isle of ewe smokehouse #Unplugged


isle of ewe smokehouse #unplugged by Scotlands most delicious food blogger Graeme Taylor

Loch Ewe_240113_0037


One of the real joys of holidaying in Scotland is getting to discover local producers and cook with their produce. This year whilst in Gairloch I had the delights of fresh picked local chanterelles from Poolewe weekly market and squat lobsters from Dry Island. However it was the chance discovery of Isle of Ewe Smokehouse on the last day that was the real highlight. Getting to meet Paula and see her passion and energy for the food that her and Alistair are producing was a joy, and the impromptu tour of the smokehouse that has yielded multiple Great Taste Awards stars was wonderful. The purity of flavour of everything they are producing was quite outstanding and I’m delighted they agreed to a short interview to introduce Isle of Ewe Smokehouse.

When did you start the smoking business and what inspired you to set up in Aultbea?

We had both met whilst working on superyachts as crew in the Med, Alistair had previously worked for ten years for two of the biggest smokehouses on the West Coast, Inverawe & Loch Fyne Smokehouse, so he had plenty of smoking expertise.

view from the deck of a yacht

In 2005/6 we settled back in Edinburgh,  me working freelance cooking & Alistair teaching sailing and yacht deliveries.  We also worked at Fenton Barns Farmshop & Café, East Lothian, Alistair in the Farm shop and myself cooking in the café. This fuelled our love of great food especially Scottish Artisan producers. All the time we were looking for a business that we could run together somewhere in Scotland.

I was cooking on a freelance job for a stalking party at the Letterewe Estate on Loch Maree, Wester Ross and the local smokehouse, Sleepy Hollow Smokehouse based in Aultbea, supplied the smoked salmon. It was sublime and we were both completely blown away by the pureness of the flavour; great salmon and robust smokiness. I had never tasted fish like this before….it was love at first bite! During those few days there together the whole majesty of the landscape: mountains and glens, sea and loch captured our hearts.

Haunted by the evocative north west highlands life in Edinburgh was not where we wanted to be. We found out that the owners of the smokehouse Andrew & Jenny Wiseman wanted to sell Sleepy Hollow Smokehouse, and in March 2007 we bought it, smoking our fish in an old croft house that Andrew had converted. He owned the building so we rented it from him until we could find a suitable property to buy that would give us a building for the smokehouse and somewhere to live.

The following August we bought our crofters cottage on the shore of Loch Ewe with enough land attached to build a purpose built smokehouse to our specifications, moving into these premises in January 2010. In July 2011 we rebranded and changed our name to Isle of Ewe Smokehouse, the isle sits out in the middle of the loch, we can almost touch it, this has given us more provenance to our brand and is truly us.

Isle of Ewe smokehouse archive photo

With such a wide range of products do you work with people you know to source the raw materials  or was it very much trying out suppliers until you found ones you liked?

We source our raw materials from producers and suppliers with the same kinds of ethos and provenance that we give to our products with all our fish being Scottish and sustainable. Our fresh salmon is from a sustainable source, Scottish Seafarms is an independent Scottish company,  they have freedom food & label rouge accreditation and provide us with stunning fresh Scottish salmon. All our scallops are hand dived from Keltic Seafare and hail from Shetland. With the our small but perfectly formed deli inside the smokehouse we have found suppliers of stunning produce to sell alongside our products, it’s all very addictive particularly in Scotland as we have a massive selection of artisan food producers such as Great Glen Charcuterie, Highland Fine Cheeses, Culliesse, isle of skye sea salt & Mr Trotters.

Isle of Skye_tubs Aug15


Smoked hake is a really unique (and wonderful!) product, but what possessed you to start smoking hake?

We both love fresh hake and were glad to see it back on the sustainable list, so thought it would be just dandy smoked. Also we tried rock turbot, commonly known as catfish which was great hot smoked.  Our smoked hake was awarded a whooping 2 star Great Taste award in 2012, ever since it has been much loved by our customers and a regular fixture on the smokehouse dinner menu with us.


In the beginning did you go through many brining recipes before coming up with the rum, sugar and salt which you use?

No, we were so aware of not changing the way that the smoked salmon tastes.  We have kept strictly to the same way that Andrew had always smoked his fish. Dark Rum and Dark Brown Sugar. If it ain’t broke…

What is your favourite product which you make and do you have a favourite meal/recipe to use it in?

We love it all, but especially hot smoked hand dived scallops, firstly open a chilled bottle of favourite prosecco, drink preferably with your beloved whilst making a risotto bianco and having a good blether.  At the last minute add in a good plug of prosecco and once off the heat stir in sliced smoked scallops! Finish with fresh herbs lovage or parsley or basil or cracked black pepper, drizzle of olive oil & zesty zingy lemon to squeeze. A feast fit for a King, Queen or Diva.

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What does the future hold for Isle of Ewe Smokehouse?

Sell more fish from our new shiny office our Smoked Salmon HQ….. expansion of our new rebranded Fine Food Emporium at the smokehouse, discover more amazing products to stock……. develop our range of smoked foods……enjoy our children…… on the beach and dance like nobody’s watching!







You can follow Isle of Ewe Smokehouse on Twitter @smokedbyewe and Facebook Isle of Ewe Smokehouse


All images used courtesy of Isle of Ewe Smokehouse

About Graeme

I want to tell the world of the natural larder and eclectic cuisine of Scotland

Divine Provenance

West Coast Living….

