Saturday 23 July 2016

York Pies - Shambles

Ye Olde Pie & Sausage Shoppe Pie Reviews - The Shambles, York

On a recent visit to the Viking city of York I was pleased to find a proper, traditional pie shop in the heart of the city. The narrow street called The Shambles is rich in history. Some of the timber framed buildings date back to the 14th century. It is also rich in pie history with the street having previously been packed with butcher's shops. There is a high kerb running down the street. I heard was so the blood and gore could flow away down the centre of the street.... a bit different to your modern supermarket meat aisle! The street is now primarily focused on tourists with gift shops and quaint cafes. Fortunately one shop is tapping into the street's heritage, they don't even have a sign, just a picture of a pie hanging from the side of the shop. Ye Olde Pie & Sausage Shoppe has a lovely display of pies sitting proudly in the window. They also had some interesting flavours so I couldn't restrict myself to only trying one. Many of them were in the style of a pork pie and could be eaten cold but they also had pies that they could heat up for you to eat straight away. I grabbed a Scotch Pie to have hot for £1.50 then to have later I got a Pork & Black Pudding and a Wild Boar pie at £1.70 and £2.00 respectively.

Some of the pies they had made themselves and some of them were brought in. This really showed as I have never had such a mixed experience from one shop.

York Viking Pie

Pork & Black Pudding

pork and black pudding pie
The pork and black pudding pies and the wild boar were both clearly premium, hand-made products in excellent Condition. As you can see from the picture, the rustic appearance fit in perfectly in the Viking banquet reconstructed in the Yorkshire Museum (which was well worth a visit by the way). They had ample golden glaze giving a delicious Colour. Something I always look for in a good pork pie is a bit of a crunch to the pastry unlike the soggy fare from mass produced pies. This pie did not disappoint being incredibly crunchy. This must have been made for strong Viking jaws. At one point I wondered if I had accidentally picked up one of the fake loaves of bread from the banqueting table.

The Content certainly a bit different to your average pork pie. Instead of jelly the pie relied on the black pudding to give keep it moist. It had quiet a pungent aroma which reminded me of charcuterie and was slightly over powering. I did enjoy the black pudding which added a bit of variety which is normally lacking for a pork pie. It was let down by some of the pig meat being a bit Chewy. It had a decent sized capacity and for a premium product at a premium location, £1.70 seemed relatively Cheap.

Pork & Black Pudding (Ye Olde Pie & Sausage Shoppe [YO1 7LX])

Wild Boar
york wild boar pie

The Wild Boar pie looked like it had the same pastry that the Pork & Black Pudding but if anything it was even more crunchy! The pastry actually squeaked against my teeth in a very peculiar way and bordered on being a bit dry. It was a bit softer on the inside and somehow it just about worked. This pie was helped by having an excellent Content. The wild boar was cured in big, salty pink chunks that tasted a bit like gammon. The pieces of meat were firm which gave plenty to get your teeth into. There was a lot of jelly in all the gaps which kept it moist and held the fragmented filling together like a delicious glue. As you can see from the photo, it was very greasy, turning the bag translucent, like all good pork pies should! It was a bit different to your average pork pie but overall the unique Consistency worked. Another Pierate Recommended Wild Boar pie to add to a surprisingly long list

Wild Boar (Ye Olde Pie & Sausage Shoppe [YO1 7LX])

ye olde pie & sausage shoppe

Scotch Pie

Last and definitely least was the Scotch pie. It was by far the worst Scotch pie I have ever had. You may be aware that I am quite a fan of Scotch pies, having reviewed a fair few in my search for what makes the best Scotch pie. It is relatively rare to find one in England so I thought I had to go for it but soon regretted it. There was nothing too it really. I bit into it and the lid sunk down to the base because there was barely any filling. The pastry was too dry and not enjoyable to eat. Whilst the filling was very moist, there just wasn't enough of it to soften the pastry. The filling wasn't unpleasant to eat but seemed quite watery and runny. I think it was probably beef but it was hard to say for sure. I couldn't really find anything good to say about this pie so it unfortunately goes to the bottom of our Scotch pie rankings. The only saving grace for Ye Olde Pie & Sausage Shoppe is that they didn't actually make this one, having bought it in from catering giants Bako.

Beef Scotch Pie (Ye Olde Pie & Sausage Shoppe [YO1 7LX])

york scotch pie

The Scotch pie was one blip on an otherwise very enjoyable trip to York. It is a fine city with lots of interesting history, particularly Roman and Viking. Sadly the Jorvick viking museum was closed due to the terrible flooding they experienced in 2015. Due to reopen in 2017, they are trying to meet some of the cost via crowd funding, I might have to pay another visit when they reopen but will know to avoid the Scotch pie next time.


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