A good few weeks ago I received an e-mail out of the blue from the marketing people at Hollands Pies asking if I would like to try some of their goods.
Now, at first I was sceptical. This was the first time that yours truly had been asked to sample a product and immediately I wondered what the catch was. Cynicism abounded. However, after consulting the Twitterati, it became apparent that the e-mail was doing the rounds so I gladly accepted their offer.
Having grown up in Manchester, lived all my life in the Northwest and not being averse to a chippy tea I was reasonably familiar with their wares. Add to this that occasional working in Accrington meant that I have driven past their factory on a number of occasions means that the brand was already somewhat ingrained.
In all honesty then I began to wonder what they were up to. Why should Hollands send out lots of free samples to people who, in all likelihood, would be familiar with their products? Was there something groundbreaking going on that they had slipped under the radar? And with equal honesty I’m no more sure now that I know the answer.
Anyway – I digress. Weeks later I had neither heard anything nor taken delivery of any pies so I presumed that my original cynicism had been well founded and that there were to be none. Out of the blue again – an e-mail “Your pies will be delivered tomorrow afternoon”. Excellent.
Part of the reason for the delay in writing this post (sorry Hollands) is that the blog was beginning to look a bit pie-centric, as if it was all I ate. Perhaps the reason for the offer in the first place!! However, even I wasn’t about to sit down and try to consume the 7 different varieties in one sitting. As I recall, the following day would have been a Friday. Chippy day at work. Perfect. In to the office I went with my little bag of pies and announced that lunch was “On me”, well on Holands but you know what I mean.
So armed with chips from the chippy we got started on what, I’m sure thousands of others were or might be doing later that same day. And while there were nods of satisfaction and hints of appreciation I guess that’s kind of the point. Hollands have been making pies for over 160 years. They are clearly doing something right. And while the pies were certainly tasty (the peppered steak being my favourite) and filling I’m not sure I would buy them from the supermarket. From the chippy yes. But when it comes to cooking at home I prefer to do so from scratch – that’s just me.
I really did appreciate the chance to sample the pies from Hollands, however, given some comments on other blogs perhaps they should introduce their goods to our brothers and sisters down south……..
I’ll pie off now
Varieties in the bag: Peppered Steak, Cheese & Onion, Sausage Roll, Meat, Meat & Potato, Steak & Kidney Pudding and Chicken & Mushroom