Photo : Darts Farm shop
Daylesford Organic Farm, Nr Kingham, Gloucestershire, 01608 731 700
This Cotswold foodies shopping trove is in a league of its own, having been farming organically for over 25 years and notching up its fair share of awards, including 2012 Best Organic Retailer. Growing over 100 types of seasonal fruit, veg and herbs people come from miles around for these and their prize winning Daylesford Cheddar is delicious. Has its own cookery school, with a huge range of courses, including foraging and holistic seasonal cooking. Even the free roaming animals on the farm are mostly fed on organic home grown crops. Has its own Summer Festival on 19th May covering just about everything farm worthy, including a dog show for the children. With an organic farm school, café and in house spa as part of the package you can easily hang out here all day – just budget for it.
Home Farm, Tarrant Gunville, Blandford, Dorset/Wiltshire 01258 830083
This family run business is a working farm and started up the farm shop to make the best use of their produce and ensure they could stay in farming. Their meat is their best seller but customers also love local Mrs Macks poppy seed dressing (try it and you’ll be hooked). They have great Home Farm hampers to choose from. They have their own free range livestock and pretty much everything they sell is local with organic fruit and great fruit juices. Delicious home made pork pies and they are well known for their great traditional breakfast (and delicious cakes) served in their tea room. Expect ducks and chickens to greet you as you arrive.
Lobbs Farm Shop, Heligan, St Austell, Cornwall, 01726 844411
Set in a beautiful Cornish location this is a great farm shop, bright and inviting, run and farmed by the three Lobb brothers. With a huge variety of products. much of the meat and vegetables are home grown on their own Kestle Farm and they have a great smoked fish selection. An added bonus is that it’s next to the magical gardens of Lost Gardens of Heligan. With their online service they provide a free postage bag to return the packaging for recycling. Delicious pies and home made sausages including lamb and mint and lamb with cranberry and rosemary, with the beef and lamb sold all reared on the farm. Great selection of homemade ready made meals too and a large selection of cheeses including the delicious Cornish Nettle Yarg, It’s also won the Taste of the West Best Online Retailer Of The Year for the past 2 years.
Darts Farm Shop, Topsham, Exeter, Devon, 01392 878200
Lots of recommendations for this gem. This family-run business started from a small shed selling their produce at the bottom of their field in the 1970s and has turned into a mecca for foodies selling great local produce. Stacks of awards for this food hall, including Best Retailer in the South West from the Food Reader Awards in 2012. On site, master butcher, fishmonger, baker, deli, cider maker and restaurant. The Fish Shed here is well known (lobster and chips here). With local artisan products, including Willie’s chocolate and great local cheeses such as Devon blue, there’s also Darts Farm Ciderworks to check out and great for Pick Your Own. Plus various shops including Fired Earth and independent boutiques and a health and beauty centre.
Udder Farm Shop, Manor Farm, E. Stour, Gillingham, Dorset,01747 838899
Stocking goodies mainly from Dorset and the surrounding area, such as from Fudges biscuits and Olives et Al. Great butchery with seasonal game and delicious meat and the butchers are always incredibly helpful. Good delicatessen stocking Dorset Blue Vinney and Stinking Bishop cheeses. They also make some great homemade products including their pates and sausage rolls. Plus good homemade frozen meals and great frozen fruit and croissants to store and stash. It now has a rather good café, where they do great breakfasts (big farmers helpings) and have a great children’s play area where you can see your children whilst eating. The café has a great view of Duncliffe too (go now for the bluebell walk).
White Row Farm Shop, Beckington, Frome, Somerset 01373 830798
We’ve reviewed this great farm shop before. This award winning (Local Food Farmer of the Year award in 2009) working farm shop sells both its own produce, including home reared pork from its Large White pigs and great seasonal veg, plus lots of local delights, such as dairy produce from Ivy House Farm, with its butchery run by the well thought of butcher Jon Thorners. A vast array of olive oils, and any jam you can conjure up, old fashioned sweets, delicious traybakes, duck confit and pates, stuffed squash and hams. Its mouth-watering bread comes from Hobbs House bakery and you’ll also find towers of home made meringues. Wonderful fresh fish counter The Scallop Shell (run by Gary Rosser) which not only sells great fish (langoustines, lobster, drooling already) terrines and frozen ready to cook fish pies but is also renowned for its amazing take away.
