Local butchers and bakers triumph in awards

Bruce of the Broch has bounded away with another three Gold Awards to add to the string of awards already held by the local butcher and baker shop as on January 6, the Scotch Pie Club announced the winners of the 2011 Scotch Pie Competition.

Bruce of the Broch has won awards every year during the last eleven years since the Scotch Pie Club annual competition has been running and this year was no different with a Gold award for their Bridies, another Gold award for their Sausage Rolls and a Gold second runner up for their hand held Steak Pies.

Alistair Bruce told the Herald: "I am fair chuffed to have won these awards. Unlike some of the businesses that enter into these competitions we do not make up new products especially for competitions, we enter products that we sell, our customers have been buying them and can continue to buy them, all of our winning products are made with our own traditional recipe."

Bruce of the Broch is no stranger to winning competitions and customers can see some of the sixty or so awards already won by the shop displayed on the shop walls and, as room was running out on the walls a digital picture frame was brought in to assist, it flits between pictures of some of the awards and historical pictures of the firm.

Bert Fowlie Butchers in Strichen have been awarded Gold for their steak and haggis pie in the prestigious World Scotch Pie Competition organised by the Scotch Pie Club.

Winning entries were announced on January 6, 2011 at a ceremony in Dunfermline and Mr Fowlie explained that he would normally have attended the award ceremony however due to demands of the business he had been unable to go on this occasion and only discovered that he had won a gold award once he had finished work on Thursday evening.

Speaking to the Herald on Friday Mr Fowlie explained that he hoped he would receive his certificate soon. He said: "I know that the Scotch Pie Club only issue awards to those who really deserve it. I am very proud that the business has been given this prestigious award and when I receive the certificate it will be given pride of place in the shop."

The idea and recipe for the gold winning steak and haggis pie came from Mr Fowlie's employees, Hazel Thom and Sandra Milne, who look after the bakery side of the business.

Hazel and Sandra explained that they were looking at making "something different", made with good "wholesome ingredients available to purchase in the shop" but that they also wanted the final product to be something "traditional" and so they came up with the idea of the steak and haggis pie. They told the Herald they were "delighted that the pie had won such an award."

Mr Fowlie added: "I am really proud of my staff, they do an excellent job. The pie is an excellent alternative to the traditional Burns Supper."

The business that employs 27 staff and already supplies 26 shops in the Buchan area with their products will hope that this award will increase demand for their products as previous winners have noted increases in orders by as much as 30%.

Judging for the 2011 competition took place at Carnegie College in Dunfermline on November 16, 2010, with the winners due to be announced at an award ceremony luncheon on November 30, 2010. Unfortunately, the award ceremony had to be postponed due to the adverse weather at the time but was rescheduled and held on Thursday January 6, 2011.