Bargain supermarket Aldi has beaten off a raft of challengers to be crowned king of the Christmas pudding taste test.
It’s the second year running Aldi’s pudding has won the prestigious accolade from Good Housekeeping.
However, while nine of the German-based supermarket’s Christmas offerings made the shortlist for the top foods and drinks in each category, the premium retailers like Marks & Spencer and Selfridges also feature heavily.
But, it’s Aldi that has once again set the standard.
Its Specially Selected Golden Topped Christmas Pudding beat 32 other products to the title. Judges praised the aroma of the Aldi product, saying the alcohol flavour was nicely balanced with the orange marmalade, nuts and fruit.
Priced at just £7.99 for 907g, Aldi’s was also one of the cheapest puddings among those tested.
Aldi’s slightly more expensive Specially Selected Exquisite Vintage Christmas pudding (£9.99 for 907g) was also among the four runners-up.
The other three included: the Best Pedro Ximenez Sherry & Pear Christmas pudding from Morrisons (£8 for 800g); Marks and Spencer Collection 12 Month Matured Vintage Christmas pudding (£14 for 800g); and the Selfridges Selection Traditional Christmas pudding (£11.99 for 450g).
Some 316 items were taste-tested across 16 categories this year, including pigs in blankets, vegetarian alternatives and vintage port.
Other categories included champagne (under £40), prosecco (under £15), smoked salmon, frozen turkeys, stuffing, cranberry sauce, brandy butter, Stilton, port, mince pies, mulled wine and Christmas cake.
Bettys soft iced star Christmas cake – soft marzipan and icing complement a fresh baked sponge, said the testers.
£30 for 1.5kg
Iceland Luxury 10 pigs in blankets – testers said the sausage was well-seasoned and the bacon crisped up but wasn’t too fatty.
£3.00 for 250g
Marks & Spencer British Oakham turkey crown, with pork, sage & onion stuffing, with bacon lattice – described as a “great centrepiece which is full of flavour”. Taste-testers said the meat was juicy and tender.
£27 for 1.68kg
Best mince pies:
Tesco Finest 6 mince pies – they were praised for their buttery, golden pastry and pretty snowflake pattern. The mincemeat was juicy and there was a “pleasing alcoholic punch” from the port and cognac.
£2 for 6
Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference NV Champagne Brut – bagged the top spot ahead of a bottle of Aldi bubbly. Judges noted its “rich brioche aroma with zesty lemon notes and rich Bramley apple flavours”.
Marks & Spencer’s prosecco – judges described it as a “very drinkable, well-balanced prosecco”, praising its “lively bubbles, ripe red-apple flavour and a hint of pear”.