Bakers beat butchers in first pie awards

Butchers faced off against the bakers last week for the first national battle of the pie-makers. Unfortunately for the butchers, it was a baker that came out top in the final judging for the British Pie Awards, held in Melton Mowbray on 21 April.

Walker’s Charnwood Bakery took the overall Champion title with its Melton Mowbray Pork Pie, with pork pie specialist Dickinson & Morris, of Melton Mowbray, taking the runners-up prize for its Game Pie. The same product also took home the title of Presenters’ Choice.

The bakers did not have it all their own way, however, with Learmonth Butchers winning the Savoury Hot category with its Chicken, Haggis and Peppercorn Pie and Boghall Butchers taking the fish category with its Cod with White Wine Pie. Brockleby’s farm shop also took the title in the Other Pasty category with its Poacher’s Game Pasty.

The competition attracted more than 500 entries, taking the organisers, the Melton Mowbray Pork Pie Association, by surprise, said chairman Matthew O’Callaghan. “We were expecting around 200 entries for this first event, so having over 500 was a big logistical challenge, but I think it went well on the day.”

He said that while the bakers may have taken the overall title on the day, the butcher entries put up an excellent showing. “Some of the butchers’ pies were extremely well represented and one would hope that a butcher’s pie eventually will take the pie of pies title in the future.”

However, while the number of entries was high, O’Callaghan expressed concerns over the standard of some. “The quality of some of the pies entered was not high – some were almost raw underneath. People should really taste their pies before putting them into a national competition like this, because some were really not up to standard.”

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