Tim Tam Rum and Raisin

April 12, 2011 at 16:15 | Posted in biscuits | Leave a comment
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A little while ago we looked at the new Tim Tam Dark Mint, and I noted that it was introduced with a companion biscuit, the ‘Rum and Raisin’. I have now had the opportunity to sample the Rum and Raisin variety, and can report back. My first experiences with Rum and Raisin flavour were when I was a small child, and we used to go to stay with relatives on the coast for the summer holidays. Occasionally we got an ice-cream, and the local ice-cream emporium had six flavours – the ‘normal’ ones (vanilla, strawberry, chocolate) and the ‘luxury’ ones (mint choc chip, tutti frutti and rum’n’raisin). Of course, the rum’n’raisin seemed by far the most exciting, and the one we used to pester our parents to buy for us. I actually recall that I wasn’t very fond of the flavour, but asked for it anyway. Such is the effect of peer pressure; nowadays I am much more confident in who I am, and can ask for vanilla whilst only feeling slightly self-conscious. Anyway, how do these new Tim Tams measure up? Are they going to be an improvement on my 1970s ice-cream experiences?

They are packaged up in the same sophisticated design, although at first glance it appears that the biscuits are accompanied by some cherries, and a mint leaf. I think these are actually grapes and the leaf from a grape vine, but it’s a little unclear. This ambiguity is carried through in other areas, as we shall see. There is also a stamp that indicates that they are made with Jamaican rum. The small print indicates that the biscuits contain less than 0.1% alcohol, so by my calculations you’d have to eat around 500 packets to get the equivalent of one standard drink, so it’s probably OK to eat a Rum and Raisin Tim Tam and then drive.

The biscuits look and smell like regular dark Tim Tams, however they are filled with a slightly chewy, jammy filling. To my mind it tastes a lot more like cherries than raisins; indeed coupled with the pack artwork I suspect if these were marketed as ‘dark cherry’ flavour there would be no complaints. They are certainly not especially raisiny, and the rum is pretty much undetectable. They are actually quite pleasant, but certainly not as good as the Mint version. I’d give them an eight out of ten.

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Spicy Fruit Roll

December 25, 2010 at 04:30 | Posted in biscuits | 1 Comment
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The Spicy Fruit Roll contains 45% ‘real’ fruit. I’ve always wondered about this. Are there biscuits out there that contain artificial fruit? If something was simply labelled ‘45% fruit’, should I be cynical and suspicious and assume the fruit is counterfeit?

Either way, we can rest assured in this case, as the Spicy Fruit Roll contains raisins, sultanas, and currants, as well as citrus peel. And the difference between raisins, sultanas and currants, as you all know, is that raisins are dried grapes, sultanas are married to sultans and currants are what flow around electrical circuits. <Boom tish>, I’m here all week.

The biscuit consists of a fairly soft outer ‘roll’ that is crimped at the edges. The amount of filling is, I think, slightly less generous than depicted on the packet, but the balance of filling to biscuit is about right. So what do they taste like?

In a word, they taste like Christmas. You know; log fires, carollers, mulled wine and so on. There is definitely spices going on there – perhaps nutmeg and cinnamon. And there’s also something else; a hint of aftershave, perhaps, that actually enhances the evocation of Christmas. They are not a seasonal line and are available all year round, but I have to say eating a Spicy Fruit Roll in, say, August, would be a discombobulating experience.

So I would give them an eight out of ten in December, but only a four out of ten for the rest of the year.

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