A Celebration of British Charcuterie
Charcuterie, specially prepared meat products [primarily using pork], is a growing niche in the food market. There has been an increase in the artisan production of charcuterie (including black pudding) in the UK with traditional cured products and new innovative variations now available in our supermarkets, butchers, delicatessens as well as being offered on many restaurant and pub menus.
Preparing charcuterie however requires skill, patience and attention to detail. Curing, smoking, drying, seasoning, whatever the process, it takes time and discipline as any mistakes can render your high quality ingredients inedible. Quality charcuterie involves understanding your ingredients, a high level of butchery skill (nose-to-tail) and a knowledge of age-old, traditional preservation methods or contemporary production techniques.
At the beginning of 2018 BritishCharcuterie.live, co-founded by Henrietta Green and Charlotte Sharpe-Neal, launched the first national British Charcuterie Awards to celebrate the best of British charcuterie.
The purpose of the Awards is to recognise the excellence and range of British Charcuterie from traditional to continental-style, to encourage sales, to publicise to the general public and to the trade the increase in British Charcuterie production, and to promote British Charcuterie both in its own right and as a worthy alternative to foreign imports.
Naturally, the awards attracted our attention especially given there is a class for ‘British Regional Products’ which includes Black Pudding, White Pudding and Hogs Pudding.
Share the Passion for Black Pudding
As you know, our aim at BlackPudding.Club is to share a passion for black pudding, a common goal we hold with those who produce, sell or serve it. The BBC Countryfile Live event, which will host the British Charcuterie Awards, last year attracted in excess of 120,000 visitors over the 4 days. It is therefore a fantastic opportunity for Producers to showcase the best of British & Irish black pudding at the event, engaging the public and gaining recognition from peers.
On behalf of BritishCharcuterie.live, we would like to invite our business members and followers of the BlackPudding.Club [farmers, artisans, butchers, charcuterie, chefs / restaurants] to take part in the event. With a focus on traditionally British products, the event (as well as your business) will greatly benefit through your participation.
There are two specific classes that will be of interest for pudding producers:
To ensure the widest possible exposure for both your business and your products once they are entered into the British Charcuterie Awards, BritishCharcuterie.live have devised a national and local press and social media campaign to bring British Charcuterie to the forefront of the consumer’s attention.
Date & Venue
The event is taking place in the British Charcuterie Tent at BBC Countryfile Live, to be held at Blenheim Palace from 2nd to 5th August 2018. Live judging for the British Charcuterie Awards will take place on Thursday 2nd August.
The British Charcuterie Awards will be judged by a panel of experts with John Gower of Quiet Waters Farm and NY Charcuterie Masters as Head Judge and a selection of charcuterie specialists and buyers, industry leaders, chefs and journalists to ensure informed and fair judging with the fullest possible feedback for your products.
The list of judges include Angela Hartnett, Chris Galvin, Stéphane Reynaud, Prue Leith, Felicity Cloake, Xanthe Clay, David Lidgate and Monika Linton.
There will be three levels of winners [Gold, Silver & Bronze] based on the points products have been awarded with a maximum of a possible 100 points. Points will be awarded for the following:
- Appreciation of innovation and excellence | Possible Total = 10
- Pre-taste | Possible Total = 30
- Eating qualities | Possible Total = 60
More information about the judging criteria.
How to Enter
Entry is via the BritishCharcuterie.live website. You may enter as many products and/or classes as you wish
– Pricing & Entry Form – with discounts available for multiple entries. Everyone who enters the British Charcuterie Awards will be offered one pair of free tickets for BBC Countryfile Live 2018 worth £60.00 for Thursday August 2 – the day of the Awards judging.
There are 9 category classes into which products may be entered to win an award.
Based on the whole muscle, these are cured and air-dried products that may or may not be cold-smoked. This class includes traditional product such as Prosciutto-style hams, Lomo, cold-smoked duck breasts or Coppa etc..
Based on the whole muscle these need cooking – roasted, boiled, baked or hot-smoked – before eating. This class includes cooked hams, salt beef etc..
These are traditional Salami and other ground meat products that may or may not be cold-smoked.
These need cooking – typically poached or hot-smoked – before eating. This class includes Bologna, Mortadella, Luncheon Meats and hot-smoked Kielbasa etc..
These are made from cured and/or preserved meats. This class includes Pates, Parfaits, Potted Meats and Rillettes as well as products such as ’Nduja, Lard, Sobresada etc..
These may be green, cold- or hot-smoked but will need cooking before eating. This class includes streaky, shoulder or back bacon as well as rashers from other meats, poultry and game such as beef, duck etc..
This class includes any traditional British regional recipes such as Hogs Pudding, Black Pudding, White Pudding, Haslett, Faggots, Bath Chaps, Lincolnshire Chine etc..
This class includes any cured products made in a restaurant, hotel or pub kitchen by the kitchen staff for serving within their own restaurants and bars.
Supported by Rare Breed Survival Trust & Slow Food in the UK. Meat used in this class must be traceable and from registered stock pedigree parents. All entries will be authenticated by RBST. This class is open to all products included in classes 1-8 of the British Charcuterie Awards.
Following the product category classes, there are 2 further awards to be made:
- Champion of Champions Product
- Chosen from classes 1 to 9 entrants, all products achieving Gold (scoring 80+ points out of a possible 100) will automatically be put forward for The Champion of Champions Product.
- Champion of Champions Producer
- Chosen from classes 1 to 9 entrants, the winner will be awarded to the producer who performs best consistently over a number of classes – no less than 3 products – spread over a minimum of 3 classes.
UPDATE: Summer 2020 – Details regarding the latest Awards are per the links below…