There’s an awful lot of bacon on the market. If you’re a pig farmer you’re in a race against shelflife, you’ve got just a few days from slaughter to get your porkers sold to customers. For many farmers that’s why bacon and ham production becomes attractive. The loin and belly can be preserved as streaky and back bacon, the back legs for hams and that’s most of the animal taken care of and good to be stored for several weeks at least. The more salt and sugar you can get in to your pork the longer it will keep generally, if you can get more water into it in the form of brine then the weight increases and you’ve got more meat to sell.
None of the above makes for very exciting food on your plate, who wants to eat bacon that’s borne of nothing more than extending shelflife and adding weight? Surely what you want is something borne of a passion to make amazing food, to take a piece of good fresh pork and through careful butchery and painstaking curing make it into something amazing.
Andrew, Christine and Will Smith (that’s Andrew there) have been rearing their own free range pigs to the highest standards of welfare for the last 20 years. They prepare a variety of traditional butcher’s counter products including staggeringly good Dry Cured Honey Roast Hams and the best bacon we’ve ever tasted. We’re delighted to include their bacon on our menu, it’s succulent with the right amount of fat to it, has a deep flavour from the quality of pork they use and real texture from the traditional dry cure.
Click here to order the best bacon there is.
John Torode blind tasted our Sirloin of Welsh Beef for the Observer Food Monthly yesterday and rated it above Donald Russell, Sainsbury’s and Waitrose with 5 stars!
“A good old hunk of decent aged beef. It has a nice bite and a grassy aftertaste. It tastes over 20 months old, which is how old beef should be. Very tasty. 5 stars”
Read the full taste test here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2009/apr/26/roast-lunches-john-torode
Eric Chavot, holder of two Michelin stars at The Capital restaurant, was equally impressed with our 5 star Toulouse Sausages.
“Ooh yes, the meat’s nice and coarse. A good ratio of fat to everything else. Herby and flavoursome. 5 stars”
He also rated our Creamed Potato with Black Truffle best of the bunch of mashes on offer.
“The truffle is a wacky addition. But it’s nice and really does flavour the potato, and there’s some nice seasoning and butter in here, too. If you like truffle, well, I imagine you’ll like this. 4 stars”
Read Eric’s taste test in full here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2009/apr/26/sausages-mash
Make sure you’re signed up to our mailing list and we’ll send you exclusive preview details of our summer 2009 pinic menu later this week. All we’re saying now is that there are three different styles, all prepared by our restaurant chefs including everything you could need for a gourmet party in the park. As far we know we’re the only company in the UK preparing proper, fresh picnics for home delivery. You’ll not eat better this summer.
A complete, fresh gourmet picnic hamper, delivered to your door
We also have a wealth of seasonal produce that we have sourced especially for you this May, including free range English guinea Fowl, new pies from Simple Simon, Pork and London Pride Ale sausages from Smithfield market, Gooseberry & Elderflower Tarts from Popina bakery and a fabulous Caerphilly from Neal’s Yard Dairy. Sign up to our mailing list to join in with our online preview or check the website from Friday to shop from the full range.
Free Range English Guinea Fowl
We’ve been hosting some preview evenings at Formans Restaurant ahead of our opening later this month. To register for the first bookings please call 0208 5252 365. In the meantime, here are some pictures to give you a flavour of how the restaurant will look.
The kitchen, where the magic will happen!
View from across the River Lea, the restaurant is on the first floor, above the smokehouse.