A publication celebrating the delicacy which has put Arbroath on the culinary map was launched today (Monday).
The Arbroath Smokie Trail is a free colour booklet providing information about where to eat and buy these world-renowned delicacies, as well as recipes and the centuries-old history of the Arbroath Smokie, which is rumoured to date back to the days when the Vikings regularly raided Scotland’s east coast.
“The Arbroath Smokie’s excellent reputation attracts high numbers of visitors to the town,” said Councillor Mairi Evans, Angus Council’s economic development spokeperson.
“It’s now 10 years since the Arbroath Smokie was awarded Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) status by the European Commission and, since then, this product has gone from strength to strength as local fish businesses and eateries have made the most of this unique, and delicious, product,” continued Councillor Evans.
“This booklet will further raise awareness of Arbroath Smokies amongst visitors from near and far, providing tourists with yet another reason to spend time in Arbroath and the surrounding area, while also reminding local food lovers of the famous delicacy produced on our doorstep.”
The Arbroath Smokie Trail explains that, as the Arbroath Smokie is protected under European Law, it can only be made within three miles of Arbroath Harbour - although Smokies were originally made in the nearby fishing village of Auchmithie.
In fact, as the booklet reveals, they only became Arbroath Smokies when the Auchmithie fishermen moved their boats and their families to the town in the 19th century, bringing with them their unique method of preserving haddock by cooking over a hot, smoky fire.
Arbroath Smokies are now considered one of the Scotland’s top foodie treats and Billy Cull of the Harbourside Grill in Arbroath has several dishes on his restaurant’s menu which feature Arbroath Smokies.
“Freshly-smoked Arbroath Smokies certainly attracts tourists to the Harbourside Grill,” said Billy. “They are always keen to try them, either grilled or in one of our dishes containing Arboath Smokies, such as our Cullen Skink, which, thanks to our use of Smokies rather than smoked haddock, has a slightly different flavour to the traditional version.
“I’m delighted the Harbourside Grill is one of the eating places mentioned in the Arbroath Smokie Trail, which will encourage even more people to visit Arbroath so they can enjoy one of the world’s not-to-be-missed culinary experiences.”
The Arbroath Smokie Trail will be available at tourist information centres, ACCESS offices, libraries, museums and tourist attractions across Angus from April 5. It will also be available to download from.tartandayscotland.com, where information can be found about the programme for the Tartan Day Scotland Festival 2014, which includes a major Homecoming Scotland event in Arbroath over the weekend of April 5/6.
To keep up to date with the latest news about the Tartan Day Scotland Festival, ‘like’ the Tartan Day Scotland facebook page.