Not-so-official GBAtemp Review of...

Sinkhead

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Not-as-official-as-it-could-be GBAtemp.net review of the...

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Rowan Hill Bakery
Deep Filled Mince Pies


aka: The nicest-looking mince pies LIDL sells
Manufactured by: Rowan Hill Bakery (owned by LIDL)
Review samples supplied by: Sinkhead

By Sinkhead - 16th December 2007

Review Contents & Index:
  • Introduction
    - Official feature list
  • Packaging and Contents
    - Box Contents
  • Cart Design
  • Setting Up & Using
    - GUI (OS)
  • Performance
    - ROM compatibility
    - Battery life
  • Conclusion
Introduction

'Twas the week before Christmas, and in Sinkhead's room,
Sinkhead was stirring, hungry for food.

He lay there nestled, all snug in his bed,
With visions of mince pies inside his head,
When the alarm went BEEP BEEP BEEP
And the poem stopped.​

I was hungry but I had no money, so I went to LIDL, and among all the tramps and pregnant chavettes I found what I was looking for. Mince Pies
biggrin.gif


Now, I didn't realize this before but apparently Mince Pies are a very English thing, so I'll explain what they are for all those foreigners. It's not actually mincemeat in the pies, it's a mixture of apples, raisins, sultanas, currants, orange peel, apricot, mixed spice, dextrose salt and invert sugar syrup. Yummy. Surrounding that delectable mixture is a pastry case, hence mince pie. This is often topped off with a dusting of sugar, and in this case, a pastry pattern. They are eaten traditionally at Christmas, but they taste good all year round.

Official Feature List:
  • Pastry cases with a mincemeat filling
  • 187 calories (9% of your GDA
  • )
  • 7.5g fat (11% of your GDA)
  • 2.6g saturates (1% of your GDA)
  • 0.1g salt (2% of your GDA)
  • 16.4g sugar (18% of your GDA)
Packaging and Contents
piesandbox.jpg
The box of the pies is an almost browny-purple, with your typical completely-different-from-what-they-actually-look-like product pictures. There is a small chart showing how healthy they are for you, the weight of the box (595g) and a small see-through window so you can inspect the product before you buy them.
On the back, in 4 different languages, are the instructions, allergy information, storage information, nutrition information and heating instructions. It' good to see multi-language support, however I suspect this was done so the pies can be sold in many different countries without changing the box. The languages currently supported are English, German, French and Italian, however because I can only read English fluently I can't tell how accurate the other translations are.

Inside the box are two red plastic trays, and one separator, The separator is really useful, as it stops the top rows of pies crushing the bottom ones, and it works rather well. Each pie arrives in it's own little foil dish, which can sometimes be quite fiddly to get off, but if you squeeze slightly at each side, it usually comes off.

Box Contents
  • 12x Deep filled mince pies
Cart Design
pie.jpg
Each pie is 6.5cm in diameter on the top, 4 on the bottom, and 3cm tall. Taking into account the taper at the sides, I calculated that the pie is around 23.8cm3. That's good value for money. The build quality is fairly good, the 6mm pastry keeps the shape of the pie very well, however the pies cannot fit in my mouth all at once. Which is good, because I don't think there would be many left if they could. You get a good 3 to 4 bites out of them. The little crust snaps off very easily, but that doesn't affect the usability of this product. And the little holly leaves on the top make the pies look rather appetising.

Setting Up & Using
As I mentioned before, you have to get the pies out of their little foil dishes. Usually this is easy, but when you're trying to extract a pristine pie to photograph, it's quite hard. The crust often snaps off, or the pie cracks, or some other mishap occurs to stop me taking my photo, but you get there in the end. I found that pressing on the bottom of the pie dish is the best way to get a pie out without damaging it.

GUI (OS)
Unfortunately I haven't found a way to connect it to my DS. It doesn't fit in either of the slots, however I suspect that blending one and pouring it down could possibly work. But I don't have a blender.

Performance
piescutopen.jpg
Taste
The pies taste nice, however they are fairly sweet. The filling tastes similar to jam. I prefer my mince pies to be slightly less sweet, as you get to taste the fruit more, but that's my opinion. The pastry tastes OK, it's bland, if anything it is sweet, like the filling. The two elements work together nicely, you can taste them both together which is nice.

Texture
The filling is very soft and sticky, and the raisins, currants and sultanas are soft. Not mushy, they still 'pop' in your mouth, which is good. The pastry is fairly crumbly (it's shortcrust pastry) however a thin layer of the filling holds it together well. There are still some seeds in the mixture, which stick in your teeth and are very crunchy. This spoils the pies slightly.

Appearance
The pies are golden-brown, being paler on the top and darker on the crust and embossed holly leaves. The sugar catches the light and makes little shines on top which looks great, however one some of the pies you can see where the lid has not joined onto the sides, indicated by little gaps. These are often hidden by the sugar which, naturally, falls into these, but it still makes the pie look quite cheap.

