Saturday, May 04, 2013

The Great Tassie Curried Scallop Pie Rater and Locator

UPDATED 4 May 2013
It's a culinary delicacy peculiar to the island state, and a historical indication of the place things from the deep used to have on the great food pecking order of Anglo Saxon Australia; eg the days when fish & seafood was something cooked by:
  • New Australians;
  • Catholics on Friday;
  • People who couldn't afford RED MEAT.
The curried scallop pie is quintessentially Tasmanian, and with the primary ingredient trading between $35 and $55 a kilo, visitors today gawp in amazement to see them encased in flaky pastry, swimming in white sauce spiced up with a dash of Keen's Curry and bunged in a glass fronted warmer for a day or two.

Well, here at Tassieblather, we reckon they're great, and after searching the web, we've discovered there's no buyers' guide as to where these little pastry pockets of flavour are available, what the quality's like, or how many scallys you're likely to get. Not neccesarily limited to the coast or the city, you'll find curried scallop pies available statewide. Our reviewers have only managed to get to a few southern outlets so far, but if you've got a favourite provider of what must be the Tasmanian national dish, please drop us a line and a report and we'll follow up with a tasting.

Characteristics of a good curried scallop pie:
  • Local scallops (ask the counter staff). Frozen, imported scallops are an absolute negative.
  • At least four scallops in a pie. Five is great. Six is booming.
  • Sauce that has a nice tang, but isn't too overpowering for the scallops.
  • Likewise, sauce that isn't too glutinous.
Anyhow, onto the pies and their providers:

UPDATE: 3 May 2013


Reviewer: @digbyhabel

Pie bought from: Various, Northern Tasmania

I am currently travelling around Tasmania looking for the best scallop pie so your blog will be helpful.

Tried 3 so far and rated them on Presentation, Top Pastry, Bottom Pastry, Amount of Scallops and Taste. The maximum score is 35 points (taste and amount of scallops were rated higher)
The results so far:


The Tinnies version is quite an experience - huge volume, fabulous mild green curry sauce and masses of scallops.



Date: 22/1/2012
Reviewer: @drnaomi
Pie bought from: Jackman McRoss Bakery
Brand: Own
Locations: Main Road New Town, Victoria Street CBD & Hampden Road Battery Point
Pastry: Great
Sauce:  Wasabi instead of Keens
# of scallops: 7+
Local scallops: Unsure
Price: $7.20 Take away
Rating: 9
Notes: "scallop, leek, peas, wakame, peppercorns, wasabi.....seriously, I could die right now and not regret a thing."...Naomi







Pie bought from: Golden Tulip Patisserie
Brand: Own
Address: Channel Court Kingston and Magnet Court Sandy Bay
Date: 24 January 2013
Pastry: Solid - Potato topping
Sauce: Nice tang
# of scallops: 5-6
Local scallops: Y
Price: $7.00
Rating: 6
Notes:





Pie bought from: Gingerbread House Bakery
Brand: Own
Address: Dover
Website/Location
Date: 25/4/2008
Pastry: Excellent
Sauce: V Good
# of scallops: 4 or 5
Local scallops: Y
Price: $5.50
Rating: 8
Notes: All pies are excellent


Pie bought from: Cripps Bakery
Brand: ? Unsure if they make their own
Address: Bellerieve
Website/Location

Date: 30/08/2008
Pastry: Good
Sauce: Average
# of scallops: 3 or 4
Local scallops ?
Price $5.00
Rating 6
Notes


Pie bought from: Platter Pie Café
Brand: Own
Address: Hamilton
Website/Location
Date: 9/10/2008
Pastry: Excellent
Sauce: Excellent
# of scallops: 4 or 5
Local scallops: Y
Price: $6.00
Rating: 8.5
Notes: All pies are excellent. Possibly best pies in Tasmania.


Pie bought from: Food Van at Eaglehawk Neck Blowhole car park
Brand: Own
Address: Doo Town
Website/Location
Date: 23/02/2009
Pastry: V Good
Sauce: V Good-maybe a bit too spicy for scallops
# of scallops 5
Local scallops Y
Price $6.00
Rating: 7
Notes: They also sell DooTown Venison and red wine pies!


