On your visit to Bath be sure to sample at least one unique local delicacy… and experience a taste of history at the same time!
To have a taste of Bath delivered to your door, head to our Online Shop to order some of the city's specialities.
Sally Lunn Bun
According to legend, Sally Lunn, a Huguenot refugee, arrived in Bath in 1680 and started work with a baker in Lilliput Alley (now North Parade Passage). Sally introduced the baker to her light, airy, brioche-style bun, which soon became popular at the public breakfasts and afternoon teas that were fashionable at the time. The recipe for the bun is still a closely guarded secret today and is mentioned on the deeds of Sally Lunn’s Historic Eating House and Museum, one of the oldest houses in Bath that features a kitchen museum in the basement and a characterful restaurant on three floors. The Sally Lunn bun is famous across the world and incredibly popular with visitors. You simply can't leave Bath without sampling a taste of Sally's wares!
The Bath Bun (not to be confused with the Sally Lunn bun!) was invented by eighteenth century physician Dr William Oliver. The doctor's buns were originally made from a rich, sweet egg and butter dough topped with crushed caraway seed comfits. However, they were so tasty his patients’ waistlines expanded at an alarming rate and had to quickly be replaced with the far plainer, savoury Bath Oliver biscuit; you have been warned! Today's Bath bun is still made from sweet yeast dough (often with a whole sugar lump in the centre). To try a Bath Bun for yourself, visit the Bath Bun Tea Shoppe or Hands Tearoom.
The biscuits known as Bath Olivers are a popular accompaniment for cheese and can be found on the shelves of most supermarkets in the UK. They were originally designed by Dr William Oliver, a successful eighteenth century physician who helped to treat the sick visiting Bath for the curative properties of the thermal waters. When Dr Oliver died he left £100, a sack of flour and his secret formula to his coachman, who subsequently set up a shop on Green Street and became rich on the proceeds. In tandem with architect John Wood and Master of Ceremonies, Beau Nash, Dr. Oliver was instrumental in founding the Royal Mineral Water Hospital to look after the less fortunate.
This local speciality is made from the lower part of pig cheeks, often cured like bacon. They can be served hot or cold but are rather fatty, which might account for their decline in popularity. If you fancy trying Bath Chaps, you can find them on the menu at the Garrick’s Head.
Bath Soft Cheese
Made just outside of the city from an ancient recipe, the Bath Soft Cheese range includes Wyfe of Bath, Kelston Park, Bath Blue and the original Bath Soft. To sample and purchase these delicious cheeses, visit Bath Farmer's Market, held in Green Park Station every Saturday morning or take a tour of their dairy farm in Kelston to learn more about the cheese making process.
Alongside a well stocked bar packed full of different gins, don't miss the unique Bath Gin at the Canary Gin Bar, the recipe for which was created here in the city using local ingredients. If it tickles your taste buds, why not buy a bottle to take home from the Visitor Information Centre Gift Shop or book onto a gin making masterclass to create a gin with your own flavour profile?
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