Aroma
All you can smell is the pastry, which gives a rather bland smell, but once you ut the pies open the filling has a fairly sickly sweet smell. I recommend serving with other ingredients to disguise the smell (see compatibility chart below)

ROM Compatibility
For reasons mentioned above, I can't get it to boot on my DS, so I'll have to try alternative ingredients instead of ROMs.
PASS: Yummy.
PROBLEMS: Sort-of nice, not something you would serve to your friends.
FAIL: Disgusting.
  • Apple sauce
    Problem - Far too sweet
  • Baked Beans
    Fail - The pie goes all mushy and the tastes contrast
  • Cream
    Pass - Tastes nicest with double cream, but make sure you eat the pie quickly before it goes soggy
  • Dog Food
    Fail - Dog food tastes icky on its own, never mind with a pie...
  • Egg Mayo
    Problem - The two tastes actually go quite well, but eating it in front of people is a big NO
  • Froob Yoghurt
    Pass - Fairly sweet, the it adds a different flavour which goes well
  • Gravy
    Fail - The tastes don't go well together. And soggy.
  • Ice
    Fail - You eat mince pies in Winter, you're already cold
  • Jelly
    Pass - That's Jello for you Americans, and it tastes nice!
  • King Crab
    Problem - Too expensive for Sinkhead to try
    frown.gif
  • Lemon juice
    Problem - Very bitter, but not inedible
  • Milk
    Problem - Poor man's cream. Don't eat it in front of your friends.
  • Nutella
    Pass - Mmmm, chocolate and mince pies go really well
  • Oats
    Fail - Just no. Far too dry.
  • Peanut Butter
    Problem - The tastes don't quite mix
  • Queen CDs
    Fail - Ouch, my mouth hurts
  • Rum
    Fail - The taste of the rum is too strong
  • Squirty Cream
    Pass - Tastes really good, like cream
  • Tartar Sauce
    Fail - Too vinegar-y, and the taste is too strong
  • Wine
    Fail - Taste is too strong, and it makes the pie go soggy
  • X-Rays
    Fail - Cancerous
  • Yak Milk
    Problem - They don't sell it at LIDL, but I bet it would be nice
As you can see, compatibility is far from perfect, however the things it does taste good with are the ones you should be eating them with anyway. I recommend squirty cream the most.

Battery Life Results:

Best before 21st January 2008
Eat within 14 days of opening

Conclusion
If you're poor like me (and Kenny), then these mince pies will be ample, however the luxury models are much better. These ones aren't exactly gourmet, they're a little bit dry and too sweet, but you could do a lot worse.
You should give them a try
smile.gif


Pros
+ Cheap
+ Tasty

Cons
- Too sweet
- Pastry is bland
- They look cheap

award_silver.png


External Links:Where to buy?:This review was written for GBAtemp.net ONLY. The article and all included photos are property of GBAtemp.net
If you see this review on any other site please let me know via e-mail - Sinkhead [@[email protected]] GBAtemp [.dot.] net
 

Hadrian

Everybody knows badgers like MASH POTATOES!
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I can't stand mince pies but great review..

Any chance of a review of the McDonalds ones? I'd like to know if they are as manky as anything else they serve and filled with as much pig fat.
 

ZAFDeltaForce

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Great review Sink, I just had dinner but I feel hungry again
laugh.gif


This line cracked me up: Unfortunately I haven't found a way to connect it to my DS. It doesn't fit in either of the slots, however I suspect that blending one and pouring it down could possibly work. But I don't have a blender.

Good stuff, sink
yaynds.gif
 

Veho

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I loved the compatibility list. Any chance of making a Wiki? There are some aROMas I'm interested in that you haven't tested, namely, honey, white chocolate, and maybe gummi bears.

Man I'd love to sink my head into that pie.
ph34r.gif
...
wtf.gif


I can never decide if your puns are simply brilliant or absolutely dreadful.
wacko.gif
 

Jax

Pip Pip Cheerioink!
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I heard there's a chinese knock off floating around.
Don't buy the one with sprinkles, it's a fake!
 

Bob Loblaw

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haha i was gonna ask if it works on PAL but then I saw Jax's comment about oven pie connectivity. mines won't be so funnies after thats.
 

Psyfira

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How does it compare to Fantastic Noodles? In your opinion which is the superior product? A comparison tables of features would make it a lot easier for those of us scratching our heads over which to have for lunch tomorrow.
happy.gif


Come to think of it, can it be used with Fantastic Noodles to take advantage of the features of both?
 

Szyslak

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Excellent review Sam. A couple questions:

How's the backwards compatibility with yesterdays coffee / tea? Some of us can't afford to upgrade.

Does it still fit in the appropriate slot if you insert it upside-down?

I can't seem to find this in my usual places, so I'll have to test later.

*keeps fingers crossed for a US batch update


BTW, this was fully deserving of being "sticky" (That was for Ace's enjoyment)

[Sam Edit]
If you can afford to heat up aforementioned tea/coffee it doesn't taste bad, but it's pretty nasty compatibility if you run it cold.
Still no luck in getting it to fit
frown.gif

I heard that more retailers will stock this if more people buy it, maybe it's one of those things you have to risk trying without reviews!

- Sam
[/Sam Edit]
 

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