TOPVALU Pork & Chicken Winner / 
トップバリュ ポーク&チキンウインナー

Before writing about the this Pork & Chicken Winner, I'd like to explain what TOPVALU is.

TOPVALU is a private brand which focuses on cheaper product with same quality as other makers, and there're other private brands nowadays.

Back in 1974, to make a protest against makers' one-sided price increase on cup noodle, they began to develop its original products.
They also reviewed and cut distribution channels to provide customers cheaper houseware including foods, furniture, electricity and etc.

The name TOPVALU is a combined word of TOP and VALUE.
They wanted to show that this brand created products which have both massive low price but high quality.

TOPVALU holds 8 brands and this Pork & Chicken Winner is from TOPVALU BESTPRICE (as you can imagine, BESTPRICE is another coined word of BEST + PRICE).

Now, the review of the Pork & Chicken Winner.
On the package, there's a nutshell how they curbed the cost.
Regular sausages, brats, and winners use sheep's gut to hold the meat (pork or beef), but this winner uses a skin which is made from collagen.
Also to decrease the raw material cost, they mixed chicken with pork.

When I looked at this package, I didn't see much difference in the winners from regular pork or beef 100% brats. 

The skin looked artificial and as if it was a kid's toy; too smooth and matte as regular ones have a little bit more shiny or greasy and uneven color/shade of skin.

I like to grill it than boil, so I put some winners in a pan and stir-fried.
The way skin cracked was exactly the same and the flavor from the pan was great.

About 5 minutes later, they're cooked well and ready to try.
First bite, I just thought the skin wasn't same as the sheep's gut.
This collagen skin was chewy, hard to bite off and didn't have the crisp I was expecting.
Taste of the meat was less flavorful.

It's difficult to express but to put it all together; no meaty flavor, not greasy, not crispy but chewy skin.

Those who prefers lighter and plain winners may like this, but as I usually enjoy the regular sausages, this was a little bit too bland.

I still have half of them so I may chop them into tiny pieces and use them for omelet or fried rice.

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