Cornishman opens Denmark’s first pasty shop

A Cornishman has taken on a nation famed for its baking ability by opening a successful Cornish pasty shop in the home of the Danish pastry.

Jason Mather partnered with Crantock Bakery to open the Cornish Pasty House in the Latin quarter of Copenhagen earlier this year.

Jason claims his is the first Cornish pasty shop in Denmark: “I love pasties, and I was sure that the Danes would too. I have been delighted how the people of Copenhagen have taken to them.

“Denmark is famous for its bakeries but they mostly specialise in sweet products. I felt there was a gap in the market for a quality product and wanted to see how the Cornish pasty fared against the Danish pastry.

Keen to offer the Scandinavians an authentic Cornish product, Jason selected Crantock Bakery to provide him with a range of pasties and sausage rolls.

Jason is even able to market his products as genuine Cornish pasties as Crantock’s follow the rules set down by the recent decision from the European Union to award the pasty Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) status.

And Jason, who sells his pasties for 30 Danish Krone (approximately £3.50), feels the secret to the success of his business is down to good service and a great product.

“We sell a lot of pasties and sausage rolls to the expats from English-speaking countries such as Britain, Ireland, and Australia however the Danish have really taken to them. The traditional Cornish pasty is the best selling product by far.”

Jason grew up in St Austell but left aged 17 and spent five years in the RAF before travelling the world in the tourism industry, eventually settling in Copenhagen in 1996.

Wherever he went though he always baked Cornish pasties for himself, friends he made, and eventually his own family.

“My 13 year old son is crazy for them. I’ve got a sister in St Austell and one in St Blazey while my parents split their time between St Austell and Spain. My son and I return to Cornwall three of four times a year and whenever we get the train from Paddington, he’s instantly able to sniff out the nearest shop.”

And his top tips for making the perfect pasty? “A dusting of flour, a knob of butter, the use of white pepper not black pepper, and if you want to be really extravagant use Cornish clotted cream as well as butter.”

Jason left a job as a hospital porter to start The Cornish Pasty House with a Danish business partner and says he has never been happier: “Some say that running your own business is stressful, but I’ve never been less stressed in my whole life.

“Setting up the deal with Crantock’s was extremely simple. I had a meeting with one of their guys over here. I visited the factory, spent the day tasting the different products I wanted to stock, and set up a deal. It was important to me that they hand crimp all of their pasties to a traditional recipe.”

The Cornish Pasty House is helped by being located in one of most cosmopolitan areas in Copenhagen. “Since we’ve opened we’ve got our regulars who get there lunch here every day. Some already know my major baking times, so they know exactly when to come in.”

It is these regulars that mean that Jason is already has plans to expand the business by increasing the range of products, before looking at the possibility of opening more shops across Denmark and making the most of the city’s love of cycling.

“Copenhagen is a massively pedestrianised place and there are very few cars. Lots of people sell food from converted bicycles and this is definitely something we are looking into.”

Chris Ridge, Crantock’s export manager, is delighted by Jason’s success. “We export our products throughout Europe to countries such as France and Cyprus. We know that when people are living or are on holiday abroad they love a genuine hand crimped Cornish pasty made to a traditional recipe. We wish Jason the best of luck in the future and look forward to working with him further.”

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