Friday, 19 June 2009

Buckfast Cheesecake – och no!

I know over the past few days I have been in a reflective mood. This evening, I thought I would be light-hearted and share this recent story with you relating to food, but in order to do so, I have to give you a brief background, so please bare with me, hopefully it will make you smile or maybe even cringe a little.
Buckfast Tonic Wine is a fortified wine produced by Buckfast Abbey in Devon, south west England. The wine was first produced in the 1890s by the Benedictine monks at Buckfast Abbey using a recipe brought over from France. The tonic wine was originally sold in small quantities by the Abbey itself, as a medicine with the slogan "Three small glasses a day, for good health and lively blood". Please note this slogan most certainly does not apply today.

Buckfast is a popular drink amongst some sections of the Scottish community. It is what cheap nasty Cider is to the English, and Thunderbird is to the Americans – gut rot. Stop and ask any person in Scotland of their Buckfast memories and they will more often than not, associate it with drunken, disorderly and anti-social behaviour. You are more likely to see a smashed bottle or empty bottle floating on streets of Scotland, than a person ordering a glass in the local pub. Aside from 'Buckie', other names for it include 'Commotion Lotion' and 'Wreck-the-hoose (house) Juice'.
But let’s not be too harsh, Buckfast has recently been given a makeover in the carnation of, wait for it ‘Buckfast Cheesecake’. You may go, what’s the big deal, well think really cheap Cider Cheesecake and you may just understand some peoples reservation towards it – thick, sickly sweet and like cough syrup (apparently). The idea for this boozy dessert came from the mind of pastry chef Debbie Fuller in Lanarkshire to compliment the restaurants Scottish menu which already includes whisky and haggis fritters and Irn Bru sorbet.

James Perrie, executive head chef, said he wasn't surprised at the cheesecake's success. He said: "It’s very rich, very, very rich, but the mascarpone cheese dulls that down so it’s quite a mellow flavour in your mouth.”

This Scottish delicacy will now sit next to the 'Deep Fried Mars bar' and 'Irn Bru ice-cream'. It’s a novelty that will surely take off, and will no doubt be found on Scottish menus for the tourists and the curious to try for the many years to come. I am sure these Scottish culinary delights will later be joined by 'Irn Bru Crème Brulee' and 'Buckfast jelly', but I truly cannot see any of these creations being made by a Scottish ma or pa for afternoon tea canae? Yet it will become part of Scottish culture, for the tourist eh!

If your interested in seeing this dish on a plate, the link can be found here to BBC Scotland. Enjoy!


  1. Your post brought back memories! We used to keep bees when I was young, and when we needed a new Queen bee we would order it from the Monks at Buckfast Abbey. It arrived through the post in a little wooden box with wire mesh. I think the monks there used to make mead as well??

  2. I am so glad it was good memories!

    Wow, and that is an intesting memory 'Queen bee being delivered in a little wooden box', that's something you don't think of.

    Coincidentally, my membership for the Bumble Bee Conservation Trust (BBCT) came through this morning.

  3. that post made me laugh - I am not sure that we have buckfast in Australia but I think I have heard of it from E my scottish partner - it is not where bucks fizz comes from is it?

  4. I love cheesecake but this does not sound super tasty!

  5. Hi Johanna,So nice to have you over at my blog.
    Glad the post made you laugh.

    You must ask E if he has any memories of buckfast??? It is also one of those drinks that the 'young' try when experimenting with alcohol for the first time, as it is affordable with pocket money.

    Please do come by again.

  6. Hiya Michele,

    I think you might be right, but who knows. I still won't be tasting it, as my guess is the top layer of buckfast is set with gelatine, hence not suitable for vegetarians.


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