Jane Parker fruitcake for Christmas. My siblings and I loved the glace cherries the best. I haven’t had that fruitcake for over 40 years now and have ordered one in order to relive a childhood memory. Other childhood memories are S&H green stamps and the premiums that gas stations gave away like drinking glasses or a Sinclair dinosaur soap.

  2. Jack says:

    Wow…what a trip down memory lane! I’m an Atlanta native for the past 75 years, and have absolutely enjoyed this article…thank you.
    Do I remember A&P grocery stores…you bet’ chum Red Rider. I spent many an enjoyable summer and other vacation days working as a bag-boy and stock boy. Over the years, my mom, my wife, and several aunts, all shopped at one their stores over the years. They all agreed that A&P enjoyed a special reputation, like no other, of providing friendliness, quality products, value, cleanliness, fresh bakery goods and S&H Green Stamps (or Top Value; I can’t recall)! One other thing that I recall was the 8 O’clock Coffee display and coffee grinder…no one else offered that aroma and excitement!
    I particularly remember helping assemble the Jane Parker Fruit Cake display every year just before Thanksgiving, but about two weeks before Christmas, it got a really special look to it. It took on the look of a really professional display…there must have been over 500 boxed and canned fruit cakes, and it was always kept stocked and looking great by a proud produce employee…that person treated their job as an honor.
    But none of these words could ever surpass the pure joy, flavor, freshness and quality of a Jane Parker Fruit Cake…just the right blend of fruit and nuts. Not even the Benson brand or the famous Claxton brand, could hold a candle. I am so happy to hear of the comeback of this part of my Seasonal memories…I only regret that neither my mom, my wife, nor my aunts are hear to enjoy also.

    Jack

  3. My Grandfather, Father, Brother in law and Grandfather in law all worked at A & P Tea Company in Jacksonville, Florida. They worked at the bakery on Beaver Street. My Dad was a machinist. A & P was a wonderful grocery store. I am so glad to see the Jane Parker fruitcakes are back. They are the best!

  4. Gary Strader says:

    I remember A & P very well. I remember asking my Mom on day as we were getting out of our car to go grocery shopping. We went to the A & P store in Winston – Salem ,NC up until it closed. The A & P she told me stood for The Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company, and shortened to simply A & P .

    I also remember the Jane Parker Fruit Cakes as Mom and Dad were always getting them at Christmas Time. The Eight O’Clock Coffee was another one that I remember as they would grind it up and put it back into the foil bag the beans came in. As a kid I thought that was neat, and I loved the smell of the fresh roast and ground coffee.

  5. Tina W. says:

    The closest A&P to us was in Thomasville NC and I remember making the trip there around the holidays just for the Jane Parker fruitcake! That was the only fruitcake my father would eat and we would drive 30 miles to get one!

  6. Sherry Urena says:

    I don’t remember the fruit cakes as my mother always made her own at the holidays. But I do remember A&P and what a wonderful grocery store it was. It was interesting to read about it’s history. Thank you. 🙂

  7. Beverly greenslade says:

    I remember A&P very well. When I was in my young years we shopped every week at the A&P. The store was just around the corrnor in West Phila Pa. Also remember pulling the shopping cart empty to the store with my Mom & Grand Mother, but one of them pulled it home full of good things to cook. I was always allowed to help grind the 8 O clock coffee at the end of the check out counter. And may I remind you the check out people had to ring in the price on the cash register each idem at a time not just scan it across a sensor. And they could count the change that was returned to you by doing so in there head. It was always a good time to go to the A & P store. I loved one cookie don’t remember the name but it had a little red type jelly in the center I believe it was made by Jane Parker. Boy would like to getting my hands on them again. Even if I make home made cookies this time of year. Also was the first time around 10-12 I was allowed to go shopping with a list from my Mom all by myself. What a grown up thing I could do. Remember playing when I grow up & have a family with my girlfriend I will buy everything I want at the store. Didn’t know much about income & buying only what was needed. Really was the good old days. I don’t remember eating the Furit Cake because Mom & Grandmom did so much baking them seleves & pretty sure it was not in the budget. Back then you did a lot of your own baking. I shopped at the A& P till they where bought out by a different name. I think called Supper Fresh and tthink the employees of A & P bought up. Stilled carred the Jane Parker, 8 O Clock coffee and many of the items A & P carried.
    thanks for a good memory down the lane.
    PS, I shopped the Jane Parker name at Supper Fresh until they closed down about 20 + years ago with my son.
    Blessing
    BG

  8. Sandra Lowry says:

    Wow! You are really bringing back wonderful memories. I didn’t work for A&P but for one of their competitors, Colonial Stores/Big Star from 1971 to their closing in my area in 1982. Great times! Within a 2 block radius was A&P, Colonial and Safeway. We all ran into each other making the bank deposits in the same area. As a single parent of two girls, I made a good living, worked with great people and we had fabulous customers. Thank you to the Ronacher brothers for bringing these back! I will be ordering one of each. I love fruitcake!

