Enkelhed Meets Friends Of Ham

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ENKELHED MEETS FRIENDS OF HAM

So if you are from Leeds or the surrounding area we hope you've all hear of the award winning Friends of Ham bar & charcuterie. If however you have not heard about them yet let us explain.

Friends of Ham opened on New Station Street in July 2012 with the aim of bringing high quality food and drink to Leeds in a relaxed, friendly and informal setting.

Starting out as a tiny ground floor bar with a large “hidden” basement they expanded 2 years later into the unit next door and continue to serve great beer, wine charcuterie and cheese to the good people of Leeds.

Well as of August 2015 they opened their sister site in the former Ilkley Gazette offices on Wells Road just a hop (pardon the pun) and skip from the station.

The ground floor and basement of the beautiful Victorian building have been transformed into an eating and drinking emporium complete with a Tasting Room, Delicatessen, and Log Burner. There are three great areas to eat and dine. We really love the back room, sitting in the huge victorian bay window overlooking the goings-on in Ilkley town center. Or if maybe you have had a long walk with friends on Ilkley moor and just fancy follow up drinks with friends and the dogs the bar area is perfect.

We decided to team up with them at their new sister site in the beautiful town of Ilkley to showcase our Hampson Woods serving boards and three of their new cheeses for this month.

The first of the new cheeses is the Dunsyre Blue, a rich lingering blue cheese made in Carnwash near Edinburgh. Created as a sister to their famous sheep’s milk cheese Lanark blue which due to a winter lack of the milk from the sheep can’t be made for half the year.

Made using Friesian cow’s milk from nearby farm this is a recipe adapted from Lanark Blue with tweaks to the recipe and maturing temperatures. Dunsyre Blue is pierced at 10 days old to allow the blue mould to form before being wrapped up in a traditional silver foil and matured for four months.

The second cheese is Etivaz, a gruyere-style from Etivaz, Switzerland. Which is smoky with caramel and nutty sweetness.

It uses ancient traditions of alpine cheese making, the way they used to make mountain cheese hundreds of years ago. Only made May to October in small Alpine chalets, the milk is sourced from cows that graze in high mountain pastures.

The 69 producers of Etivaz return to their chalets in the Swiss Alps each summer once the snow has melted. Each cheese is made by hand, the milk and the curd heated in copper cauldrons hanging over open log fires which gives it smokey flavours.

Once a few days the old cheese is transported down the mountain by ageing cellars where the cooperative takes care of the ageing and selling of the cheeses.

The final cheese is the Rollright from King Stone Farm, chipping Norton, Cotswolds. A washed-rind cheese which is based on the classic French cheese Reblochon. Very similar recipe to the French washed-rind cheese, at three months old after being regularly washed in brine it has a thin, orangey-red and soft, buttery interior.

It is named after the Neolithic and broke age rollright stones formation, of which the king stone farm sits on the farm and which still regularly witness worshiping by hagen druids.

The Hampson woods serving boards come in 4 variant styles they bring a delicately crafted beauty into your home and each one is unique. The boards are designed and produced in Hackney, East London.

Small-batch production is patient and considered; and are equally careful with sourcing of material – quite simply, no timber is worked unless its provenance is known.
The care and consideration they employ means that everything that leaves the Hackney workshop is of the highest quality – it is only by handling and patiently crafting in this way that you can do justice to the beauty that lies within the finished piece.

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There are of course many other things to choose from the menu, we tried the French board which featured the Jesus du Pays Basque, Comte (UnP) and Vacherin Mont D'Or (UnP).

If just a few bar snacks are your thing then the Gordal olives are great (and huge) along with some smokes Marcona almonds, which pairs great with there great selection of beers.