The Hartington Sausage’s creation is a wonderful story of small, local businesses working together. This delicious specialty blue cheese sausage was created when The Village Stores Hartington and the Hartington Creamery joined forces to create a one-sausage showcase of some of the best local produce the Peak District has to offer. It’s rich and flavoursome, with a distinct and delicious blue cheese flavour complementing the pork taste perfectly.
The story begins when Claire Millner bought a little cheese shop in her village of Hartington, with no idea that soon she’d not just be selling cheese, but making it as well! Not long after she’d bought the cheese shop, a large nearby dairy company closed down. Claire was contacted by a group of the recently laid-off cheesemakers from the company who were planning to set up their own cheese making operation, and asked if she’d be willing to sell the cheese they made in her shop. As Derbyshire is one of only 3 counties that can produce Stilton cheese, the let-off cheesemakers were desperate not to lose this heritage (amazingly, Stilton Blue Cheese is not allowed to be made in the village of Stilton, according to Product Designation of Origin guidelines!).
Claire not only agreed to sell their cheese, but to work with the cheese makers to start a creamery. Working without the help of contractors, Claire and her 3 other partners built Hartington Creamery, which opened in 2012 with only 4 staff. Today, the creamery’s 12 staff produce 60 tonnes of top quality cheese annually.
As one of only 7 businesses in a small town in the Peak District with less than 400 residents, Claire knew the other shop owners very well. Her cheese had quickly become renowned in the area, and it wasn’t long before the owner of The Village Stores Hartington, Laura, who runs the store with her mother, asked whether her father could use some of Hartington Creamery’s cheese. Her father is a butcher who wanted to create a special new sausage synonymous with Hartington to be sold in his daughter’s village store.
Trials using the Hartington Creamery cheese in sausages were a big success and it wasn’t long before the village store was selling these special pork and blue cheese sausages. The sausages were launched at an event held at The Village Stores Hartington showcasing local produce, and were an instant hit. Today, people who come back every year to visit the area even call ahead to make sure there is plenty of stock for them to take home!
Two years ago the village of Hartington hosted the main food stop in “The World’s Most Handsome Bike Ride”, the Eroica Britannia. The Village Stores Hartington provided locally produced food and drinks to give the riders energy to keep peddling their vintage bikes. Laura, one of the owners of The Village Stores Hartington says that she personally cooked over 2,500 Hartington Sausages to feed the hungry riders on their journey! So whether you are fueling up for a long cycle or just enjoying a home cooked meal, we’re sure you will relish these delicious sausages. Try them out in our British Classic, Hartington Cheese Sausages with Colcannon.
Take a look at the full Great Gousto Food Fest menu HERE.