Wednesday 6 July 2011
A H Butler - March - Pork Sausage
So to the third and final butcher in the market town of March, Cambridgeshire. Previously…one good – very good, and one bad – oh so very, very bad. March’s entire sausage-reputation is in the hands of a shop called A H Butler, address 126 High Street. Don’t let your town down, Mister Butler….
The shop is currently run by a third generation Mister Butler – Martin Butler to be precise. A very genial, open chap who certainly knows his onions! His father was Harold, who ran the shop before Martin, and the original Butler of the shop-sign fame is Arthur Henry Butler. The pork sausage recipe that we’re trying in this review has remained unaltered since old Arthur Henry’s day.
Martin was most fascinated by the Rate My Sausage project. Slightly disarmingly, he told me “We had another one of your sort here a couple of years ago!” I enquired further of course, and discovered that the legendary Pork Pie News had purchased a pie there previously, no doubt to be written about in a Stephen Fry-esque manner, and judged to seven decimal places. It’s what they do, and it’s very entertaining, in a nerdy, but knowledgeable way (heck, who am I to accuse others of being nerdy about food? I measure sausage shrinkage To The Gram!). The Pork Pie News visitor was much more professionally equipped than me, with a tripod for the camera….and a proper camera with big pointy lens-things. Bloody elitists!
Anyway, back to the bangers. Just how did Arthur Henry’s third generation recipe fare?
75%. It’s another “at least”. They taste very porky. Actually, VERY porky. Very impressed with these sausages, and I’d buy them again if I ever pass through March.
The seasoning is understated, but this is a very tasty sausage. It’s a shame for March that the two best butchers are not in the town centre, and the bloody awful Meat Market Sex Shop gets trade just from its location. If Butler’s or Betts’ moved in next door they would be out of business within a month. Butlers’ bangers have a light flavour that makes them a perfect part of your Sunday morning fry-up.
Whereas the flavour is subtle, the texture is feisty, strong and challenging. And therefore rather blooming good. Coarse, crumbly, just how we likes ‘em. Delightfully held together, such that when you slice through you can see all the ingredients inside, and they seem to be inviting you to tuck in. Exceptional.
Average weight uncooked - 65g
Average weight cooked - 53g
Shrinkage - 19%
Less than 20% seems to be rather good this year.
Value For Money:
£2.12 for four sausages, weighing 259g - this works out as a price of £8.19 per kg, or 53p per snorker. Fifty three pence sounds expensive. Indeed, only two sausages have cost more so far in 2011. But you must balance cost against quality. So, on balance, I’d class Butler’s bangers as “good” value for money.