After reading the resuts of their findings I wanted to try some of the brands that I have not tasted myself. I went to the store today and picked up a can of Progresso Italian style whole peeled tomatoes, and a can of Tuttorosso Italian style peeled plum shaped tomatoes.
After opening both cans I was very happy to see the white plastic (?) coating on the inside of both of these cans. This is a feature I have only found in a few brands of tomatoes (one being La Regina) and I wish all the brands would use it. After trying both cans it was nice to find very little or no tin can aftertaste. I attribute this to the cans coating. Why Escalon and Stanislaus don't do this is beyond me. Still, they do still have some of the very best tasting tomatoes, so who am I to complain.
Right away I noticed that the Progresso tomatoes had much of the peel still left on and many yellow discolorations. The Tuttorosso tomatoes were all pure red with 100% usable tomato product. The consistency of the Tuttorosso was also superior. They were easy to crush, but firm, and not veiny with hard spots like the Progresso. The Tuttoroso tomatoes won out in the flavor department as well. They had a subtle sweetness and a nice pure tomato flavor. The Progresso were bland. They reminded me of a lesser grade example of the Escalon Bella Rosa tomatoes (which I also dislike). I still can't figure out why I love most of the Escalon products so much, but the Bella Rosa whole peeled tomatoes they sell are so bad. Maybe I need to try another batch.
In the end, I have to agree with Cooks Illustrated on the La Reginas, the Pastene, and the Tuttoroso, but definitely not on the Progresso. The only explanation I can find for the Progresso beating out these other great brands is the fact that cans of tomatoes can vary so greatly from batch to batch even within the same product.
One last thing, the Progresso cost more at 1.69 a can with the Tuttorosso only costing .99.