  9. Teresa Young says:

    We had an A&P in a small town in Southern Illinois. Now enjoy Eight O’Clock Coffee, the Original Decaf. Tastes as good as regular coffee, unlike most decaf. Did not know it was an A&P brand. Do not remember the fruit cakes. THANKS for all the recipes!

  10. Marilyn says:

    Hi, I very much remember A&P, my mom always shopped there and in the first years of my marriage, when they were still around, I shopped there too. Yes, the fruit cakes and the spanish bar cakes were delicious. We always bought at least one every year, sometimes more than one. And my husband and I still enjoy 8’Oclock coffee, which used to only be available through A&P. My older brother was a part time bag boy there for a few years before going in the Navy. Really miss the store and the cakes, both fruit and spanish bar. I saw your recipe for the latter on Taste of Southern, but haven’t tried to make it yet.

    Have a great Thanksgiving.

  11. Martha V. says:

    I loved shopping at the A&P as a child. We lived in the country and it was such a special treat to get groceries there. I remember the “grind your own coffee beans” with the A&P coffee and I especially loved the Spanish Bar Cake. Thanks Steve.

  12. I remember the A&P stores but we never were lucky enough to buy the cake, but they sure look tasty. Good to hear business moving back to USA. HAPPY HOLIDAYS to you Steve. Love your news letters.

  13. Charlotte says:

    Sadly, I don’t recall A&P Stores in Central Florida. But those fruitcakes look amazing. Mama always made fruitcakes for the holidays. I remember the aroma wafted throughout the house when she baked.

  14. Randy says:

    As with many of your post and road trips, this brings back good memories. As a child fruit cake was one of my favorite desserts.. Not too fond of the dark, but love the light fruit cake..

    Congratulations on your blue ribbons at the Fair.. You’ve definitely earned bragging rights!

  15. PSteve says:

    What a glorious surpirse to find Jane Parker Fruit Cakes!!!
    the name alone brings back so many memories! And A&P
    of course bring back so many more wonderful memories
    from my very young childhood!
    With regards to the cakes, mom always got the round one.
    usually the lighter, but one year after my badgering, she
    yielded and got the dark. it was tasty, and perhaps I was
    just accustomed to the light one, but I did prefer the light one.

    I remember mom buying the Eight O’Clock coffee. One of
    the biggest thrills of my young life was when mom finally
    allowed me to feed the beans into the grinder for her! Gosh!
    What a simple, but delightful pleasure that was for me!

    I could go on and on, but, I will have mercy on any
    readers, as these are really highly individualistic memories.

    After sending this, I will go to their website. For years, I
    have been ordering fruit cakes for my mother from a competitor in
    Texas.
    Mom will be (God willing) 92 this Christmas. I am sure she will
    be amazed to find a Jane Parker cake in front of her.

    If i never enjoy another article from your site (which seems impossible.
    I now live in the Philippines and rely rather heavily on your site), this
    one article alone has been worth discovering your site some time back.

    Keep up the good work and Thank God for Southern Cooking and Hospitality!

    very sincerely…

  16. JANNA PERKINS says:

    My grandparents shopped A & P. I remember, how they luved that store. However, I do not recall the fuitcakes…

  17. Audrey Kilgore says:

    Really enjoyed your article. I used to go with my Daddy to A&P. We lived in Toledo, OH and there was a store on the east side. Loved their fruitcake. Mama loved the glazed donuts. They were 39 cents a dozen in the 1950s!
    Thanks to the fellows who are bringing some favorite foods back. I went to their website and ordered an original fruitcake.
    Best wishes and success to them.

  18. GARY WOOD says:

    I’M 76 YEARS OLD AND I REMEMBER A&P VERY WELL. MOM AND DAD WENT EVERY FRIDAY EVENING FOR GROCERY’S. I DON’T KNOW WHEN THEY CLOSED.

    GARY WOOD

    REALLY ENJOY YOUR RECIPES AND MONDAY LETTERS!!

