Do you remember the soda wars between Coke and Pepsi, with taste tests with people on the street to see which one they liked better? It was fun to see the surprised look on the faces of people who liked the the Coke better, but already pledged their allegiance to Pepsi. I had the opportunity to preside over four blind taste tests for my Purchasing, Storage and Handling class recently. I thought it would be fun to share the results with you.
First, I have to thank my family, who puts up with my strange requests from time to time, to help me fulfill the requirements of pursuing a degree in Hospitality/Culinary Arts! Along with some neighbors, my family were the taste testers for this quirky adventure.
Here is the methodology used for each taste test:
• 5 taste testers
• blind taste tests: testers were not shown the product labels or prices
• a pair of products: one national brand item and one store brand item
• 5 judging attributes: color, texture, taste, aroma, general appeal and overall satisfaction
• 3 possible responses: Poor, OK Excellent – each assigned points (1, 2, 3 respectively)
• Tally the points from each evaluator and then for each product overall
• The products with the most points deemed the winner of each tasting pair
In this, the first of four taste test posts, I’ll reveal the results of a head to head taste test of two brands of chunky blue cheese dressing. The opponents were:
- Dressing #1: Wegmans Blue Cheese Dressing, Chunky Style
- Dressing #2: Marzetti Blue Cheese Dressing, Chunky Style
After testing each one with celery sticks as dippers, the testers recorded their scores and comments. Which one prevailed? The store brand or the better-known name brand?
…THE WINNER IS:
Wegmans Blue Cheese Dressing, Chunky Style, by a whopping 17 points!
The table shown above details the points awarded by each evaluator/taste tester. Their names have been kept secret to protect their identity – these taste test wars can get pretty scrappy! Note that the Wegmans store brand was preferred by 4 out of the 5 taste testers.
What do you think? Do you have a preference of chunky blue cheese salad dressings?
Our next taste test will reveal the winner of a battle or root beer soda brands. Stay tuned…