Monday 22 August 2016

Lincolnshire Sausage Season #3 of 13 - Hambleton Farms - Doddington Hall Farm Shop

It’s part three of Lincolnshire Sausage Season here at Rate My Sausage, and we’re already having a ball. Hopes were high after our visit to the beautiful Doddington Hall where we found an outlet of the well-renowned Hambleton Farms butchers. We’d visited Doddington Hall to spend the day exploring the house and gardens, which were currently home to an exhibition of over 350 sculptures, all of which are for sale (if you have deep pockets). The sculptures are only there until 11th September though, so hurry ye down – the gardens are charming and the exhibition is so enjoyable. One MUST buy is the glossy brochure which contains some artist biographies, nice shots of some of the art, and best of all the price list of every single piece – and all for the bargain price of £1.50. We’ve included a selection of our photos of the art in the gardens at the end of this review, to give you some flavour of it and try to persuade you to visit. Terrific stuff.

Where To Find Them:
There are four locations where you’ll find Hambletons – we visited their Doddington Hall outlet. If you’re using SausNav use the postcode LN6 4RU. Find the farm shop thus – when you are standing in the car park across the road from the Hall, and facing it, look to the left. The shop is approximately fifty metres in that direction. Go into the shop itself and the Hambletons area is at the back of the space and to the left. Other Hambletons outlets can be found on Gaol Street, Oakham, in Beckwith Emporium at Mears Ashby in Northamptonshire and Johnsons Garden Centre near Boston. More information and also maps of the locations can be found on their website: Hambleton Farms

Opening Hours:
Monday – Saturday 9.00am – 5.00 pm
Sunday 11.00am – 4.00 pm
Bank Holidays 11.00am – 4.00 pm

We only encountered one solitary Stan but he was perfect! Smartly turned out in immaculate butcher’s duds, jolly-looking and so friendly, give this man an extra tenner this week Hambletons!

Really well balanced flavours in this sausage. The salt and pepper seasoning is absolutely spot on, it makes each mouthful scrummy but allows the herby Lincolnshire taste – the lead role of course – to shine in the spotlight. Unusually, the more of these sausages you eat the richer the flavour seems to be, it’s as if it accumulates through your meal.  Sage-y and super, I was left wishing I’d bought more than one pack.

Oh my goodness, oh my goodness! Pin your lugs back people – the skins on Hambletons’ Lincolnshire sausages are THE BEST I have found for several years. They snap so crisply when you cut into them, even the sound seems louder and lairier than other bangers. Snappier than a crocodile sandwich, obvs. Snap, snap, snap, like a pissed off doctor’s receptionist. The chop of the filling is medium-fine, which isn’t perfect for a Lincolnshire sausage and doesn’t fit with our ideal. But that’s just our own personal preference. We’ll overlook that on this occasion because OH MY GOOD LORD, these skins is perfection.

Vital Statistics:
Average Weight Uncooked = 64 grams
Average Weight Cooked = 54 grams
Meat Content = 82 %
Unusually you don’t pay for the exact weight that you purchase at this shop. Nope, instead the packs are labelled “Minimum weight 360g”, or some such. In our pack we actually came away with 386g, well over the guaranteed minimum. I like this way of selling.

Value For Money:
£4.20 for 6 sausages weighing 386 grams. This works out as £10.88 per kg and 70p per banger.
We rate this as good value for money.

The "Aah, Bisto" Factor:
Now you see, since we’ve been grilling instead of frying this part of the test has lost a lot of its significance. The aromas simply aren’t the same from a closed grill compared to the open, living, hissing frying pan. Not sure whether to stick with the healthy option or revert to type and dig out the pan again. What do you think?

The Imaginatively Titled Next Day Cold Sausage Test:
There were none left for next day nibbling.

And Finally, Esther:
Visit the hall and take some sausages home with you. Please. And when you cut into these superb skins, look towards Lincolnshire and thank us.

 Please enjoy some pictures of the exhibition:


1 comment:

Vinogirl said...

Oh my God, just sitting here having a cup of Earl Grey and some choccy fingers, so feeling good, but the sight of those sausages with the onion gravy has made me very dissatisfied with the contents of my tummy right now!!!