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Whose festive food is it worth stocking up on? Eat, drink and be merry this Christmas, but shop around for the best seasonal goodies. MARION MCMULLEN sees how top supermarkets' festive favourites match up.


TIS the season to be jolly ... and maybe splash out on a few food treats. Christmas cake, pudding and mince pies all washed down with a glass of chilled Champagne means Santa is on his way.

There is lots of choice on offer, but what products taste great and what offer the best value for money? Before you put the Christmas shopping list together, check to see what treats made the grade with our testers. We tested the leading stores's best selling festive favourites and rated them out of five.

CHAMPAGNE MINCE PIES CHRISTMAS CAKES CHRISTMAS PUDDINGS Grand Cru PS22.99: A hard to beat sparkler for the savvy shopper Score: Specially Selected Mini Mince Pies PS1.79: A bite-sized taste of Christmas Rating: Specially Selected Iced Christmas Cake, PS6.49: Packed with fruit, but icing is tasteless Rating: Specially Selected Luxury Champagne Pudding PS9.99: Even Santa would approve of this one Rating: Extra Special Louis Bernard Premier Cru PS17.50: Bubbly, creamy with a nice dry aftertaste Rating: Extra Special 6 Luxury Mince Pies PS2: The closest you'll get to homemade Rating: Extra Special 3 Month Matured Sparkly Star Cake PS10: Stylish and flavour-packed Rating: Extra Special Luxury Christmas Pudding, PS3: Traditional pud that ticks all boxes Rating: Charles Orban Champagne PS30: Fine for a tipple as the turkey cooks, but lacks sparkle Rating: M&S Ultimate All Butter Mince Pies PS2.99: Light, with armagnac and roasted almonds Rating: Hand-Crafted Ultimate Enchanted Forest Cake PS20: Overpowered by thick icing Rating: Black Forest Christmas Pudding PS17: A sinful twist on Christmas puds Rating: Brut Champagne PS14.99: Dependable rather than dazzling cork popper Rating: Signature All Butter Deep Filled Mince Pies PS2: Tasty, but a bit anaemic looking Rating: Shimmering Bauble Brandy-soaked Fruit Cake PS8.99: Buttery, moist with lashings of brandy Rating: Signature Candy Apple Christmas Pudding PS9.99: A bit dry, but a break from the norm Rating: Blanc De Noirs Champagne PS21.99: Light and frothy, but lacks punch Rating: Brandy Rich Taste The Difference Mince Pies PS2.50: Nice pastry and deep, fruity filling Rating: Reindeer Iced Rich Fruit Cake PS16: A nut-filled treat. An ideal Christmas family treat Rating: Hidden Cherry Centre Christmas Pudding PS10: Big and fruity and very sweet.

Rating: Premier Cru PS19.99: Fruity glass of fizz that's prefect for a Christmas Day toast Rating: Finest Deep Filled All Butter Pastry Mince Pies PS2.50: Great pastry and a boozy filling.

Yummy. Rating: Tesco Finest Fully Iced Christmas Bauble Fruit Cake PS12.50: Prettily iced and delicious Rating: Finest 18 Month Matured Christmas Pudding PS10: Courvoisier Cognac adds a touch of class Rating:
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)
Date:Dec 9, 2013
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