Thursday, 15 November 2012

Sainsbury's - Taste the Difference - Brandy Rich Mini Mince Pies

The larger mince pie has dominated this blog since the start. It is about time I reviewed a mini mince pie. These are Sainsbury's luxury, "taste the difference" brand. Let's see if all good things come in small packages.

The Facts

Now this is confidence. Not only is there a window to see into the box, but Sainsbury's do not write anything on the top of their box except a little stamp stating that these have been "taste tested by customers". In case you're not sure as to what is inside, a glance at the side of the box reveals a very simple label stating who makes it, that it is their luxury brand and the contents. I have not placed it in the title, but the label goes on to say that these are mince pies "with all butter pastry".

I must say I like the decoration on the box too. It is classy as well as being subtly festive with gold holly and snowflakes. If you are not concentrating you would easily miss it.

It would seem that these are healthier pies at only 104 calories, 3.5g of fat and 11.3g of sugar, but let's not forget these are mini mince pies. They also claim to have a 50/50 split between pastry and mincemeat.

First Impressions

Despite the thought that Sainsbury's have put into the box, I feel the same thought has not gone into the styling of the mince pie. I'm sure it seemed like a good idea to stick stars on top, but I do not think this is in keeping with a luxury mince pie. A small lattice top would have looked classier.

Regardless of my preference, these do look like well filled and well cooked little mince pies. It is clear that these are filled properly, as you can see it. The filling does look a little dry, but that just could be the way it becomes when exposed to the heat without a full cover on top.

The Bite

This is not a bad little mince pie. Due to peer pressure from my colleagues at work, I have discovered I can fit two of these in my mouth at once. As a result, when I came to review this one, I almost forgot to take a bite instead of shoving it in whole! The pie holds up well after a bite, there is a little buckling at the top, but nothing serious.

The pastry is pretty tasty. It does taste a little sweet on its own, but with the filling it is just fine. You can certainly taste the butter as there is 29% of the cow-made goodness in there. The thickness of the pastry all around is just right for the amount of mincemeat in there too.

The filling is also good quality and with plenty of fruit. As you can see from the picture, it just seems to be whole sultanas and currants. There is very little of the apple purée mixed with the rest of the spices to make this mincemeat a little less dry. 4% of this pie is brandy and while that seems a lot for a small mince pie, it is not an overpowering taste, which I was pleasantly surprised with.


I am very pleased with this little pie. I think as a larger pie it might be too rich, but as the mini version, the pastry to mincemeat and brandy ratio is just right. While this is a brand that has made a posh pie by pouring plenty of alcohol in it, you are not attacked by it instantly. I would have liked slightly more apple purée and spices in the mincemeat to moisten it all, but I can live without it as there is not enough of it to really feel the affects of a dry pie. Eat more than one of these in one sitting (or shove two of these in your mouth at once) and you might realise.

"Say 'hello' to my little pie!"

4.0 / 5

If you've had other mini mince pies share them in the comments below.