Taste test: eggnog

Serving size Half-cup Half-cup Half-cup
Calories 200 200 180
Fat/Fiber 9g / 0g 9g / 0g 9g / 0g
Sugars/Sodium 23g / 75mg 20g / 100mg 21g / 75mg
Carbs/Protein 25g / 6g 26g / 5g 22g / 4g


Even in warm December weather, Floridians have no problem bringing on the eggnog during the holidays. The creamy and sometimes frothy beverage combines heavy texture with lots of spice. Our panelists have been eager to try some of the brands offered in local grocery stores this time of year. We recently sampled six brands of eggnog at our annual Taster's Choice holiday gathering.

Kathy Saunders, Times correspondent

Product/Score

(out of 100)
Borden 72Southern

Comfort 61
T.G. Lee 53
Judges'

comments
Pale color and strong flavors gave this eggnog an edge over the others. "It's not too thick and I love the taste of vanilla and nutmeg," said one judge. She added, "Hand me the rum." Another said, "It's really pleasantly balanced." A judge who liked the sweetness of the blend said it would be especially good as a mixer. "Add some rum or brandy or Jack Daniels and this works," he said.Panelists found plenty of comfort in this eggnog blend, enjoying the bold color, rich cream taste and texture "with ridges of savory fat." Another described the color as "peachy looking," saying the nog had a heavy, egg yolk taste that mixed well with the spices. "Where's the Jack?" she asked. Two panelists liked the taste of the eggnog but complained about the thickness. "It's more like a vanilla sauce," said one. The other said it was too thick to drink but would be delicious if it was thinned out, "perhaps with an alcoholic beverage."This brand was especially creamy and very sweet. "The smooth flavor is subtle and the spices are not overpowering," said one judge. "A little doctoring would make it terrific." Another described this eggnog as "classic," praising the pale yellow/beige color, nice balance of nutmeg and vanilla and rich, but not-too-thick texture. "I think this would be great with booze," said a judge who said she would buy this brand.
Would

they buy?
All four judges said yes.Two of the four judges said yes.Three of the four judges said yes.
Shopping information$4.92 for a half-gallon from Walmart.$2.50 for a quart from Walmart.$2.98 for a quart from Walmart.


Also Sampled: Publix ($2.19 for a quart, 34 points); Sweetbay ($3.79 for a half-gallon, 44 points); and Winn-Dixie ($3.79 for a half-gallon, 35 points).

Panelists: Janet K. Keeler, Times food and travel editor; Julie Overton, consumer and mother of four; Jeff Jensen, public information officer for the city of Treasure Island; and Laura Reiley, Times food critic. All brands were tasted blind.

Send suggestions for product testing to: Taste section, Tampa Bay Times, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731 or email them to jkeeler@tampabay.com. Please put TEST SUGGESTION in the subject line. To read past Taster's Choice columns, go to food.tampabay.com.

Taste test: eggnog 12/11/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, December 11, 2012 10:54am]

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