  19. Linda Smith says:

    I remember going to the A&P grocery with my Mother. Since my Mother always made a large fruitcake each Christmas, we never bought one at A&P.

    I would like to try one of A&P’s dark fruitcake since it reminds me of my Mother’s.

  20. libby rouse says:

    Oh my goodness does this fruitcake bring many happy memories! A&P was where my Mama always shopped when I was growing up, and Jane Parker Fruitcake, is why I always want a fruitcake, but they do not measure up to this one I grew up with. Thanks Steve, for sending the information! Have a blessed Thanksgiving!

  21. Gran says:

    Seeing this picture brought back so many memories! When fall of the year rolled around I knew it would not be long until I would begin to see displays of those delicious fruitcakes in the A&P stores, which is where I did my grocery shopping. The Jane Psrker Fruitcake was my favorite brand of fruitcake. I remember it had more nuts in it than other brands I had tried. Some of our favorite times were sitting down with a slice of this delicious fruitcake and a cup of 8 o’clock coffee.
    Thank You,
    Gran

  22. Sarah McKim says:

    I do not remember A&P or thieir fruitcakes, however throughout my life I have heard about them often. My mom and dad use to buy them at the A&P after they got married and LOVED them. Just last year I was searching online to try to find if anyone sold them. I will definitely be ordering one for my mom, for old times sake.

  23. I have so many memories of both. As a kid going to A & P with my Mom for weekly grocery shopping. When I was with her I always got to pick out some kind of fruit that I wanted and would have the honor to bring it home to snack on all week. As far as the Jane Parker fruitcakes, My Mom and I liked the classic but my Dad liked the dark so we usually got two. My Mom and Dad always had theirs with coffee after dinner and I usually had mine with milk. Yumm. Thanks for making me smile.

  24. Kathleen says:

    I do remember the A&P stores but its been maybe 30 or 40 years ago. I think its sad but at least we still have piggly wiggly.
    🙂

  25. Kathy says:

    Steve,
    I do not remember the fruit cakes but I may try one of each.

    KathyK2WH

  26. Clara Smith says:

    When I was little, Daddy would shop A&P. He didn’t like fruit cake so he never bought one, but he loved the Spanish Bar Cake. Unlike my parents I love fruit cake. I have tried to make the Spanish Bar Cake but have not been able to make one that tastes like I remember. Clara

  27. Karen Miller says:

    The trip to the A&P was the highlight of this farm girl’s week. I loved wandering all the aisles seeing all the wonderful food. One of my favorite memories was the smell of the freshly ground coffee my folks ground at the store. Supper was always bologna sandwiches when we got home. Around Christmas, my Mom would always buy the Jane Parker fruit cake. I like fruit cake any way it’s served; sliced or sliced and toasted. What wonderful memories this brings back to me.

  28. Linda S Hayes says:

    I married a man in 1956 that was employed with A&P until he retired in 1981. I never shopped in any other grocery store during this time. He was a butcher and worked at every store in Durham, N. C. He spent the last few years as Meat Market Manager on Broad Street. Today it is now home to Whole Foods. We always used Eight O’clock coffee and Ann Page Products. We loved the Jane Parker fruit cakes. At that time they only had one kind that I remember.

  29. Elizabeth says:

    Sure, I remember the A&P. My brother worked there in the 70s and Mama shopped there often. However, I don’t remember the Jane Parker fruit cakes. I might just have to go to their website and see about the yummy-looking Dark Fruit Cake. I will also be visiting the Online Candy Store – just in time for the holidays. Thanks:)

  30. Dolores Fowler says:

    Hi Steve! I don’t remember A&P Stores. I don’t know if there were very many near us in East Los Angeles where I grew up. My husband said there was one in downtown Indio, Calif. He grew up on a ranch that his step-dad managed, but they rarely went shopping downtown except for Christmas when they went to JCPenney. His mother worked at Owen’s Market near them where she bought all her groceries. It was a neighborhood grocery store. My Mom made fruitcakes at Christmas time for us and for gifts. I love fruitcakes. Nobody else that I know does though. Such a shame. I have fond memories of those cakes and my Mom. I miss her dearly. She just passed away in Jan of last year. Thanks for the memories.

