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Hugh's good meat guide

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Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall recently sampled premium meat for Observer Food Monthly.

The results suggest that we know who makes Tesco Finest Pork Pies and show that the Producers make more than than good sausages.

It seemed that the test was limited to a few top quality producers and premium lines from the quality supermarkets.

Cumberland sausages

Richard Woodall - 4 stars

"White peppery smell up front; authentic seasoning for a sausage. Very good."

Sainsburys Taste the Difference - 4 stars

"Not a bad sausage. Not such a great smell as the others but decent seasoning and not too finely textured. Herby and mildly peppery."

Brown Cow Organics - 4 stars

"Great natural casing, sweet herby smell and lovely pork but its a bit too lean. It isnt as peppery as the others, but is tasty."

Real Meat Company - 4 stars

"Excellent coarse texture, herby smell and natural casing. Nice pork, a touch under seasoned but the quality shows through."

Donald Russell - 3 stars

"Slightly odd bouncy texture. Somewhat over-seasoned."

Pork pies

Dickinson & Morris - 4 stars

"Good lardy hot water crust. You can see the texture of the meat, it isnt a pate. Grey meat because they rightly havent used nitrites. A lovely pie."

Tesco Finest - 4 stars

"This is identical to the last one, same pastry, same three hole pattern on the lid. Either they are from the same producer, or there is some great industrial espionage going on."

Unsmoked dry-cured back bacon

Graig Farm Organics - 4 stars

"A fine, sweet cure with plenty of good pork flavour. Really tasty."

Real Meat Company - 3 stars, Tesco Finest - 2 stars, Sainsburys Taste the Difference - 1 star

Lincolnshire sausages

Real Meat Company - 3 stars

"Definitely a natural casing and it has a really good consistency. This stands out as a good sausage."

Waitrose - 3 stars

"The texture looks good but the taste is a little sweet and a little bland."

M&S Butchers Choice - 2 stars

"I dont think the casing is natural. Its a bit cakey and sweet, but there are some good, real herb flavours coming through."

Dickinson & Morris - 2 stars

"This looks best in the pan but it isnt exciting to taste. Its unadventurous with a pate like texture."

Smoked dry cure bacon

Graig Farm Organics - 4 stars

"Nice mild and sweet cure, could perhaps be a touch smokier but there is a good quality pork taste coming through. Its pale colour suggests it does not contain too many nitrites."

Happy Meats - 3 stars

"There is a huge layer of fat on this, which doesnt scare me but might put off some people. Its good meat, full flavoured with a little touch of sweetness and smoke. It feels home-made."

Donald Russell - 3 stars

"Sweet cure, not much smoke but still pleasant. More porky and less salty than others which I rather like."

Forman & Field - 3 stars

"Oaky smoked smell in the pan, real bacon, very meaty. It is perhaps a little too salty."

Tesco Finest - 2 stars

"A bit acidic, not much real smoky flavour but not entirely unpleasant."

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