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Sep 28, 2011 09:54 PM

Pink popcorn - Bay Area only?

Last Sunday the Chronicle ran a story about SF's "Culinary Highlights" - link here: - including the pink popcorn sold in bricks at the SF Zoo. Here's a link to a photo of the popcorn:

Is this stuff only Bay Area? I grew up eating it - I worked at the zoo as a kid - and never thought it was unique. Is this another endangered SF classic? I think I remember having it at Fairyland too?

Please enlighten me! Is pink popcorn a Bay Area phenomenon?

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  1. They used to sell Pink popcorn at lakeside park at lake merritt in oakland.

    Is that little snack shack still open?


      They currently have it at Piedmont Grocery, and I do remember begging for it (without success) at Children's Fairyland around 45 years ago.

      5 Replies
      1. re: lexdevil

        Thanks for that link to Wright's on Potrero Ave. Apparently there is another location in Sacramento.

        So, for all the non-natives, did you beg for pink popcorn in Detroit or Dallas or Kansas City too, or does it not exist there?

        1. re: Junie D

          I've lived all over the country, and been to a fair number of zoos; I've never seen the pink brick anywhere other than SF. (Only remember seeing it at the zoo. Used to go paddle boating and Stow Lake and can't remember it being available there.)

        2. re: lexdevil

          Lexdevil you cannot possibly be old enough to be begging for pink popcorn 45 years ago!

          I think this topic is self-selecting: the only people who are reading/responding are people who grew up with pink popcorn in the Bay Area and didn't realize that other children were growing up in a pink-popcorn-brick-less world. It certainly never occurred to me that pink popcorn bricks were uniquely Bay Area!

          1. re: Ruth Lafler

            Ruth's definitely onto something - before even reading a single post, the title of this thread transported me to the zoo 20-something years ago.

            1. re: Ruth Lafler

              "children were growing up in a pink-popcorn-brick-less world" Sad to think of, indeed.

              Now who remembers the mouse house where the mice tunneled through loaves of bread at the entrance to the children's zoo? Were they sourdough or am I just being totally nostalgic?

          2. Pink popcorn bricks were sold at the snack stand at the Tilden Park carousel many moons ago, and may still be.

            1. No pink popcorn at the Brookfield Zoo outside of Chicago, or anywhere else I have ever been. But that zoo had the best caramel corn in the entire world--back in the last century. (Now it is prepackaged crapola.)

              1. It wasn't in any sort of solid bricks, but I definitely had pink popcorn growing up in Nova Scotia. Don't think I've seen it in a very long while though...

                2 Replies
                1. re: CanadaGirl

                  I had pink popcorn in Canada (Toronto in particular) as well. Not in bricks for sure.. I think it was at movie theaters in the 80's/90's. I THINK it was some sort of pink flavoring that went on like "butter".... though I can't remember exactly...

                  1. re: gnomatic

                    The stuff I has looked more like caramel corn, but pink. It looks like the photo in the OP's link, only not in a brick but just loose in the bag. Although, now that I think about it, it also came in a little white box with a picture of an elephant on it