Businesses in Kendal are taking part in #yourewelcomekendal, a campaign to promote all thefantastic cafes, restaurants, pubs, bars, producers and food retailers in the town.
We’ve been catching up with the people behind the businesses to find out why they love what they do.
Steve Manders runs Wagtail Kitchen, in Kendal, producing delicious, handmade pies. The range of over 20 pies are served at pubs and restaurants throughout South Cumbria.
“Pies are a small luxury that bring a lot of pleasure,” says Steve.
“If you do it right, then a pie can be as tasty and enjoyable as anything, but you’ve got to use the right ingredients. We make everything from scratch here, including the pastry, which is really important.
“We make a total of 22 pies, but I think my favourite of all of them is probably the chicken balti. It’s got lots of spices in there, it’s got fresh Greek yoghurt and mango chutney. We roast all the chickens here and debone them and use the stock for the sauce and that adds a lot of flavour.
“I like working with local businesses, not only selling them the pies, but also using their ingredients and produce when I can. I make a steak and ale pie using beer from Gan Yam Brewery, which is just fantastic and picked up two stars at the Great Taste Awards.
“In the first year I made about 20,000 pies with a rolling pin and now we’re up to about 60,000 pies. I make everything onsite here. It’s a great place to be based with so many artisan producers in one area, like Lovingly Artisan just downstairs, Ginger Bakers across the yard and then Rinaldo’s Speciality Coffee and Tea as well. We sell mainly into retail and pubs, but people can come and buy pies from the shop here as well.
“I’m originally from Hull and I did various jobs before going into wedding catering. I also began keeping pigs on the Pennines and from that I started making charcuterie and sausages. I’ve always focused on making top-quality food but which everyone can appreciate. We pride ourselves not only on our produce, but our traditional values and the community surrounding our business. We hope our handcrafted, artisan recipes can bring joy to any table.”
#yourewelcomekendal is being funded by the Government’s Welcome Back Fund. The Welcome Back Fund is funded by the European Regional Development Fund and HM Government as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020.