Wall's "Just One Cornetto" TV Advert from 1981

By Mark Nobes

There are some adverts from the 80s that really stick in your mind, and this "Just One Cornetto" advert by Wall's Ice Cream is certainly one of them. This is actually the second in a series of musical ad's by Wall's UK, which first aired in 1981. 

The advert features a guy and his girlfriend (who's hairstyle very much resembles that of Lady Diana in her early years) in a small paddle boat on an English river - which is rather less romantic that a gondola! 

The girl is enjoying a cornetto and the guy starts singing "Just One Cornetto, give it to me, delicious ice cream of Italy", except it is actually made in the UK, although has its roots in Italy, which I'll come to in a moment. As the couple pass a gondolier, the song then becomes more operatic, and is based on the late 19th century Italian opera song "O Sole Mio".

I remember around the time that when Cornettos were first introduced in 1976, they were priced at around 30p each, and more expensive that other items in the range such as Feast and Orange Frutie, both of which I also enjoyed. By 1981, the price had risen to 35p. There was also a Choco Rico cone that sold for 40p. The rival to Cornetto was King Cone.

The ice cream cone snack was first introduced in 1959, but didn't become available in the UK until 1976, when Unilever bought the patent from the Italian ice cream company Spica. It was sold by various subsidiaries of the company, which included Wall's in the UK.

The word Cornetto translates as "little horn" in Italian. The inside of the waffle cone has a protective coating made from oil, sugar and chocolate, which stops the ice cream from making the cone go soggy.

Wall's Cornetto Logo and Italian River with Gondola

Can you still buy Wall's Cornetto?

Yes, you can still buy Wall's Cornetto from most supermarkets, newsagents and petrol filling stations with a freezer section. Varieties include Classico (Choc & Nut), Strawberry and Mint. You can now also buy Cornetto Soft, which has the texture of the classic Mr. Whippy and Flake 99 ice creams. These are available Chocolate, Strawberry, Cookie and Chocolate, Caramel & Hazelnut and Salted Caramel.
Blonde haired girl in a pink top eating a Cornetto ice cream