If organic and free-range sausage specialist HG Walter’s wonderful array of existing recipes – such as beef and Guinness (£13 per kilo), chicken and apricot (£13 per kilo), pork, tomato, garlic and herbs (£10 per kilo) – are not tempting enough, the butcher's of Baron’s Court can create bespoke sausages to suit individual tastes. For Heston Blumenthal, the family-run, 35-year-old outlet has even created chilli, chocolate and orange pork bangers, and by a rare cacao coincidence, the Michelin-starred restaurant La Trompette commissioned a chocolate, chilli and venison version too.
The bespoke side of the business began when customers with dietary requirements started requesting special sausages, such as gluten-free varieties. “We also had a woman who was desperate because her kids wouldn’t eat anything,” says director and master sausage-maker Daniel Heanen – son of the founder Peter Heanen, “so we designed a sausage they liked and she still orders them today.”
Commissioning begins with a chat about a customer’s tastes. “If someone likes apple, blackberries, pork and pistachios, for example, we can play around with the recipe. I know the flavours that go together but sometimes unusual ingredients do work.” One creation in progress (from £12 per kilo) is a brunch sausage, with egg, bacon, black pudding and beans. “It’s very strange having beans but it’s fun mucking around with the mix,” proclaims Heanen with the pride of a saucisson professional. The butcher’s favourite? The fat pig sausage, made from mangalitza pork with chorizo, chilli, morcilla and manchega (£17 per kilo), of which 50 per cent of sale proceeds go to the Children’s Cancer charity.
“And one I want to try is the Christmas dinner sausage, with turkey, chestnut, cranberry and stuffing,” says Heanen. Sizzling stuff.