Cheshire Smokehouse

Morely Green

Smokehouse Food Travel 00026

A cluster of red-brick outhouses in the Cheshire hamlet of Morley Green seems an unlikely home for one of the region’s top delis, but step inside the farm shop of this 112-year-old family-run business and you’ll find some of the finest condiments, cures and artisanal produce for miles.

Established by John Ward in 1907, after his return to Manchester from Canada where he learned to smoke meat, Cheshire Smokehouse is a place of sweet-smelling stoves and traditional brick kilns almost identical to Ward’s original ovens. From these come meat and fish of all kinds, many prepared according to the founder’s own recipes. Heady fillets of Cheshire-farmed Wincle trout and sherry-marinated duck breasts laced with piquant flavours of oak and beech chippings are house specialities.

Walk beneath the shop’s hanging hams to find shelves packed with thick-cut molasses, chunky sourdough loaves, formidably sized pork pies and a vast array of cheeses, including mould-ripened Burt’s cheeses from Knutsford and creamy, oak-smoked Cheddar. A colourful display of fresh fruit and veg takes centre stage, including a selection of less usual suspects – pineberries, for example. Plump Wilmslow pork sausages and saucer-sized burgers are produced at the on-site butchery, which also turns out bulky cuts of 28 day-aged Cheshire beef and game meats such as purple-red breasts of locally sourced pigeon, pheasant and wild duck.

Tart accompaniments for the smoky flavours on offer include Tracklements Dill Mustard Sauce and Barrel & Bone sauerkraut. And veteran smoker Darren Ward, John’s great-grandson, is unlikely to let you leave without a bag of Cheshire Smokehouse hickory-smoked almonds. Finally, delve into the bottle aisle to discover more than 400 wines, beers and spirits, carefully chosen by ever-helpful wine expert Philip Beavan. His long experience, almost 30 years, more than qualifies him to pick that perfect oaked Soave to pair with your smoked kippers.

Smokehouse Food Travel 00026

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