Pie bought from: Richmond Café
Brand: Smith's
Address: Bridge Road Richmond
Website/Location
Date: 28/02/2009
Pastry: Good
Sauce: Average-Glutinous –not enough curry
# of scallops: 3
Local scallops: Y
Price: $6.00
Rating: 5
Notes: these pies also available from Smith's pie van at Salamanca Market. Have spoken to staff in van and they use Victorian scallops during off season in Tasmania. Not as mortal a sin as using frozen scallops, that's for sure.


Pie bought from: Mure's Lower Deck
Brand: Own
Address: Constitution Dock Hobart
Website/Location
Date: To be reviewed
Pastry:
Sauce:
# of scallops:
Local scallops:
Price:
Rating: 

Notes:
Pie bought from: Harbour Lights Cafe, Sullivan's Cove
Brand: "A local bakery"
Website/Location
Date: 5/3/2009
Pastry: Good. held together well. Nice flavour.
Sauce: Nice balance of curry and viscosity.
# of scallops: 4
Local scallops: Unsure.
Price: $6.90
Rating: 7.5/10
Notes: Scallops quite plump & tasty. Unsure if local or frozen. Perhaps the price indicates local.

Pie bought from: Cygnet Commercial Hotel (aka the "bottom pub")
Brand: OwnAddress: Cygnet
Website/LocationDate: 8/5/2009 (updated from 13/4)Pastry: Good
Sauce: Average. Not that strong.
# of scallops: 5-6
Local scallops: Perhaps not, as bought out of season.
Price $5.00
Rating: 6
Notes. Reheated from frozen, as bought for me by Dad.

Pie bought from: Petty Sessions Cafe
Brand: Own
Address: Huon Highway Franklin.
Website/Location
Date:14/4/2008
Pastry: Excellent. Very flaky. Pie shaped like a raindrop.
Sauce: Minimal. Low curry flavour.
# of scallops: 4 or 5
Local scallops: Unknown.
Price: $10.00
Rating: 7
Notes: High price mainly due to pie being served to table. Takeaway price probably cheaper.

Pie bought from: Richmond Bakery
Brand: Own
Address: Edward Street Richmond
Website/Location

Date: To be reviewed
Pastry:
Sauce:
# of scallops:
Local scallops:
Price:
Rating:
Notes:


Pie bought from: Take away shops, Petrol Stations, etc
Brand: National Pies
Website/Location
Date: To be reviewed
Pastry:
Sauce:
# of scallops:
Local scallops:
Price:
Rating:
Notes:

28 comments:

tassieblather said...

FACEBOOK COMMENTS: Dennis O'Neil at 23:12 on 02 March
Maybe it's because i'm from the northern hemisphere, but I can't say the idea of curried scallop pie sounds tempting. I applaud your scientific spirit though. Let us know when you've found the worst...

Dennis O'Neil at 03:25 on 03 March
So I visited yer site and note yer not getting much help in yer rating project. I hereby call on all Scott's mates to put the collective shoulder to the wheel and help out. After all, if he's willing to go to the Food Van at Eaglehawk Neck Blowhole Car Park for you, the least you can do is chip in some curried scallop pie recommendations.

Scott Plimpton at 08:36 on 03 March
The blog piece did only go up last night, but hearty thanks to Dennis for the call to arms. Curried scallop pie eaters of Tasmania, do your thing.
BTW Dennis, speaking of culinary institutions from small islands, what's your favourite Pastrami on Rye? Katie & I went to Katz', which was gobstoppingly amazing, but I guess there must be some outta da way places around the joint?

Debbie Liddell-Barwick at 08:54 on 03 March
dude do you want to bring some up with you .... you should not have mention them :)

tassieblather said...

More Facebook:

Jeremy Buckingham at 08:59 on 03 March
In my experience the Snug takeaway is home to the best scallop pie in Van Diemens land. Plenty of scallop, enough but not too much curry and pastry that is robust enough to deal with a delicious sauce.

Todd Perry at 10:56 on 03 March
Great idea...I was disappointed by the ones I had while on hols there.. including the flouresent one!

Oliver Townshend at 07:44 on 03 March
I'd forgotten all about these. Another Tassie treasure.

naomi said...

Can you get me one please? I'd like at least five scallops, with pastry that has real butter, and a nice bearnaise sauce. Ta, send by courier to Katoomba please.

Anonymous said...

Have just moved to George Town and The Oven bakery has great scallop pies. Cost is about $4.50. Plenty of scallops and not to much curry. Nice pastry. if your up North give them a try. Only cook a limited number so need to buy just before lunch time or all gone. I think they only open during the week or until 12:00 on Saturdays.

