Billy Hoy, who owns Findlay's of Portobello butchers shop in the coastal suburb's High Street, lifted the regional accolade in the Scottish Craft Butchers Awards 2022. But he admits the success is nothing to do with him.
Laughing, he said: “I made the beef link sausages for the awards four years ago and we weren't even placed, so the team will be ribbing me that they have done brilliantly without me.”
Hoy took over the business in 2017 after managing the shop for nearly 15 years for previous owner Joe Findlay – but he said the award-winning beef links are made to a relatively new recipe for the business.
“My son Grant and others have developed the recipe in recent years using prime Scottish beef and choice seasoning – and it has proved a real winner with the customers.
“It's fantastic that it's also proved a winner with the judges.”
Despite picking up several regional and national awards for products such as haggis and black pudding in the past, this is the first time Findlay's of Portobello has taken the regional title for sausages.
“We're absolutely thrilled,” beamed Hoy. “It's given everyone a real lift after two years of working flat out through the Covid crisis.
“It's great to be judged at this level by the industry experts and know that our products are up there among the best – that gives the whole team a boost and assures us we're getting it right.”
Hoy’s team is now working to ensure they have plenty beef link sausages available for any customers who want to try the best beef bangers in the region.
Scottish Craft Butchers President Tom Courts said: “It's great to see butchers vying for the accolades again after Covid, and we're seeing the very best of the best take this year's championships.
“It gives a butcher a great lift to know his products are judged to be among the best in Scotland, and customers can be assured that the beef links they buy across the counter at Findlay's of Portobello are exactly the same as those that secured the judges' vote in the competition.”