The Fortnight team caught up with Hilary and Nick, the brilliant entrepreneurs behind The Edinburgh Butter Company about their business and story behind it.

Tell us about yourselves and what you do

We are Hilary and Nick and we own and run The Edinburgh Butter Company, we make premium Scottish Cultured Butter! We supply numerous top hotels, restaurants, cafes and delis in and around Edinburgh.


What made you change career to start making butter?!

We had been running a Supper Club called Stockbridge Social Club for 2 years alongside our day jobs. We’d already decided that we didn’t want to open a restaurant as we knew how hard that was, but we wanted to start something that we could build and run ourselves.

It was on holiday in Australia that we found they had a thriving Artisan Cultured Butter scene. We love butter, so though why don’t we try making that when we get home? We spent a good 8 months feeding our Supper Club guests ‘butter boards’ made up of different flavours of butters that we’d created, making sure to get feedback along the way. In December 2017 we decided to end the Supper Clubs and focus on trying to build the butter empire. The first 3 months were spent emailing our contact list from the suppers and literally driving around Edinburgh delivering sticks of butter to people. We’d do bits and pieces of social media along the way, but not much, then one day we got a call from The Balmoral Hotel inviting us for a meeting; the upshot being that they wanted to buy our butter! It was at that point that we thought we really might be on to something.


What makes your butter different/special?

Well, firstly, our butter is cultured, which means that we make our own creme fraiche and then churn that to produce our butter. It’s packed full of good live bacteria but also has a deeper, richer flavour to it as opposed to butter which is made straight from churning cream. The way we make our butter follows traditional French techniques; French butter is arguably viewed as the best butter in the world but there is no reason why we couldn’t produce something just as good as, if not better than, in Scotland! We put a great deal of time and effort into producing our butter.  We really care about the production methods and want to keep it as artisanal as possible – that way, we have a great feel for the quality as opposed to putting cream in one end and getting a packaged product out of the other, which is what happens with 95% of the rest of mass-produced butters.

Why do you think it’s so important for the foodservice trade to source quality butter like yours?

I think there are a couple of main reasons; firstly, supporting local is a big one for us.  If the quality of the product is as good as, if not better than, an imported product then there is no need for any business to buy in what they need – and it’s always better to support local. If we’re talking specifically about our butter.  it really comes down to the care and attention we put into producing our product. Nothing is added, it’s completely natural and packed full of good live bacteria, so it not only tastes delicious it’s good for you!


Any fascinating facts about butter that people might not be aware of?

As at 2016 only 14% of butter sold in Scotland was actually made in Scotland – a crazy fact.

Apparently, butter was so important and valuable to Norsemen that they were buried with tubs of it to take over to the afterlife!

You have ambitious plans – tell us more!

We do indeed, there are many plans! On a personal level we want to become ‘Scotland’s Premium Butter producer’ and reduce the amount of French imported butter. We have a plan to get there and just need the support from local Scottish business. Our roadmap includes making additional products such as Creme Fraiche, Butter Sheets for Pastry, Buttermilk and getting back to producing a range of flavoured butters.

We also really want to start creating a network of smaller producers in and around Edinburgh. There are quite a few food networks around Scotland that do some great work supporting local businesses. Scotland’s larder is exceptional and there are some great people producing some amazing products, but as a small producer it’s hard. There’s a lot learn, and you really must get out there and figure it all out yourself. One step further than the producer network that we’d like to get to is to build a Food and Drink Innovation Hub (don’t worry the final name will be a bit more catchy than that) – essentially a purpose built location where small producers can locate and that allows them access to support whether it be Environmental Health, Food Standards, Production Facilities, Accountancy Support, Marketing Specialists, Insurance Advice, Packaging Help, Pest Control, Waste Management, Sustainability Specialists, Grant Application Support, Logistics Network, Legal Advice, Networking Spaces and Events as well as workshops and training. Essentially a one-stop- shop to support growing small businesses and give them the best possible chance of success, which will not only benefit the local economy but also the wider Scottish economy as help is given to scale the businesses outside of the country.


Finally, what’s your favourite way to enjoy your delicious butter?

Easy! A bacon roll with our cultured butter, cut like cheese, and some delicious thick- cut smoked bacon.


Find out more on & follow on Instagram @theedinburghbutterco