Anonymous said...

Have you tried the Scallop Pie from the Ross Bakery simply the best.

Zoe said...

I am eager to see how you rate Naomi's pie, as she says you're a bit of a afficionado?

I also salute your scientific spirit.

John Cotterell said...

I hadn't been back to Tassie for 20+ years. Took the wife, Michelle, down to Long Beach, Hobart. Earth (sand) works everywhere. Decided to get something to eat in a takeaway shop, The Blue Strawberry in Beach Road only a 100yards from the beach. OMG! They had curried scallop pies - this is nectar for the gods. These pies are one of the truly great OZ dishes. No one should ever knock it until they have tried them. I make them now in QLD with just short crust pastry scallops and a curried bechamel sauce. I got help from the lady at the Blue Strawberry over phone from the Gold Coast, nice people. Get the Sally Wise recipe from the ABC.
No potato, no onion, no tomato sauce. The object of the exercise is to pack in as many scallops (roe on of course) not wasting space on irrelevancies.
Regards, John

Yvonne said...

Surprisingly, the BEST Scallop pies I ever had in Tassie were at the little servo at the turn-off to Stanley. They had a variety of beautiful home-made pies there. This was a few years ago though, so things may have changed.

Lauren said...

I had never had a scallop pie until i traveled to Tassie. Like yvonne above, i had my first at Stanley (not at the servo, but in the town from a small cafe/shop). Bit too hot at first, but gave it 10 mins and was BRILLIANT!!

Anonymous said...

I'm coming over tomorrow for a week & so pleased this site exists. I have not been back for 20 yrs & a scallop pie is on top of my list. Good old National pies used to make them & were as available as meat pies back in the 70's. I wonder do National meat pies taste as good as they did in the 70's, i rate thme as the best (mass produced) meat pie in Oz...& i've had a few....no doubt the recipe has changed..I'll soon find out...let the curried scallop fest begin!! Tim Chandler.

Anonymous said...

Hey guys
If you go to www.tasmanianscalloppiecompany.com.au you can order Scallop pie and Salmon and Brie pies.

Vacum sealed and sent to anywhere in Aussie.

They are delicious!

David

Anonymous said...

was in Tassie Late Jan 2011, asked for a Scallop Pie but was told that it was not scallop season. but was then offered a Butter Chicken and Prawn pie! A nice surprise.

Thomas Foster said...

Why do people put curry into scallop pies? I love scallops but the curry covers the flavour of the scallops. I will on only eat scallop pies that contain no curry. Curry has been used for hundreds of years by poor Indian and other asians to cover the bad taste of the poor food that was all that was available to them so why use it to cover a fantastic flavour like scallop

tassieblather said...

Hi Thomas, it's not a real Indian or Asian style curry. It's usually "Keen's Curry", a Tasmanian invented delicacy, which is sweeter and not really hot. It's like a white sauce consistency and actually compliments the scallop flavour quite nicely.

Anonymous said...

Best scallop pie in the universe was from a service station out the back of Launceston airport in 1989. Admittedly this was my first ever scallop pie. The people I was with, radio techs from the airport, were amazed that I had only bought one so I had a bite and went racing back and bought another.

Anonymous said...

The best scallop pie I have ever had traveling around aus was at the smiths pie van at the Salamanca market. I was a bit stand off'ish at first so they gave me a taste for free, I ended up buying that one and two more.... I am still yet to find one as good as a smiths scallop pie.

Anonymous said...

I too love a Good Tassie Curried Scallop pie.....

Have you ever noticed how most outlets selling such Beasties all proclaim to have Tassies Best.

Well, I am from the North of the state and I would like to add my sugestion, may or may not be the best, but The most enjoyable I have tried so far.

My vote is for a Tinneys curried scallop pie. located at the five ways in Launceston.

What makes this pie sooooo good?

Its Huge!!
Wonderful Pastry!
and EVERY mouth full gets you a Scallop in a lovely curry sauce.....

Do yourself a favour, if you are a Pie lover, try a Tinnys,

They also do great roast lamb pies, Chicken mornay, Steak and kidney, Thai green curry just to name a few.

But i digress, this place is Pie heaven and their Curried Scallop pie is Yummo.

im hungry now! lol

Anonymous said...

