Pie = Footballing Life, squared
Part of the ‘modus operandi’, if you will (I will), of Footballing Life is the food: be that looking at the nutrition of footballers food, the vans on the way to the match, or the food on offer in grounds. On the latter couple of themes what’s more football than a pie hey? A culinary stalwart of the footballing day since Johnny Pieface first pitched his pie stall outside the DW Stadium in 1827* [*may not be factual or historically accurate in any way].
In the first of our ‘Pies, Pies, Pies’ series then we’ll be doing a general round-up of a few things pie in modern footballing life. It’ll also be the start of two campaigns: to decide on the best pie available at a football ground (’14-’15), and to identify the cheapest pie avalable at a football ground (’14-’15 …though who knows maybe we’ll continue it every year).
The British Pie Awards
The first thing we should probably cover is that there is in existence already a ‘British Pie Awards’, which itself does have a ‘Football Pie’ category. Entrants must be “a pie commercially sold at football clubs – to be eaten and judged HOT” …which is good as we’re really not talking Pork Pies or dessert pies here. Also “entries may be any shape and may weigh up to 600g” so a square pie is fine, though it’s not clear what a pie is above 6oog (other than Pienormous…ahem).
Who’s the reigning champion then? Well that goes on a very regular basis it seems to the pies served up at Morecambe FC, which won the category in 2014, 2012, and won the whole competition in 2011. So they’ll likely be the ones to beat. Please get in touch though if you’ve had a match-day pie recently and really rate it, giving it your marks out of 10 and ‘tasting notes’.
It’s not just about the quality though hey, if there’s a deliciously gourmet pie available at the match but it’s £15 that’s no good, so we also want to find out who’s keeping it real with reasonable pricing, and in particular who has the cheapest pie in the land. Now, I’ve not found a ‘Cheapest Football Pie of the Year’ awards, but Seatwave did take a look at this in 2013 for the Premier League (comparing the costs of buying a pie, a pint and a programme at a match). The verdict? Well renowned pie lovers Wigan came out with the crown, at just £2.30 a pie. The priciest pies were to be found at Fulham where they were £3.90.
I have to say though that I think pies have been inflating… that is they’re already more expensive in 2014 so it’ll be interesting to hear who thinks they’ve had the cheapest match-day pie, as I’m pretty sure the pies at Wigan are much more than £2.30 now. I was at Brighton’s AMEX stadium the other day actually and although their service was great, they put the opposition badge in their shirts & play ‘best of’ videos, the pies were at least £4.50 I think which smashes that Fulham priciest pie out of the park (leaving a trail of gravy and pastry no doubt).
Who Ate All The Pies?
Finally, it’s ever the question in the form of song: ‘Who Ate All The Pies?’ Well, it turns out one lad did in 2009. Tom Dickinson took on the challenge of single-handedly eating a pie at all 92 (at time of writing) professional clubs, he’s a Bolton fan too as it happens (we may see about a chat with him for a future show). The verdict? Well, this was a few years back but he discovered contenders for ‘cheapest football pie in Britain’ as the cheapest that year was found at Darlington, a Meat & Potato pie for a mere £1.30! He agreed with the pie awards that Morecambe had the best,
Play I Spy Pie
So as we begin our quest to track the best, and cheapest, pies available in the UK we ask you to ‘chip’ in and get in touch with your pie spotting! Let use know in the comments, the forums, on Twitter or on Facebook!
Photo by brianna.lehman