Monday, 7 July 2014

Bray's Cottage Pork Pie at London's Brompton Food Market

Brompton Food Market - Bray's Cottage Pork Pie Review


Food delis tend to be pretty upmarket but Brompton Food Market in affluent South Kensington is one of the most posh. We love to try a broad range of pies, some cheaper, some more expensive as you never know which are going to be the best value for money. I thought I simply had to try one of the pork pies on offer at Brompton Food Market, at £3.50 for a small pie I was expecting something good. There were a few variations on offer but I decided to go for the standard pork pie. They said they are made by a company called Bray's Cottage. See below for a breakdown of the score.

Brays Cottage Pork Pie

Condition – 6.5 out of 7 – Very nice indeed, a lovely zigzag pattern around the top and some odd holes which look like air vents but aren’t. There wasn’t much that could be improved in the condition. I don’t often say this for a cold pie but this pie had a lovely, spicy aroma.

Colour – 6.8 out of 7 – I really liked the glossy golden colour to this one. There was nice variation in the glazing which made it look handmade (but I don’t know if it was) and there was some evidence on the outside as to the juicy filling on the inside.

Cheapness – 3.0 out of 7 – For an individual sized pork pie this just wasn’t cheap at all but you do get what you pay for. This is good quality pork.

Capacity – 5.8 out of 7 – The pie was quite tall so the capacity was large for its size. It was completely full of content.

Chewiness – 6.4 out of 7 – There was a great texture to this pie, only one tiny chewy piece. The pastry was softer than many pork pies but still had a really satisfying crunch to the outside. The filling was granular and not at all mushy. This pie didn't seem to have any jelly but was still very moist.

Content – 5.9 out of 7 – This pie was filled with proper grey pork meat rather than cured pork, in a similar way to a Melton Mowbray Pork Pie. Although, there did also seem to be some pink bits to it which I now realise is because they mix in some smoked bacon! This is a nice touch and makes this pie stand out. The pork had some of the best flavour I have ever had in a pork pie. I was however expecting it to have a bit more spice to it. Maybe it is because they didn’t want to hide the flavour of the meat but for me, I like a bit more of a peppery taste. There was a really great flavour to the pastry. I am not sure what they used to glaze it but there was almost a sweetness to the taste which I loved.

Consistency – 6.5 out of 7 – This really worked well as a package, in many departments I would say this would be my ultimate pork pie.

Brays Cottage Pork Pie Cross-section

Overall, a really very good pie from Brompton Food Market. However, for £3.50 it seemed a bit much, for me it is hard for any individual pork pie to justify such a price, no matter how good it is. I would expect the best I have ever tasted. In fact, it almost was the best I have ever tasted so not a bad effort. The seasoning is probably a personal preference anyway. If you can find these pies sold elsewhere, perhaps a bit cheaper, then they are well worth a try.

Pork Pie (Brompton Food Market/Bray’s Cottage)
Score: 5.84/7
SJL


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1 comment:

  1. Hi,

    Sarah from Bray's Cottage Pork Pies here. Thanks so much for such a lovely review, glad you liked our pie! I thought I'd tell you about the markings on the top of the pie (pie fact!). We have to know what variety each pie is so we have a different mark for each flavour. Four holes is Naked (our take on a traditional pork pie), two holes is Chilli, one hole is Onion Marmalade (our most popular so the quickest mark to make, little efficiencies in a hand made process are much appreciated when we're busy!), C is Chorizo, * is Lemon, Parsley and Garlic etc etc.

    There's a full key of all the marks and flavours on the website if you ever find yourself with several of our pies and have forgotten which is which. http://www.perfectpie.co.uk/useful-pie-info/

    We do, as you mentioned, have to make a hole in the pie otherwise the lids try and levitate about the pie when they are baking in our oven (which is a big bread oven which I think helps the pastry look and taste so good).

    The price of our pies do vary (usually reflecting how much rent and rates the shop has to pay!). I'm so glad you went to Brompton Food Market, it is new and an amazing treasure trove shop full of wonderful food. Luke, the owner, is very supportive of small "real" businesses. And it has a lovely garden out the back to have a spot of lunch - which makes it a bit of a treasure in the Museum district of London. If you are ever near South Ken tube it's a good place to make a beeline for.

    Thanks so much again for your kind words about the pies.

    Sarah x

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