The mother of all mince pies: A South Devon taste test

By Ross Purdy on December 12, 2016

As Christmas nears, most of South Devon’s artisan bakers and cafés add traditional mince pies to their enticing menus.

Once you’ve tried a handmade mince pie from one of our finest foodie outlets you’ll find it hard to go back to the supermarket six packs. But which mince pie is the best? Our locally-based team brought in a selection of mince pies from Salcombe, Kingsbridge and Dartmouth to put them to the test.

Traditional mince pies from seven local bakeries were compared, as follows:

  • Mangetout (Kingsbridge)
  • Butterworth’s (Kingsbridge)
  • The Bakery (Kingsbridge)
  • Saveurs (Dartmouth)
  • Dartmouth Bakery
  • Salcombe Coffee Company
  • The Bake House (Salcombe)

We also added a couple of slightly alternative mince pies to the challenge. These were:

  • Almond-topped mince pies from The Bake House (Salcombe)
  • Deep-filled brandy mince pies with a Viennese top from Dartmouth Bakery

We removed all identifying packaging so our eight jurors could take part in a fair blind taste test. Each juror tried a little (well, not such a little) piece of each one and scored it out of 10.

And the winner is…

Amongst the traditional mince pies, the winner was:

Butterworth’s Family Bakery

You may remember that Butterworth’s also won our Best South Devon Pasty Award, so congratulations to them!

You’ll find Butterworth’s about halfway up Fore Street in Kingsbridge.

How about the overall favourite?

If we allow the alternative mince pies to enter the competition, the overall winner was…

The Bake House’s almond-topped mince pie

The addition of almonds went down a treat with our jurors. Furthermore, the Bake House’s traditional (albeit crumble-topped) mince pie came second in the traditional challenge, meaning both of their mince pies were rated very highly by our team.

A foodie haven

South Devon loves to put its stamp on West Country specialities, including pasties, Devon Cream Teas, clotted-cream fudge and ice cream. But our culinary expertise doesn’t end there – home to organic producers like Riverford and the Well Hung Meat Company, renowned chefs like Mitch Tonks and Jane Baxter, and dozens of fantastic gastro-pubs, South Devon is the ideal holiday destination for those with a passion for delicious food.

Download your copy of the South Devon Cookbook

To find out more about the gastronomic delights awaiting you in our Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty:

Take a look at our free South Devon Cookbook here