Blue cheese is secret ingredient as village butcher wins best British burger competition

Pickings Butchers Paul Clark has won a national award for best burger
Pickings Butchers Paul Clark has won a national award for best burger
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He’s been hailed as having the best bangers around – but now East Boldon butcher Paul Clark has created the best British burger.

Paul, who runs George H Pickings Jnr’s village butchers in Front Street, took the top honour for best burger at Foodex’s Meatex competition, at Birmingham’s NEC Arena.

We’ve been making this burger for a while but for the competition we just modified it a bit by putting some blue cheese in for the flavour.

Paul Clark

The meaty marvel, which includes blue cheese, beat more than 360 other entries to take the title.

The competition, organised by National Federation of Meat and Food Traders, included 20 separate categories including best Scotch egg, best bacon and even best ready meal.

Paul was also handed a gold award for his sausages, adding to success last year when he won best innovative sausage in the North East.

“We’ve been making this burger for a while, but for the competition we just modified it a bit by putting some blue cheese in for the flavour,” said 52-year-old.

“I wanted it so that when you bite into the burger you end up with the cheese oozing out.

“The only thing is with every burger, I was having to stamp out the meat four times just to make one!

“I’ll be going back to mixing things from now on.”

Paul added that the achievement is another vote of confidence for the popular store’s produce.

“There were more than 360 entrants in the competition so there was a really good turnout,” he said. “I won the top award previously with a Pitmen’s Sausage, pork with black pudding, which is still very popular.

“I think we’ve won everything there is to win now.

“But I’m especially pleased to win for the burger, because barbecue time is coming around and it shows we are not a one-trick pony.

“It was a long day driving down, but we had some great banter with the other butchers and I really enjoyed it.”