When we are off wandering the British countryside, we make a concerted effort to check out the local produce. And an excellent way of doing that is to drop into the nearest farm shop. Farm shops are a relatively new phenomenon to the UK having taken wing about 10 or more years ago, and since then they have never looked back. We were fortunate on our West Country Tiki Tour to be in possession of the book “Wild Guide“, which besides pointing us to jaw dropping scenery & beaches or historical sites or places to stay, also listed many of the food stalls along our journey. And it had high praise for the Padstow Farm Shop (founded in 2006).
When we enter a farm shop we often quickly pick up on a vibe and the vibe here was exceedingly good. Everything just seemed so right – and our intuition was 100% spot on as this place does farm shop in spades. Most of what they sell here comes from their own farm, and if not from their farm, then from farms within Cornwall. Much of the land is farmed under the Countryside Stewardship model – an environmental process where no sprays or fertilisers are employed. And the field margins are left uncultivated which creates a better habitat for rare species of plants & also encourages endangered wildlife such as the corn bunting, barn owl, grey partridge and hare. And to confirm the good vibe feel, Padstow Farm Shop & Farm have been named as South West regional winners in The RSPB Nature of Farming Awards for 2013. And the farm shop gets 100% of its electricity from a wind turbine – phew, what a vibe!
A quick tour… as you walk in through the front doors, you are greeted by a cornucopia of local produce in most excellent shape. Many a meal could be assembled from these baskets swollen with goods.
And just to the left of the veggie section is the Padstow Farm Shop’s own butchery where, again, locally reared meat is on offer where the majority comes from the Watson Smyth family farm (they own the joint).
And if you are looking to put together a summer picnic or host a BBQ for some friends, all the ingredients and top notch choices are found here – from wine to cider to cheese to sweets and crisps.
And a very special mention needs to be made of the Padstow Pasta from Cornwall as it is a unique product to the UK. As the photo below states, this pasta is made from home grown durum wheat which is then traditionally milled at The Cornish Mill & Bakehouse. And a very odd coincidence occurred as we were taking these photos, it suddenly dawned on us that we had actually won a bag of the Padstow Pasta in the Saturday Guardian’s Cook magazine contest. And it worked a treat too for a fine pasta dish….
So if by luck or chance or planning you happen to be floating around the Padstow region, be sure to pay a visit to the Padstow Farm Shop & stock up…or order online.