  31. I wish I could say I remember a lot about A&P. They were not where I lived when I was an adult. I do remember that it was where my Grandmother shopped when I was growing up. The fruit cake looks very good. The dark one looks so good and the original one looks like it has many more nuts. Thank you for sharing

  32. David Williams says:

    I remember the A&P stores (The Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company) in my home town of Waco, Texas. If you lived in the part of town where one was located you visited often. Unfortunately, in my part of town another old store chain was present, so I did not get to frequent an A&P when my mother did the grocery shopping. In those days grocery stores were much smaller with some neighborhoods still being served by mom and pop stores. Most people did not drive across town and shop at multiple stores for groceries back then like they do now due to price, brand loyalty, or more desireable produce. The oldest operating store in the company at the time, located in New Orleans on Burbon Street, was sold in 2006 or 2007. The company ceased to exist in November 2016 ending a 156 year history. I drink Eight O’Clock Coffee which was an A&P original store brand as was the Jane Parker line of baked goods. I do not recall the Jane Parker fruitcakes as fruitcakes were homemade when I was growing up then surplanted by the awesome Collin Street Bakery (Corsicana, Texas) fruitcakes as they became more readily available. Also, the ladies in my family got older and less inclined to bake from scratch. I did reverse engineer the Corsicana fruitcake based on bits of information they provided in the media at various times including some percentages, however, I am not interested in doing that much work myself (making candied citrus peel, etc.) just for me not to mention the calories.

  33. Rick Fuchs says:

    I don’t remember the fruit cake. The Spanish bar cake was great but I really remember the smell of the coffee beans being ground at the checkout lane. Great time. Around 1956.

  34. Leigh Anne Ellis says:

    I remember the A&P stores very well! My father was with them for over 40 years,starting out as a bag boy at age 11, and working up to store manager.
    Jane Parker fruitcakes were a holiday staple at our house for years. My sister found them online a couple of years ago and ordered one for Christmas dinner. What a treat and walk down memory lane!

  35. James A Kurdziel says:

    had a&p in west point loved the fruit cakes & bar and always enjoy your e mails

  36. Alicia L Day says:

    I do remember the A&P stores but not the fruit cakes. My mom loves fruit cake, so I may order her one of these for Christmas. Thanks.

  37. Joyce Moore says:

    I remember the A&P Stores. My mother and I shopped there. Mother really liked there coffee.

  38. Lori D. says:

    Remember shopping at A&P it was the closest store to us. Loved their Spanish bar cakes.

  39. Terry McGoron says:

    I remember A&P but not their fruitcake. I grew up in Houston, Tx in the 50’s and 60’s. I always liked fruitcake, so I probably ate A&P brand. Now I buy mail order cakes from Collin Street Bakery in Corsicana, Tx. Their cakes are so good.

  40. Maggie says:

    Oh how I wish my Dad was still with us so I could buy him one of these fruitcakes! He used to say there was nothing like a slice with a cup of coffee.
    I remember the huge stacks of fruitcakes at A&P at Christmas time! Maybe they just seemed huge since I was much smaller then? Thanks for letting us know they’re making these again.

  41. Katie Phelps says:

    I tried to enter my comment on how growing up how we loved Jane Parker fruit cakes, & always visiting the A & P, but after several attempts, got errors,when tried to submit.Hope this works.So glad they have a website now.

  42. Nancy Valrance says:

    Before I scrolled down reading this review, I was thinking that in addition to the Jane Parker fruitcakes, I very fondly remember the spice bar cake. Ate many of those as a child! Thanks for the trip down memory lane!

  43. Jim Hall says:

    I remember A&P was one of the 1st grocery stores that had a “double-coupon” day each week. I was in my 1st job out of college and used to shop on those magic days and could make my meager income support nicer meals!
    My Mom used to make a fruitcake she called “grandma’s fruitcake” I can’t find a recipe anywhere. It was more of a white pound cake w/ the dried fruit and some black walnuts mixed in the batter. Any chance you’ve seen that sort of cake in your social gatherings or family cookbooks?
    Thanks
    Jim

  44. Charlie Moore says:

    Well I tried again, but it times out before you can enter rhe new CAPTCH…very frustrating. .Glad you found a website forJane Parker I would send you my oments if the system would let me.thawhen

  45. John Lapitsky says:

    When I was a child my mother used to let me grind the eight O’clock coffee in the store.

  46. Kathryn Ransom says:

    The first grocery store I ever remember my Mother taking me to…. was an A & P store in Lumberton, NC. Yes, and we did have the Jane Parker Fruit Cakes which my Mother would buy for Christmas. As a child, I, like a lot of other children I suppose didn’t like fruitcake but remember my Mother encouraging us to try “some more of it” anyway. I now love fruitcake as an adult and usually buy as least one for the family for Christmas to share. Imagine my surprise and pleasant nostalgic feelings, when I saw this on the old A & P and Jane Parker fruit cakes !! What a wonderful blessed memory !! Now, let me go and order !! Smile !!

