Pimm’s and Aperol beaten by cheap supermarket-own labels in taste tests

·3-min read

Favourite summer tipples Pimm’s and Aperol have been beaten by cheap supermarket own-label copies in taste tests by consumer group Which?

Aldi beat both brands in blind taste tests in which consumers rated the flavour, “mouthfeel”, appearance and aroma of each drink.

Which? asked 101 tasters to compare Aldi’s Summer Punch (£7.49 for 70cl), Tesco’s Summer Cup (£8 for 70cl) and Pimm’s No.1, almost double the price at £15 for 70cl.

Aldi’s Summer Punch was the highest-rated overall, scoring 72%, followed by Tesco’s version (69%) and Pimm’s (67%).

Aldi’s Summer Punch (Which?/PA)
Aldi’s Summer Punch (Which?/PA)

More people picked it as their preferred drink compared to Tesco and Pimm’s, with 45% saying it was their favourite of the three.

In a separate taste test, Which? asked 100 people to rate Aperol, also £15 for 70cl, against two supermarket aperitifs from Aldi and Sainsbury’s, preparing drinks using equal parts citrus fruit-based aperitif and chilled soda water.

Tasters found that Aldi’s Aperini (£6.99 for 70cl) had the best balance between sweetness and bitterness, with a “noticeable citrusy flavour that was not too overpowering”.

The original Aperol still received an overall score of 72% but Aldi achieved 74%, while Sainsbury’s Aperitivo (£8 for 70cl) was judged to be a let-down when it came to appearance with its “peachy pale colour” and achieved 69%.

Aldi Aperini (Which?/PA)
Aldi Aperini (Which?/PA)

Which? Magazine editor Harry Rose said: “If you’re toasting the start of summer weather or a first gathering with friends and family for some time, our taste tests prove that you don’t have to pay through the nose for your favourite tipple.

“Whether you are looking for a refreshing fruit-based gin cup or citrus-based aperitif, choosing a supermarket’s own-label can save you money, and potentially get you a tastier beverage.”

Campari UK marketing director Nick Williamson said: “Which? is a respected publication, and its taste tests are a point of reference for consumers.

“As Aperol, we support comparative taste tests, as these are aimed to provide objective and clear benchmarking to assist consumers in their conscious choices.

“To offer consumers a comparative test on the best way to enjoy Aperol, it should have been run following the Official IBA recipe with a 3:2:1 ratio: three parts Prosecco, two parts Aperol, and a dash of soda water, a recipe that creates a perfectly well-balanced, refreshingly bubbly, bittersweet drink.”

Pimm’s said: “Pimm’s has been the signpost of the British summer for almost 200 years and is enjoyed by millions of people every year at BBQs, picnics and summer events.”

The findings are likely to be welcome news for Aldi, which learned last month that it is the subject of copyright infringement legal challenge by Marks & Spencer over its Cuthbert the Caterpillar cake.

M&S lodged an intellectual property claim with the High Court arguing that the similarity of Aldi’s product with its Colin the Caterpillar original leads consumers to believe they are of the same standard.

Meanwhile, Aldi’s fellow discounter Lidl was this week forced to temporarily stop selling a version of one of its own brand gins after being sued by the makers of Hendrick’s gin, who claim a trademark has been infringed.

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