Farringtons, Home Farm, Main Street, Farrington Gurney, Bristol, Somerset 01761 452266
Great home grown fresh fruit and veg and particularly well known for their Wilja potatoes grown on their local red soil as well as the more unusual Cavolo Nero (or Tuscan Cale). Plus the choice of frozen fruit and veg it tries to sell as locally sourced produce as possible. Wonderful deli with over 50 cheeses, many from the West Country (including Longman cheese) and great charcuterie. Vast array of flavoured oils such as lemon and fig balsam, Tom’s pies, and mouthwatering homemade cakes and locally roasted coffees With other shops around it, including a florist, gift shop, beauty shop, baker and fish monger. Great café, with reasonable prices and nearly all homemade. Cool new “Udder” room where demos often take place. With the Thoughtful Bread Company on the premises you’re guaranteed to have tantalizing fresh bread too. 2012 UK Farm Retailer of the Year (FARMA) and great PYO Tulips here too.
Washingpool Farm Shop, North Allington, Bridport, Dorset, 01308 459549
This farm shop is within walking distance of Bridport and is incredibly well thought of by locals. It’s a market garden selling, fruit and veg and salad (much of it grown there) plus pork, beef and eggs. It also sells lots of local produce that it sources from farmers markets, like products from the South Devon Chilli Farm, Moorish Purbeck Ice cream, River cottage yogurt and chocolate from Chococo. Best selling products are Furleigh wine and Denhay Farmhouse Cheddar. The Farmers Kitchen serves great lunches including soufflés and Dorset Portobello mushrooms. Many awards for this farm shop and Taste of Dorset Best Farm Shop in 2009. Found at the end of a sand belt, its free draining soil makes it perfect for growing produce. It also runs tastings as part of the Bridport Food Festival.
Riverford Farm Shop, Staverton, Totnes, Devon, 01803 762851
We all know how fresh and delicious and full of good ideas the Riverford boxes are but their farm shops are just as good. With three shops, the Staverton one is particularly great. All that’s best and in season, this is very much a farm with locally sourced and organic products wherever poss. All meat is local and additive free and most is organic, with award-winning Riverford sausages, vegetable pasties and delicious organic beef pasties. They sell Westcountry smokehouse products as well as Luscombe cider and their own Riverford chutneys and preserves. Great recipe suggestions and if you can’t get there – their boxes are, of course, great.
Trevaskis Farm, Gwinear, Hayle, Cornwall, 01209 713 931
Set within 28 acres this family-run farm grows 70 different crops here over the seasons, including tayberries, squashes, peas, herbs and figs and has a fantastic PYO. Originally started after farming no longer seemed economically viable, they began the PYO, with something to pick every month through the summer, whilst continuing to rear their rare breeds. They have a great restaurant, The Farmhouse Kitchen Garden, with delicious breakfast, including the Full Trevaskis (with hogs pudding) and amazing cakes. The farm shop is known as Trevaskis Market, which not only produces delicious fine fruit, veg and meat, has an amazing deli and fish monger (some of the best sardines I’ve ever tasted) but also sells other things you need for a weekly shop at decent prices. Great frozen fruits and Willy Wallers local icecreams with their own fruit. It’s all here and Gwithian beach just around the corner…
Padstow Farm Shop, Trethillick Farm, Padstow, Cornwall, 01841 533060
This lovely farm shop sells products from the farm or as local as possible, in season and if possible within Cornwall. It’s so well thought of it is supplier to restuarants such as Fifteen, Rick Steins and Eden Project. Field margins are left uncultivated, encouraging endangered wildlife. They also now make Padstow Pasta. Heaven for cheese heads stocking Miss Muffet, St Endellion Brie, Yarg, Cornish Blue. Skinners Beer is sold here - all good with us and great online shop if you can’t get there. Chilli sauce from the Cornish Chill Company, Roskilly’s products with one of their best sellers being Roskilly Spicy Plum Chutney. Lots of recommendations from our readers.
We’ve also had recommendations for Kimbers Farm Shop in Charlton Musgrove, Somerset which the Kimbers have farmed for over 300 years. Particularly delicious meat and they’re well known for their Welfare Friendly Rose Veal