The Larder in Huntly… where to begin?
With more than 30K followers on Facebook alone, The Larder is undoubtedly one of the most popular delis in the north-east in terms of social media count.
I know many people that travel to Huntly for the sole purpose of getting their hands on some products. I too have done this in the past to no prevail on two occasions as stock sells out fast.
Their products, whether they be sweet are savoury, are of gigantic proportions, and are a feast for the eyes.
The team’s creativity ensures the brand stands out from the crowd, with quirky creations including Milkybar, raspberry and tablet cheesecake, stuffed cookies, Battenberg cheesecake, and ‘old school’ sponge.
I encouraged Julia to check out their Facebook page recently. From the outset, it was decided we would need to visit for a Drive-Thru Diners instalment.
The Larder: What is it and what’s on offer?
It is open from 10am to 2pm Monday to Friday, so the windows is rather tight for anyone that doesn’t reside in the area. But I can assure that you won’t regret the journey.
Fresh sandwiches, hot food, homemade soups, pies and quiches are among the savoury options. As for the desserts, expect everything from cinnamon whirls and Danish pastries, to cheesecakes, cakes, brownies, sundaes and tarts.
Celebration cakes and cupcakes can be ordered, as well.
The Larder also offers free local delivery – no matter how big or small the order.
Verdict: Caramelised onion, mustard, and cheese sausage roll
The excitement was at a whole new level on arriving. However, we were informed that a few of the savoury items available that day were still in the oven.
“Can you wait 15 minutes?” a member of the team asked. As soon as we heard there was a caramelised onion, mustard and cheese sausage roll included in that line-up, we knew it was a must.
The flakey pastry boasted an enticing golden-brown colour, while the sprinkling of herbs on top gave it a more up-market look.
To taste, all the flavours were apparent, particularly the tart mustard.
Each ingredient married well together. And the fact that the sausage roll was hot when we tucked in made it all the better.
Verdict: Macaroni and bacon pie
Visually, this was one of the largest and most appealing macaroni pies I’ve seen. There was a crispy, cheesy coating that acted as a blanket over the well-cooked pasta, adding an amazing crunch.
The pastry held well and the addition of bacon was stellar. And neither of us could fault the macaroni itself.
All in all, a superb item that would leave you feeling full and satisfied if you devoured the lot.
Verdict: White chocolate, strawberry and tablet cheesecake
Onto the sweets. It was a challenge pinning down our choices, but this cheesecake was a must.
We agreed there was the perfect biscuit-to-cheesecake mix ratio. The mixture was silky-smooth and creamy, featuring small pieces of tablet throughout that elevated it further. The tablet had a pleasant chew and, along with the frothy mix, melted in the mouth.
As for the base, there was a distinct Digestive and buttery flavour. It was sweet, but not overpowering.
The dessert was topped with white chocolate sauce, raspberry sauce, white chocolate shavings, whipped cream, a chunk of white chocolate, a halved strawberry, and what appeared to be tablet shavings.
The raspberry sauce was incredible, adding a nice zing.
Verdict: Matilda cake
Julia’s reaction after being told they had a ‘Matilda cake’ available that day was a picture. And oh boy, The Larder delivered.
It wasn’t until a decade on from the release of the original Matilda film that I watched it. One scene that imprinted in my mind involved, you guessed it, Bruce Bogtrotter tucking into that mammoth-sized chocolate cake.
The takeaway nailed every aspect of the cake, from its size to the utterly sweet taste that the iconic original was sure to have. There were three layers of rich buttercream – one white chocolate, one milk, and one dark.
The pair of us agreed it was too sweet for our palates. But if you think you could give it a go, then I’d urge you to.
The white chocolate, strawberry and tablet cheesecake came out on top at The Larder in Huntly, racking up a score of (for the first time in the series) 20/20.
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