One Scotch Egg, One Bourbon, One Beer: The Craft Egg Revolution
I’ve been messing about a bit on Twitter recently regarding my increasing appreciation of Scotch Eggs. Joking aside though, they’re a pretty superb bar snack: they can be bought in fresh from a good local supplier, kept in a fridge and sold to hungry customers with the minimum of serving time and presentation, but the maximum of stomach-filling proteiny goodness. This is why I write the name with two capital letters: out of respect.
Bascially if you can serve cold pies in your pub, you can serve Scotch Eggs. And frankly if you can serve pies and Scotch Eggs to drinkers, there’s pretty much a moral duty to do so. This has been picked up on by a number of the new wave of craft beer bars, including Craft Beer Co and The Gunmakers in London and the Hawkshead Beer Hall in Staveley.
When I tweeted about this at the weekend, @CarsmileSteve informed me of the remarkable range of Scotches available at Sourced Market in St Pancras Station, alongside their range of Kernel and other great beers (which they refuse to put in the fridges, instead reserving that space for several varieties of uninteresting lager. Who wants to drink a shelf-warm IPA?). When I was down in London this week I took the opportunity to pop in and buy a couple of “Black Watch” eggs, made with black pudding; which must be the Black IPA of the Scotch Egg world.
I love black pudding, to the extent that it’s a starter at our wedding. I love Scotch Eggs, to the extent that we’re going to Scotchland for our honeymoon. I am therefore pretty much ecstatic with the tasty starter I had yesterday evening: warm black pudding Scotch Eggs with homemade picalilli and a bottle of Hawkshead Brodie’s Prime. The Scotch Eggs at the Hawkshead Beer Hall are made with Brodie’s Prime, but a glass of it was an even better pairing with these: the dark roasty beer and sharp hoppiness both matched and cut through the earthy, savoury, fatty black pudding.
I considered for a fleeting moment changing the name of this blog to “The Scotch Egg Prole” and becoming number one on the Wikio Scotch Egg Blog Rankings, but @unclewilco pointed me towards Forever Eggsploring, a truly remarkable and comprehensive study of the Scotch Egg that transcends the term “Scotch Egg Blog”. It even has interviews on the subject with such celebrities as Dom Joly, Tom Kerridge and our own Dame Melissa Cole.
Not coincidentally, it appears that Craft Beer Co and Sourced Market get their classy Scotch Eggs from the same supplier: The Handmade Scotch Egg Company Limited. Have you seen their selection? Chilli Scotch Eggs; Ginger & Apricot Scotch Eggs; Scotch Whisky Eggs; Scotch Eggs rolled in crisps…
You should really be able to find a Scotch Egg fit for any beer there, from barrel-aged imperial stouts to double IPAs, with some (vegetarian? smoked salmon?) stretching the bounds of the genre. Is this the start of a craft bar snack revolution?
For further beer and Scotch Egg related larks see this post by Mark Dredge.