STORY: GAIL's scoops 14 Great Taste Awards
GAIL’s Bakery has won 14 Great Taste Awards for the products sold in its bakeries, including fresh bakes and cupboard essentials.
Organised by the Guild of Fine Food, and judged blind by some of the most discerning palates in food and drink, the awards are all about celebrating great tasting food.
GAIL’s has reported it is proud to have its products recognised and is glad to be able to highlight so many of its partners, such as Quicke’s Cheese and Island’s Chocolate, who help make the products.
A FULL LIST OF WINNING PRODUCTS AND ASSOCIATED JUDGES' COMMENTS
HAZELNUT & CHOCOLATE SPREAD
Made by GAIL's partner Islands, a blend of chocolate and Italian hazelnuts.
Judges Comments: “Both the hazelnut and cacao are perfectly balanced, with a little touch of saltiness. Very moreish and a really delightful product.”
Thin, crispy biscuits made with almonds, pecans, hazelnuts and pistachios.
Judges Comments: “Very pretty looking biscuits. Very generous with the nuts – lots of great chunks of all nuts on show. Not sure if they are sweet or savoury, they could be both. But really buttery and moreish! Great crunch and very rich flavour.”
POTATO & ROSEMARY SOURDOUGH
Wheat flour, white starter, skin-on baked potato, rosemary, nigella seeds and olive oil. This loaf has a soft crust, light, savoury crumb and rich, earthy flavour.
Judges Comments: “The aroma of fresh rosemary was really appealing and it had a good sour tang and the earthy potato flavour was also there, which added some density to the lightness. The use of salt was well-balanced, the crust had a pleasing chewiness and we thought it was incredibly more-ish. Well done, it’s a great example of its kind.”
Wheat-flour dough, enriched with milk, butter and sugar. A thin, delicate crust and a slightly doughy crumb. Baking again soon!Just what a proper muffin should be like!
Judges Comments: “The judges were very impressed with the expert cooking of this product. The crumb was light and airy. The salt content was well judged and there was a slight sourness from a fully fermented dough.”
GAIL’s HOUSE BLEND COFFEE
Full-bodied, balanced and sweet, with hints of muscovado sugar and a lingering nutty, walnut-like finish. A soft and pleasant acidity, often referred to as “bright”, and reminiscent of red berries.
Judges Comments: “Quite a heavy, impactful aroma from the roasted beans. Milk increases the sweetness and rounds out the profile, adding a pleasing velvetiness to the mouthfeel. It’s a ‘safe bet’ coffee… but impactful and easily enjoyable, particularly with milk added.”
CHOCOLATE CHUNK COOKIE DOUGH
Chocolate chunk cookie dough ready for customers to slice and bake at home.
Judges Comments: “Invitingly large chunks of chocolate.. doughy without being undercooked. Decent chocolate and not too sweet. We enjoyed these. Quality ingredients, and they do taste homemade.”
Croissant dough offcuts swirled with chocolate custard, chocolate chunks and cocoa powder and baked into a loaf. Part of the GAIL's WasteNot range.
Judges Comments: “What a beautiful looking loaf, with lots of chocolate oozing out at some points and beautiful swirls which looks really well made. We like the taste of the dark chocolate, which we think is good quality with a smooth mouth feel and we like the balance of sweet and sour flavours. This is really nicely balanced and well made, a good example.”
CHOCOLATE & HAZELNUT BUN
A baked bun enriched with extra virgin olive oil, topped with chocolate and hazelnuts. GAIL's fills the buns with Chocolate & Hazelnut Spread made by its friends at Island’s Chocolate, which is for sale in the bakeries.
Judges Comments: “A beautifully presented brioche bun… The judges did enjoy the crispy nut sprinkles on top which offered a welcome crunch to take away from the soft centre. We would recommend lightening the filling to take this product to the next level. An attractive looking product. Light texture with a crunchy topping. Good range of flavours.”
STICKY DATE & COCONUT BABKA BUN
Baking again next year…
Judges Comments: “Visually attractive with nuts and chopped dates decorating the top. Commendable that it is made from trimmings of croissant dough. It has a rich buttery taste with the flavours of rum, dates and coconut coming through. All the ingredients combine well to product a luxurious taste. It is an unusual take on the traditional croissant and would be popular at breakfast.”
Surplus loaves are ground and mixed with GAIL's white starter to create a rich, complex flavour and soft, cake-like crumb. The taste changes slightly depending on the loaves used. Part of the Waste Not range.
Judges Comments:”It smells delicious and wholesome and has a rich, fulfilling taste. This is a very approachable loaf, without excessive sourness or saltiness.”
CHEDDAR CHEESE CRACKERS
Crispy, buttermilk crackers, topped with grated Quicke’s mature clothbound cheddar off-cuts. Part of the Waste Not range.
Judges Comments: “A good cheesy aroma and a great crunch. The burnt cheese definitely comes through with a hint of sweetness.”
Crispy, buttermilk crackers with a mix of seeds and spices (fennel, poppy, sesame, caraway, nigella, golden linseed and brown linseed).
Judges Comments: “The cracker has an attractive appearance with all the different seeds visible. It is light with a good crunch and all the flavours are detectable and blend well together. The butter milk provides a lovely buttery feel. We felt it was a very satisfying biscuit either on its own or with other products such as cheese, smoked salmon etc.”
Crumbly biscuits with dark chocolate, cocoa powder and sea salt.
Judges Comments: “This has a pleasing chocolatey taste, with a good bite and crunch with plenty of flavour. Homemade aspect of uneven biscuit shapes attractive. Small, very dark brown, rondelles with the characteristic grainy texture. In the mouth they have good crunch but are nice and yielding with a good buttery and chocolately taste without being overly sweet.”
APRICOT & LAVENDER LEAF JAM
Traditionally made in copper pans with whole fruit and cooked by hand in small batches by GAIL's friends at Tea Together.
Judges Comments: “Attractively presented, this jam has an inviting deep orange hue, a rich consistency and an inviting apricot smell. This has a luscious taste with pieces of apricot clearly visible in the jam. An unusual touch adding lavender leaf to the recipe but it is very subtle. The judges commended the high quality of the apricots used which gives the jam its luxuriant taste.”