Best Scollop Pie ever - dreamy light pastry, 5-6 scollops (with roe!!) sauce delicate, buttery(not too creamy)with a hint of curry or was that mustard....at the Apollo Bay Bakery - Apollo Bay, Victoria...yes I know it is not Tassie but it is in a gorgeous fishing village surrounded by mountains on the Great Ocean Road just 2.5 hours from Melbourne and just across the water from Tassie. The delicious pies are absolutely worth travelling for!!! Service was fabulous and such a super squeeky clean bakery too!

Anonymous said...

Best scollop pie ever - dreamy light pastry, 5-6 scollops (with roe!!) sauce delicate, buttery(not too creamy) with a hint of curry or was that mustard....at the Apollo Bay Bakery - Apollo Bay, Victoria...yes I know it is not Tassie but it is in a gorgeous fishing village surrounded by mountains on the Great Ocean Road just 2.5 hours from Melbourne and just across the water from Tassie. Delicious pies absolutely worth travelling for!!! Well worth the journey. Service was fabulous and such a super squeaky clean bakery too!

slippery888 said...

TInnies Pies at 5 ways in Launceston have the biggest most delectable scallop pies I've ever tried. Can't beat em. They aren't cheap though but they are huge. Simon W.A originally from Tas.

Anonymous said...

I stayed at Bicheno (Mid East Coast of Tassie) And stopped off at the local cafe' (I think it was called "Porks" or similar - last place you'd think to get a scallop pie from!!!)- OMG! Yum!!! the best pie I've ever had (I'm drooling just thinking about it!). Lovely homemade pastry, lightly curried flavour sauce (not too overpowering)and mabe 4 or 5 scallops for $4.00. I'm going to try and reproduce them back here in Melbourne; as my Easter treat!!

greyim said...

Currie is for roadkill... in countries where you cant be sure where the meat comes from. Why put it on scallops? May as welll be scalloped seafood extender... may be it is!

tassieblather said...

It's generally a pretty light curry that complements the scallop beautifully. Google up Keens Curry - a Tasmanian recipe..perhaps originally developed for scallops!

Digby Habel said...

3 May 2013.

i am currently travelling around Tasmania looking for the best scallop pie so your blog will be helpful.

Tried 3 so far and rated them on Presentation, Top Pastry, Bottom Pastry, Amount of Scallops and Taste. The maximum score is 35 points (taste and amount of scallops were rated higher)
The results so far: KTs at Deloraine 17, Tinnies at South Launceston 32, Ross Scallop Pie company 26.
The Tinnies version is quite an experience - huge volume, fabulous mild green curry sauce and masses of scallops

Digby Habel said...

Scallop pies - final comments. I heard a Radio National interview with an author who traveled Australia looking for the best pie (Meat or otherwise). A Scallop pie from Tassie came in 3rd. This whetted my curiosity and became a main mission for my trip.I scored scallop pies on presentation, Pastry top and bottom, amount of sauce and scallop and taste. Maximum score is 35.

The winner, Tinnies at Launceston. 29 points
Jackson & McRoss Battery Point, 25
Ingleside Cafe Evandale 23.5
Kentish Bakery Oatlands 21.5
Ross Scallop Pie Coy 20
KTs Deloraine 14

I was sad to miss Smiths at Salamanca Markets. But for now Tinnies carries the crown - for me at least

Anonymous said...

Information for those who do not understand the Scallop fishing in Tasmania. The season for fishing scallops is short and therefore most Tasmanian scallops caught are in fact blast frozen by the processors and are an excellent product when defrosted. Anyone who tells you they are using fresh Tasmanian Scallops in other than June-August is just not telling the truth. Many pie makers are currently using imported Thai or South American scallops with roe on because they are much cheaper-they will not tell you this.
My vote goes to the Tasmanian Scallop Pie Company in Ross-they are in Bakery31 near the Man-O-Ross pub. The pies have at least 6 scallops and are Tasmanian scallops in a mild 'Keens' curry sauce as is the tradition.

Anonymous said...

Seconded! I had one here just a couple of months ago and I'm yet to find its equal. Packed with plump scallops, sauce light, sweet, just enough curry tang, infused with scallop liquor; pastry buttery and firm with a crisp top - just perfect.

Anonymous said...

The best scallop pie ever in Tasmania was from Bruny Island Pies. As rated by Tas Fine Food Awards. No one has beaten the score