You don't have to delve very hard to find things that the county can be proud of. There's Tiptree Jam, Grayson Perry, my beloved Southend Pier and the big fat cockles from Leigh-on-Sea. And this stuff - Maldon Sea Salt. Not probably the best salt in the world but definitely!
It's hard to get in Devon. Lots of the shops here now sell Cornish Sea Salt instead, also a fine product with less food miles. But it's not the same! Maldon salt has a unique flakiness, a satisfying feel on the touch And there's a taste beyond the saltiness that I can't quite identify but seems to me to be the essence of all things seaside. I'm sure if you asked Jamie Oliver, another Essex person, he'd be in total agreement with me.
I had a little moan to the folks at the company about its relative lack of availability down here. To thank me for their troubles they sent me this lovely gift which includes a smoked variety of salt. Now that's going to be interesting on my chips!