News from the Cellar Door: A royal encounter

News from the Cellar Door is our blog from Nick Brake, who created the Rutland Charcuterie Company, selling delicious smoked and preserved meats across the East Midlands.

A lot has happened since our first blog. Our EHO has granted our Butchery and Production Kitchen full approval – great news after months of getting everything into order and just brilliant that we now have the green light to supply wholesale to the trade. Hopefully you will start to see some of our products stocked in local delis and served up on local menus.

We have also taken delivery of a new large maturing cabinet that has doubled our capacity to produce our air-dried meats and salamis. Our first batch of Bresaola, Coppa and Noix de Jambon were ready last week and featured on our stall at the Nottingham Park Market last Sunday and at the special Farmers Market in Oakham on Monday.

It’s wonderful to be adding more air-dried products to our range especially considering the amount of time it’s taken to perfect them over the past several months. These meats complement our Duck Prosciutto, Pancetta and Salamis perfectly and seem to have gone down extremely well judging by the favourable comments we have received.

It’s certainly the air-dried products that excite me the most. This ancient method of food preservation continues to amaze me. The intensity of flavour and colour of the meat that develops during the curing and drying process is astonishing, everything becomes so much deeper and richer. We are fortunate nowadays to have the technology that allows us to back up time-honoured techniques and to produce these products professionally, safe in the knowledge that we can supply food that is fit for the end consumer. Products as good as these are certainly worth the wait.

cured meat

Talking of Farmers Markets, we had some very special visitors on Monday as HRH The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall visited Oakham. We were honoured to be invited to have a stall at a special market put on for them in The Market Place. Large crowds gathered and lined the streets in anticipation of their arrival around lunchtime. They both walked through the Market Place, stopping to talk to stall holders, shop owners as well as members of the public.

We were delighted when Prince Charles made his way over to our stall and spent several minutes chatting to us. We were keen to impart our passion for British Charcuterie and he certainly seemed to share our enthusiasm. It was great to hear him recommend our Biltong to someone in the crowd! We were thrilled that he accepted a goody bag which included a Rutland Smokie, some seriously delicious Duck Prosciutto and a bag of our Biltong – we hope he enjoyed it.
The Duchess also paid us a visit and she was keen to know more about how we had set up the business. She was particularly interested in our Hot Smoked Duck Breast.

It’s not every day that you get the opportunity to shake hands with a future King, let alone spend time with him talking about your new business venture, especially one that is still such a fledgling company. It’s certainly given us a spring in our step and I’m delighted for everyone here and for The Rutland Charcuterie Company itself. All in all a great day – the sun was shining and we did get some great photos!

You’ll find us at The Oakham Farmers Market in Gaol Street on the Saturday 16th August 8:30am – 2pm and The Park Market, Newcastle Circus, The Park, Nottingham on the Sunday 31th August 11am – 3pm. Or why not come and see us and pick up some goodies direct from the cellar door (Fridays til 5pm, or by appointment at any other time. Please phone beforehand if you are looking for something specifically).

Thanks for reading!

Cheers for now, Nick

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