Award winning artisan smoked salmon with Divine Provenance

In this amazing location we smoke & produce our unique hand crafted artisan products for you.


Sustainable & Freedom Food

Using the finest Scottish Sustainable Atlantic Salmon with Freedom Food Accrediation.   Smoking fish all year round and sending out our award winning products to our customers wholesale & retail in the UK & Europe. For all wholesale customer enquiries, please call Paula or Sally at Smoked Salmon HQ for more information  44 (0)1445 731304.

We designed & built our smokehouse, veiwing gallery & deli on the shores of loch ewe in 2010 and welcome visitors to our artisan smokehouse deli on the shore.

Funky Packaging & delicious gifts by mail order, despatched by us for ewe. Gift Boxes, Fabulous Feasts & Delicious dining…..

gift box

Packed with plenty ice to ensure your products reach you as fresh as a fresh thing.


The kilns are lit and the fish are smoking……… we love fish at isle of ewe XDSC_0043



Super Fish Super Food

Omega-3 – The Super Fish Oil

We love fish……………… Here is our Top of the Fishy Pops 

When it comes to deciding what to eat we have a choice between high-fat superficial foods, or the wonders of fish and other seafoods that are rich in omega-3. These foods help boost brainpower, keep hearts healthy and much more, because it’s not superficial, it’s superfishoil!

Our bodies can’t produce omega-3 naturally, so we should try to enjoy fish and other seafoods at least twice a week. But this doesn’t have to be tricky – more than just a healthy choice, fish can also be delicious and simple, and we will show you how.

Fillet or finger, fresh, frozen or tinned, smoked, when it’s superfishoil it’s all good!

Check out our Top 20 of Omega’s

To measure this we look at how many milligrams (mg) of Omega-3 there are in 100g of each seafood. Here’s our top 20 rundown!

  •  20… it’s one of the most popular white fish on our plates. Thank goodness it’s got130mg Omega-3. We’re talking, baked Cod!
  • At 19… you won’t have the blues for long thanks to the 130mg Omega-3 in… grilled Sole!
  • At 18… there are 140 good reasons to throw another one on the barbie – with 140mg Omega-3 it’s grilled King Prawns!At 17… related to the shellfish supremo that is lobster, with 170mg Omega-3… it’s boiled Langoustine.
  • At 16… with 190mg Omega-3, this family favourite is perfect for fish pies… it’s steamed Haddock!


  • At 15… celebrate with a cocktail or two. Containing 200mg Omega-3… it’s Coldwater Prawns! Loving Jamie & Jimmy’s Lango’s, Langostine, Campaign.
  • At 14… guaranteed to conjure up images of sunny, summer holidays, with 250mg Omega-3… it’s bakedCalamari in Batter!
  • At 13… with 320mg Omega-3 and a super sarnie filling… it’s Tinned Tuna in Brine (that’s a lot more than Tinned Tuna in Sunflower Oil with 180mg)!
  • At 12… with 420mg, you can be confident your children are getting an omega-3 fix while eating one of their favourite foods… it’s grilled or baked Cod Fish Fingers!
  • At 11… Omega-3 gives you a sporting chance at good health, so 540mg could probably boost your…Mussels!


  • Top 10 time … this classic pub grub is worth an omega-3 toast. With 740mg Omega-3, say cheers to… baked Scampi in breadcrumbs!
  • At 9… with 760mg Omega-3 there’s definitely a time and plaice for this fish… it’s baked and breadedPlaice.
  • At 8… it’s all about the bass. For a top up of 1230mg omega-3 to music to your ears it’s… bakedSeabass!
  • At 7… the white meat has 70mg Omega-3, but the brown meat is the true Omega-3 winner. You’ll find1300mg in Crab!
  • At 6… posh up your pasta by adding a tin or two. With 1340mg Omega-3… it’s Tinned Pink Salmon. Or add a little more colour with Tinned Red Salmon and get 1650mg Omega-3.


  • Into the top 5 now… and with 1720mg Omega-3 it will leave you with more of a smile than a pout! It’s baked Rainbow Trout!
  • At number 4… it’s that entertaining classic with 2280mg Omega-3… it’s Smoked Salmon!  Yipee!!!!!
  • At 3… with 2500mg Omega-3, it’s a tasty toast topping… Canned Sardines in Brine. But for an extra boost go for Canned Sardines in Tomato Sauce and you’ll get even more – 2980mg Omega-3.
  • At 2… narrowly missing out on top spot, and with an impressive 3350mg… it’s grilled Kippers!  or Fresh Herring which will be available from March April.

Number 1

  • Number 1 And top of the fishy pops, the great big hootenany when it comes to the top level of Omega-3… with 4830mg per 100g, is the mighty Mackerel!


So there it is! Mackerel comes out on top when it comes to delivering some serious Omega-3 goodness! But thanks to this unique fat being found in good amounts in so many other varieties of seafood, it’s easy to get the recommended 3150mg Omega-3 fats in a week. Just tuck into two portions of seafood a week (with one of them being oily) and your body and mind will reap the benefits!

Kippers for Breakfast, Smoked Salmon for lunch and Marvelous Mackerel for Dinner.