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A few things at Christmas can be disappointing, but none more so than not getting a good glaze on a ham. Preferably, this should be done the day it's served, nothing beats warm slices of ham with sticky ham glaze.

The key is ham-to-oven ratio – there needs to be a good volume of hot air around the joint. Fan-forced is helpful but not essential.

If you haven't grabbed a jar of our housemade spiced port ham glaze, follow Andrew McConnell's stout glaze recipe below or substitute for your own ham glaze.

Whether you have a whole ham on the bone, a half ham or a boneless ham, the instructions below are the same.

If you are using a half ham, place tin foil over the cut side of the ham for during the entirety of the cooking process, this prevents it from drying out.


1 cooked ham on the bone, skin on

Whole cloves (approximately 3 tbsp)

2 cups brown sugar and 500g brown sugar

4 cups stout

1 cup fresh orange juice, strained

2 wide strips orange peel


Preheat your oven to 220°C.

To make the glaze, place the stout, sugar, orange juice and peel in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Lower the heat and reduce the mixture by half, or until it is lightly syrupy.

Using your fingers and the tip of a knife, carefully peel the skin from the ham, leaving as much of the fat underneath as you can. Gently rub 500g brown sugar all over the fat of the ham. With a sharp knife, lightly score the fat in a diamond pattern through the fat but not quite to the flesh and stud the diamonds with cloves.

Line a heavy roasting tray with tin foil and then baking paper on top and place the ham on a rack inside it along with 1 cup of water. Bake the ham for 20 mins to warm it through & get colour before glazing. Take the ham out of the oven and pat the glaze all over the ham with a pastry brush. Return the ham to the oven and bake, re-applying the glaze every 10–15 minutes, until the ham is deeply coloured and sticky.

Serve with pickled cherries, Meatsmith housemade mustard.