Wake up and smell the lawsuit: Taster's Choice model goes to court


Russell Christoff has the strong features and gorgeous dark eyebrows of a model. His hair is grey now, but he's still just as handsome as he was when his hair was still dark brown, back in 1986 and living in Canada, when he posed looking lovingly into a cup of Taster's Choice coffee "as if he enjoyed the aroma."

But, after the photo shoot, he heard nothing more from Nestle. He gave the company permission to use the photo in Canada, but not elsewhere. The photo was stuffed into the archives. Until 1998, when a Nestle employee was searching the archives for just the right "Taster" to portray the brand and chose Christoff's almost romantic photo. It's too bad Christoff doesn't actually enjoy the aroma of Taster's Choice, at least not enough to drink the stuff, because it wasn't until 2002 that he saw his own, younger face staring back at him from the shelves of instant coffee crystals -- in California, where he was working as a teacher.

Originally published