Upper crust pies keep Wiganers smiling

Wiganers are fabled for enjoying a good pie - and one chef and his business partner have launched a new initiative that specialises in high class creations - from a pub.
Standisher Alex Melling and his chef business partner Chris VernazzaStandisher Alex Melling and his chef business partner Chris Vernazza
Standisher Alex Melling and his chef business partner Chris Vernazza

Standisher Alex Melling and his chef business partner Chris Vernazza are behind the haute cuisine pastry business Baldy’s Pies, named after the fact the duo are both bald.

It has only been operating for a matter of weeks but they have built up a huge following for their culinary delicacies.

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The pair have worked in top restaurants, including Michelin-starred Lancashire restaurant Northcote, and in kitchens from Spain to Australia.

Pies on offer at Baldy’sPies on offer at Baldy’s
Pies on offer at Baldy’s

But this latest lockdown saw them launch their takeaway business with pies from a pub - The Crown, at Worthington, where they are operating out of the kitchen, while it is closed.

There is no delivery, it is pick-up only from the Platt Lane pub.

Varieties of pies include braised shin of beef, confit shallots, bone marrow and pistachio; confit belly pork and buttered hispi cabbage and mustard.

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Others include black pudding and apricot crumb; and for the veggies, truffled cauliflower cheese and falafel, grated broccoli, toasted pine nuts and parmesan crumb.

And Alex and Chris said it had been a great first week for the business.

The pair said: “Thanks for your support guys, the move has been great for us.

“Week one done with a few hiccups but next week we will be more organised.

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“We have our websites online system being made bespoke as we speak.

“Hopefully we will be up and running soon and the new order system will be a lot easier for us.”

They added that a new set menu will be introduced, with even more pies on offer as well as desserts.

Andrew McKenna, who has revitalised The Crown after it re-opened last year praised the pies.

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He said: “Baldy’s Pies was looking for a kitchen during lockdown and as a fellow start-up business we wanted to help while our kitchen remains closed.

“The pies are superb and are incredibly popular.”

Once The Crown has re-opened, the plan is for the pub to continue to supply Baldy’s who will most likely have to find a new site.

For more information on Baldy’s and their new menu and how to get a pick-up for a pie, visit them on Facebook at Baldy’s Pies.

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