30th November 2010, on the menu today...
M&S Family Biscuits for Tea
Browsing the shelves of my not-very-local M&S last week, I happened upon their new biscuit selection range. This consisted of a lot of fancy sounding biscuits; however, many of the selections were either all-butter or all-chocolate. Being a lover of variety, I opted for the less sophisticated "Family Biscuits for Tea" with its cheery, retro-looking packaging. Having finished my old stash of biscuits yesterday, I promptly whipped out my M&S assortment for a TGBD tasting session - it's a hard life I know.
Front: I really like this design with its old-fashioned feel courtesy of the retro TV set and alarm clock, teapot and serif typeface. Moreover, the red colour scheme gives the design a cheerfulness and warmth one would associate with a family product.
Back: I think informative and clear would sum up this area of the design well. As with the other selections in the range, the packaging's reverse has lovely big pictures of the biscuits inside so you could clearly see what you were getting. Likewise, the white ingredient's list is very clear against the red background.
Taste: The selection consisted of the following: Oat Crunch Biscuit, Dark Chocolate Biscuit, Milk Chocolate Digestive, Half Coated Dark Chocolate Finger, Teacake, Crunchy Milk Chocolate Finger, Chocolate Chip Cookie, Bourbon Cream, Coconut Cookie, Milk Chocolate Oval and Custard Cream.
The Custard Cream, Milk Chocolate Digestive and Bourbon were all on the money and, instead of repeating myself here, I will refer you to their respective TGBD reviews (see the 'Categories' section of site).
As for the others, this is what I thought:
Oat Crunch Biscuit: As you might imagine, this is very similar to a HobNob with a gentle but not overwhelming sweetness and a nicely textured, almost coarse, consistency courtesy of the oats. A tasty offering that you can tuck in to happily knowing that we are always being told to eat more oats!
Dark Chocolate Biscuit:
This is very nice indeed as the cocoa-rich flavour of the dark chocolate combine with the crumbly texture of the biscuit interior.
Half Coated Dark Chocolate Finger:
Being "half coated" in chocolate I expected the chocolate to play a big part in the overall taste of this biscuit; however, its flavour didn't really come across at all. Instead of the cocoa-rich hit I was expecting, I got a slight sweetness and soft bite complementing a plain wheat biscuit. That said, it still tasted great.
First off, you are never going to beat a Tunnock's Teacake as far as I am concerned so, with realistic expectations here, I would say this was a rather tasty offering. The exterior chocolate layer has an audibly satisfying snap to it and delivers a decent sweet milky taste. Beyond this, your teeth sink in to soft, sticky and relatively sweet snowy-white mallow which is delightful as it looks and sounds. Finally, the textures of the chocolate and mallow are contrasted beautifully by the crumbly biscuit base that has an almost malty quality to it.
Crunchy Milk Chocolate Finger:
The chocolate coating on this was rather decent and the sweet, milky taste of the chocolate really came through. My only criticism is that the chocolate element was a bit overwhelming and, therefore, the balance of flavours could do with being revised.
Chocolate Chip Cookie: An old favourite that, regardless of the brand, is consistently good. The crumbly biscuit is punctuated by the occasional bite of sweet, milky chocolate chips making for a wonderful taste and texture experience. Only problem, they are never big enough!
Almost coarse in texture, this biscuit delivered a delightful wave of coconut to the palette without being overwhelming and, in my opinion, made for a nice break from all the chocolate.
Milk Chocolate Oval: Similar to the Crunchy Milk Chocolate Finger, I felt the proportion of sweet milky chocolate to crumbly wheat biscuit was better judged here.
Have you considered...?
No hydrogenated fat, artificial colours or artificial flavourings are used.
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