  47. Charlie Moore says:

    Stev, This stinks….by the time you type e comments, the CAPTCHA changesand when you go bac to update it your comments are gone…Fix this

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Charlie, I’m sorry you had problems. I tried to send you a personal email but that came back as undelivered to the address that I had for you. This comment did get through, so I hope you’ll try again and share your memories. I appreciate your comments and hope you’ll visit with us often. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  48. Angela James says:

    Truly I’ve never had fruit cake.

  49. Brad Corn says:

    We had an A&P grocery store I remember their coffee and they had an old time hand crank coffee grinder. Don’t remember the fruit cakes. It was the only grocery store in town until Winn Dixie moved in.

  50. Page Morden says:

    I remember the A & P Stores, mainly my youngest sister’s name is
    Ann and with mine being Page, lots of people called us “Ann & Page” sometimes I thought that was because they couldn’t remember which one we were. Don’t remember the fruit cakes as well, but after seeing pictures liked the Classic best. The Dark was just too dark for me.

    Best wishes for a wonderful week and safe travels.

  51. LaTonya Copeland says:

    Steve.. I remember A&P shopping with my grandparents, but Never have tried Fruit Cake of any brand…

  52. Shelly McManus says:

    I remember the A&P Grocery stores but not the Fruit Cakes !!!
    Thank you !!!
    Sincerely,
    Shelly McManus

  53. Paula Schubert says:

    I remember the A&P name but I grew up in a small town in Florida, Pine Castle, which was sort of a suburb of Orlando. I actually grew up on an island between Lake Conway (AKA Big Lake Conway and Little Lake Conway). There was one bridge on and off the Island. We would go to Monroe’s Market in Pine Castle for groceries. Monroe’s was owned by Lonnie Monroe and run by members of his family. They lived just across the bridge from us. In my teen years I worked as a cashier and was an apprentice in the meat department learning how to cut, clean, and package meat. This was pre-Disney being built and when Orlando International Airport (a few miles from our house) was McCoy Airforce Base.

    One of my childhood memories was getting together as a family to make fruit cakes (well in advance of Christmas) and then steep them with liquor for a couple of months before declaring they were ready for gifting. I loved trying to sneak the cherries out of the fruit mix but was usually caught before I got too many. I can’t remember the liquor that was used but I think it was rum and bourbon.

  54. Gene Moore says:

    Thanks for your A&P story. Yes, I do remember the Jane Parker fruit cakes–my mother bought one every year before Christmas when we lived in Charlotte in the late 1940’s and early 1950’s. And she frequently bought those wonderful Spanish Bar cakes. I also remember going into that huge A&P store on Park Avenue–I drove by the location a year ago, and the building is still there (and it still looks like an A&P, although it is now occupied by an office supply store).

  55. kathy says:

    oh boy! i do remember A & P stores and the Jane Parker products. mom shopped there all the time! good memories!!

  56. Dora says:

    I believe my favorite memory of A&P was the stamps. It was so much fun to fill in the booklets back in the day:) The pictures look delicious.

  57. Jean says:

    I do remember the grocery store but not the fruit cake. However, the spice cake brings back positive memories!! What memory did come to mind when reading your article was P&P loaf and olive loaf lunch meats. Havent thought about those in years but think it was a staple in our refrigerator.

  58. Anita Davis says:

    Oh My! How this takes me back to my roots in Clyde/Waynesville, NC. The Jane Parker Fruitcake was the first fruitcake I ever tasted. My mother would buy one “during the season” and offer a slice with A & P Coffee – I was very young, so the coffee made me feel like a big girl! Thank you for sharing Steve – sweet memories from my NC Mountains!

  59. Regina says:

    Thanks for the great post. I have such wonderful memories of going to A & P with my maw maw. I will definitely order a fruit cake and enjoy a cup of Eight O’clock. You have me teary eyed this morning thinking of my grandmother.

  60. Karen M. says:

    My mom would buy a large, round Jane Parker Fruit Cake several weeks early and put it in a tea towel lined “tin”. Then every few days she would pour a little Apple Jack over it, seal the tin, and put it in a cool place. I had to wait until I was nearly grown to have a slice…for adults only!

  61. Terresa A Wood says:

    I haven’t thought about this store in such a long time. Loved it, great quality products. The coffee was a favorite.

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