In our Great Horkesley shop we have fridges with Pinney`s of Orford smoked fish, and it`s always a thrill this time of year to pick one or two for a picnic. Their fish paté, of mostly mackerel, is a delight on Oval Albert biscuits; and when served with a cheeky lunchtime glass of Italy`s Fiano it`s a pick-u-up like little else. Their Salmon paté is another welcome treat – creamier, richer – better suited we think to a lightly oaked Chardonnay. The smoked quality of their fish generally favours lightly oaked wines, the “oak and smoke” a well- trodden formula, with charred wood playing a part in the making of both. But so long as the wine has plenty of flavour, and isn’t overpowered by the fish, we find that unoaked white wines can be just as delicious. Take, for example, Pinney`s golden Scottish cold-smoked haddock. This is fabulous with our Los Gonsos Gewurztraminer from Chile, the weighty palate and exotic fruit-quality of the wine (oak-free) packing a beautiful punch. We`ve been meaning to make a Kedgeree with this beautiful fish, however, served simply with brown bread and butter it`s a delicious picnic-treat! Incidentally, if you are smoking your own, take care not to over-smoke. We did just that recently cooking a seafood paella over a spit. The dish was spoiled, the wine over-whelmed. Another of Pinney`s, their Hot Smoked salmon, has an amazing oaky smoked flavour and is steamed after smoking to give it a succulent flaked texture as well. This is fabulous with salad and mayonnaise, or with fresh pesto and pasta, and a glass of my favourite Bouchard Finlayson Crocodile`s Lair Chardonnay. Our best-selling Pinney`s fish is their Smoked Scottish salmon. Hand-reared on one of the oldest independent farms in Scotland this salmon is of the very highest quality, smoked using whole logs of Suffolk oak gently smouldered for the perfect taste. Serve simply with a squeeze of lemon and black pepper. This is a special occasion picnic-treat, best served with Champagne (our go-to favourite Champagne Devaux Cuvée D), and, naturally, brown bread and butter. Oh joy!
The Wine Centre, Great Horkesley Opening hours 10am to 6.30pm Monday to Saturday. Telephone 01206 271 236 , email firstname.lastname@example.org