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Griffins Sultana Pasties

Sunday 6 Oct 2002

We are grateful to Fraser of blogjam for providing this week's review biscuits all the way from New Zealand. Now New Zealand is known for a great many things - rugby, lamb, mountains (hang on is this Wales again?), parrot based fauna that eat your windscreen wipers (oh no that doesn't sound like Wales), its indigenous Maori culture, making Lord of the Rings, we could go on and on - but not for its biscuits.

So it was with a certain amount of raw excitement that we opened our review packet of Griffin's Sultana Pasties. Declaring themselves to be exotic and covered in dark chocolate we were, however, instantly attracted by the name noun 'pasties', which is not something you would normally associate with biscuits. So what is the agenda for these antipodean treats? Well, small biscuit pockets filled with moist sultanas and covered in dark chocolate just about sums them up. At roughly 53 mm by 30mm these guys are quite diminutive, and there are sixteen to a pack, so it would be quite possible for two people to see the pack off comfortably.

All in all I was put in mind of a fusion between chocolate raisins and garibaldi biscuits, and this would probably be a simulation that you could try should you be unable to get hold of these rare southern hemisphere treats.

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Tuesday 1 Oct 2002

I've always thought of the Breakaway as a troubled biscuit.

Poised for a glittering career alongside its established stable mate the KitKat, the Breakaway was launched in the 1970's by the then Rowntree Mackintosh, an amalgamation itself of two companies both known as confectioners. With such brands as the KitKat and the Toffee Crisp Rowntree Mackintosh had plenty of experience of covering muchy things in milk chocolate. So amid a flurry of advertising the Breakaway was launched, an important new brand. At the end of 1980s Nestlé took over Rowntree Mackintosh.

And this is where it all started to go wrong. The Breakaway when all is said and done is a chocolate digestive. Alright its completely covered, and the milk chocolate is very nice, and there's a good bit of it, oh and the biscuit has some oats in it. But is that special enough to make you pay chocolate bar prices, for what is a chocolate biscuit by another name? And then there is its size, it simply seems to small, and leaves you feeling decidedly previous.

They used to be wrapped in thin foil and have an outer paper tube. The top surface had a pattern a bit like a parkay floor, and one of the bonus features of the Breakaway was to do a sort of brass rubbing of the pattern using the foil. As you can see from the pictures that has all changed.

If the Breakaway was an actor it would be Steve Guttenburg, to the KitKat's Tom Hanks.

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