20% off



Macneil's Smokehouse

This award-winning husband and wife team are passionate about teasing out the best flavour from their smoked products. They do this using traditional, artisan Norwegian smoking methods and the best, locally sourced ingredients possible. Tony Macneil explains what sparked his passion…


Who are the people behind Macneil’s Smokehouse?

Macneil’s Smokehouse is owned and run by me, Tony, and my wife Bee Macneil. We lead a small team of passionate staff.


How did your business come about?

When our children were small I was working as a head chef in a hotel on a tiny island in Norway and commuting every couple of weeks back to Worcestershire. The island, and the hotel, were owned by the owner of the largest privately owned salmon farm in Norway.

I worked my menus to incorporate the best of the owner’s products and built a smoker in the caves underneath the hotel to smoke the salmon and trout for use in the hotel and for sale in the hotel shop.

The shop had local customers but was also on the sailing route so brought customers from across Norway by boat, including the queen of Norway!

With our children growing I decided to stop the commute and move back to the UK to be at home more. When I left I brought back with a large vintage Norwegian Smoker that the hotel owner had been keeping in a storage unit, unused.

Once home with the smoker and with a desire to tip the balance of family and work life while creating my own products, Macneil’s Smokehouse was born.

You use a Norwegian kiln and Norwegian smoking methods – what’s special about the Norwegian way of smoking products?

The kiln itself doesn’t affect the Norwegian style, it’s all in the wood. Like Scandinavians, we use a beech wood in our smoke. This has a beautiful mild flavour that doesn’t overpower the quality of the fish and meat we smoke, allowing you to taste the full complex flavours of our smoked products.


Describe the process in a couple of sentences…

For our Smoked salmon for example, the salmon is first cured in salt for approximately 1 day, then washed to remove the salt. It is then dried then smoked for the best part of a day and rested to allow the smoke to properly develop before being packed ready for shops and restaurants across the UK.

The smoker is what’s called a ‘friction smoker’. So the smoke is generated by a specially dried plank of wood that is forced on to a fast moving wheel which generates smoke, not fire. The smoke is then fed into the smoking chamber where all of our products are laid out on shelves so that every one is evenly smoked.

How much salmon do you smoke a week?

It depends, but at busy times we can smoke up to 200 sides of salmon per day.


What makes your products so good (and multi-award-winning?)

It’s hard to put your finger on the reason we’re winning awards as although we are so proud of every one of them, we’re just thrilled that other people agree with us that our products are lovely. We both come from a catering background where flavour and the customer experience are at the heart of everything we do.

We are passionate about taste and so we have perfected the recipes to our own tastes and standards and are rigorous and uncompromising about it, so I guess it has translated to our customers and award judges too.

Where is your fish/meat sourced?

We source our products from a wide variety of places as our first concern is quality. Where possible we source locally first as the local food economy is of huge importance and we have a wealth of produce to utilise.

For example we use Weston’s Old Rosie cider in our Herefordshire Cider and Apple Salmon cure mix and we use Gloucestershire Free Range Chicken for our smoked chicken breast.

Fish, however, doesn’t always know which country’s waters they’re swimming in, so the country of origin can change. Our salmon is Scottish, sourced from as far North as we can go as the colder the water the better the quality of fish. Our trout is British – as they are grown on land-based farms.


What is your best-selling product?

By far our Smoked Salmon, followed by our Herefordshire Cider and Apple Cured Salmon and Smoked Mackerel.

Which product should customers try next?

The smoked duck breast is beautiful. It’s succulent and tender, cooked and ready to eat so can be sliced up and put in a salad or sandwich. But the moistness we retain in the meat allows you to cook with it if you’d like to – we love it pan fried for a few minutes with teriyaki sauce!

Valid until 4th May 2023
Simply swipe your Taste Club card at the till to receive 20% off the MacNeil's Smokehouse range. Offer is limited to 3 redemptions per Taste Club member. Only available whilst stocks last. Offer is not transferable. Discount cannot be retrospectively applied. Subject to availability.