Since 2016 Twinings Teas have been recognised as outstanding products with truly great taste and we very proudly wear our Great Taste badges of honour. This year we continued to deliver fantastic flavour, walking away with five 1-star accolades!
There were 12,777 entries into Great Taste this year and with only 30% awarded a 1-star accolade we are delighted to have received five for some of our favourite Black Tea Blends – English Strong Breakfast, Everyday Tea, The Full English, The Earl, All Day Decaf.
GREAT TASTE - WHAT’S ALL THE FUSS ABOUT?
Recognised as a reliable stamp of excellence, Great Taste values taste above all else, with no regard for branding and packaging.
All products are removed from their wrapper, jar, box or bottle before being tasted. They are then judged by some of the most discerning palates, belonging to food critics, chefs, restauranteurs, buyers, food writers, journalists and many more, who are all looking for quality of ingredients, great texture and appearance. It’s not about smart packaging or clever marketing – it’s all about taste!
If you see the unmistakable Great Taste label you can rest assured knowing that within lies an outstanding product which has been rigorously tested and fairly judged.
TASTING DURING LOCKDOWN
As we all know, this year did not end up going quite to plan. But did this stop the 144 judges and clever team at Great Taste from completing their blind judging? Of course not.
After lockdown began just one week into normal judging practice which involves all judges in one location, the Guild of Fine Food quickly had to establish a way in which to judge the remaining 12,000 products remotely. In early May, a remote judging system was established, with entries consolidated at the Guild of Fine Food’s HQ in Dorset and then sent to smaller groups of judges, working remotely and sharing the experience over Zoom. This ensured that a similar number of experts assessed every food and drink product.
Following the considerable efforts of the Great Taste team, the judges and the flexibility of the food producers who entered, the results and thorough feedback on each product were published only seven weeks after the originally planned results date.
OUR 2020 WINNERS
TWININGS ENGLISH STRONG BREAKFAST
Really nice, bright and brisk, robust flavour. Earthy, with a fruity aroma on the nose and a deep red/orange colour. When drunk black, the tea is full bodied and brisk with only a hint of bitterness. When milk is added it continues to carry the flavours without the bitterness producing a rich and malty, good quality cuppa.
TWININGS EVERYDAY TEA
A coloury infusion with some briskness. Very good strength and colour and is bright with attractive quality. It retains good colour with milk added, which does round out the flavour to create a decent brew.
TWININGS THE EARL
A classic Earl Grey - smooth and light with a bold uplifting character and crisp citrus notes making this a drink to savour. The pyramid tea bag brews swiftly to a deep orange-golden shade with a pleasing bergamot aroma.
On the palate, the bergamot comes through clearly but not overtly strong, just the perfect level for the firm, rounded black tea base. The astringency is light enough to drink the infusion black, with a slice of lemon if preferred, but milk smooths out the astringency, while still delivering sound bergamot character.
TWININGS THE FULL ENGLISH
A very full -flavoured and coloury brew with good strength and a little briskness. A hearty blend of malty, full-bodied Assam with brisk, bright Kenyan from East of the Rift Valley. It is full-flavoured with milk and makes for an invigorating breakfast tea.
TWININGS ALL DAY DECAF
Red, bright and brisk, a decaffeinated tea that actually delivers great quality. The pyramid teabag produces a rich mid-amber coloured liquor, clear and bright, with a light malty aroma.
The flavour is pleasantly brisk on the palate for a decaffeinated tea. Remains coloury with milk, which softens the sharpens slightly but the tea remains surprisingly brisk for a decaf.
MEET SOME OF THE JUDGES
Martha Collison is a British baker, author and recipe writer who rose to fame as the youngest Great British Bake Off contestant in 2014.
She has since continued to grow in the food industry, writing a weekly column for Waitrose Weekend, demonstrating at festivals and baking at high profile events - such as 'A recipe for Life' with the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, and was the offical afternoon tea consultant at Wimbledon. She has also worked with and developed recipe for several high-profile brands such as Cadbury, Mars, Lindt, Tate and Lyle, Panasonic, Billington’s and Tala Bakeware.
Martha has recently partnered with Bramber Bakehouse, a charity dedicated to restoring women who have experienced sexual exploitation through baking workshops. Martha is part of the teaching team and has written the recipes for the bakery.
Kavi Thakrar is co-founder of the highly successful Bombay-inspired restaurants, Dishoom. Together with his cousin Shamil, the pair have brought Irani cafés from 20th century Bombay to 21st Century London and Edinburgh and taken the UK by storm with innovative and authentic dishes.
Dishoom won the Yelp! award for Best Restaurant in the UK two years running and was ranked #36 in the Sunday Times ‘100 Best Companies to Work For’ list in 2017.
Food writer and Daily Telegraph Columnist Xanthe Clay originally trained as a chef at Leith’s and worked as a chef and caterer in the West Country before starting the Readers’ Recipe column for the Telegraph.
Since then she has worked on both food and cookery features for Weekend Telegraph, as well as writing her own cookery books and contributing to Good Food magazine, olive magazine, delicious magazine and Sainsburys magazine.
Xanthe is also the President of the Guild of Food Writers and Academy Chair (UK and Ireland) for World’s 50 Best Restaurants.