How do M&S fare in the battle of mince pies?

These Marks and Sparks mince pies are a bit of a let down to be honest. They say all-butter on them, but that isn’t very evident from the taste. The recommended time they have to put them in the oven is too long, so the mincemeat was too hot. They look alright, with a simple incision in the top to give that old-school look, but I think that’s what leads them to let all the heat in an burn my tongue. Sibyl said too much mincemeat too. Oh dear Marks and Sparks.

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What am I mincing my words with?

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Pies of course!

I’ve tried three types so far. First of the year were the Sainsbury’s brand. They were a great opener. Crumbly pastry; sugar-covered; good raisin ratio etc. your classic mince pie.

Then I tried Aberystwyth Spar’s version, whilst on a visit back to the Motherland. They had more of a homemade feel. But I was outraged with my friends for not owning a microwave that I could quickly zap them in to get that required warmth. So that ruined things a little.

Most exciting were purchased this week. From Waitrose. They’re branded with a certain Blumenthal brand. They look like pork pies — and you wouldn’t put it past him to actually put pork in them. They’re very very heavily spiced. And I chucked ’em in the oven. And there’s orange flavoured dusting sugar to sprinkle on top. (See above picture). Tasted really Christmassy. Would be disappointed if these were the only mince pies in existence, but as an exciting alternative, yule have to agree they’re very nice.

Much more fun to be had this holiday season. I heard Iceland topped one poll as the best mince pie. What are your recommendations?