Chicken, lime and lemongrass might not be the most traditional sausage flavour, but it has come out tops in this year's national sausage competition.
Up to 500 sausages from all around the country were entered for consideration in this year's Devro Great NZ Sausage Competition, which was held in Auckland tonight.
The supreme award was given to the Mangawhai Meat Shop, in Northland, for a banger with the unique combination of chicken, lime and lemongrass.
The shop - which has won awards in the past - boasts other home-made delights including spicy Italian pork, honey lamb and rosemary, pork, beef and an award-winning smoked kransky, cabanossi and chorizo smoked in their own smokehouse.
The mastermind behind it is award-winning butcher Dan Klink, who has had a passion for butchery since he was a teenager.
Speaking at the ceremony, held at the Fresh Factory in Auckland, Klink thanked all those involved in the industry.
He also acknowledged his wife, who he said had to put up with him spending more than 80 hours at work every week and coming up with all sorts of [flavour] ideas to enter into competitions.
Judge Kathy Paterson, who is also the president of Food Writers New Zealand, called the winning banger "perfect."
"This sausage was mouth-watering. It really stood out from the rest because of its flavour combination which while unique, wasn't over the top - it was just perfect, really,'' she said.
Paterson praised the butcher behind the winning treat.
"Dan is an extremely passionate butcher and it really shows. The competition is all about finding the best and I'm confident we have done that.''
The 500 entries received this year were all examined carefully and tasted by a panel of judges made up of 24 people from different areas of the food industry.
There was a variety of categories in which the different sausages were entered into -including pork, poultry, beef, continental, black pudding, gourmet and traditional flavours.
The judges included top chefs, food writers and other heavyweight experts within the food industry.
The winner of the People's Choice Award went to New World Rolleston's pork and Tasmanian apple cider sausage.
The Wildcard Winner was awarded to Col's Butchery, in Mount Maunganui, for its free range chicken and parsley entry.