In case it had escaped your attention, somebody at MCG this week celebrated a milestone birthday. Without wanting to make anybody blush, let’s just say a certain person is now 21 with nine years’ experience. As such we have all been reminiscing about our younger days particularly those at university. With this in mind, this week’s taste test focuses on a student staple – the humble baked bean. Would the Heinz baked bean avenge its tomato ketchup companion, which took a surprise pounding in an earlier taste test.
Baked beans are big business with over 1.2 million cans of Heinz Baked Beans alone being consumed in the UK each day. And that doesn’t take into account those who sit in baths full of them to raise money for various charities up and down the country. More importantly, they are the secret ingredient in my mum’s famous lasagne (but don’t tell her I told you!). With such brand domination will MCG’s crack team of taste testers pick them as their favourite?
The contestants, to settle the epic battle of the beans; combat of the cans, and hopefully lead to haricot harmony were:
- Marks & Spencer
The marking criteria were Appearance, Sauce, Taste and Texture. The differences between the samples were quite stark when they were placed side by side, ranging from sample 1; light, watery appearance to sample 3; rich, dark colour and thick sauce. The differences didn’t just end with the colour. Sample 6 had an ‘earthy’ taste associated with one of baked beans greatest allies the baked potato, whereas sample 4 had fruitier undertones. Sample 2 was criticised by many of the tasters for being too hard, although in the interest of fairness that may have had something to do with Kyla’s microwaving ability…
Those of you who have been following the MCG taste tests avidly, and frankly who hasn’t, will be aware that the big brands have been receiving a bit of a kicking in recent months. Could the Lidl bean steal the crown from Heinz as they did in the ketchup taste test?
So without wanting to do my best Dermot O’Leary impression and keep you in anymore suspense, the results are as follows:
- Marks & Spencer 175/280
- Branston 172/280
- Tesco 133/280
- Lidl 118/280
- Sainsbury’s 110/280
- Heinz 100/280
As you can see another shock result. Heinz, the market leader, found itself in bottom place, propping up the rest of the league table. The consistency was criticized for being too watery and the earthy taste was not well received. The clear winners were Marks & Spencer and Branston who were the two runaway leaders, with Branston narrowly missing out dropping points due to its saltier taste. Tesco was best of the rest coming a respectable third, which was due to a metallic aftertaste. Lidl, despite the low low cost (just 29p a can) again punched above its weight beating the more pricey Sainsbury’s as well as Heinz.
So MCG has conclusively proved that if for you Beanz Meanz Heinz, you should give another brand a try, you might be in for a pleasant surprise. As for sitting in a bath of them, well that’s up to you. Now, somebody crack open a window….