7 of the best farm shops in Dorset
PUBLISHED: 18:24 07 October 2019
Want to keep your food miles low and your taste experience high? Alice Cooke reveals some of the county's best farm shops
Gullivers Farm Shop and Cafe, West Moors
As the worthy winner of the 'Best Independent Retailer' at the Dorset Food, Drink and Farming Awards 2019, Gullivers Farm Shop is a must-visit if you're after the very best locally sourced produce. Here you'll find meat from their very own farm, freshly baked bread (trust us, you'll struggle not to eat the entire loaf) and an excellently stocked deli counter with cakes that are the stuff of dreams. They offer a range of handpicked wines, ales and ciders too.
Symondsbury Farm Shop & Store
Situated in the beautifully restored Manor Yard this business is a cross between a farm shop and a convenience store. Local produce includes organically-grown vegetables from Symondsbury Estate's own garden and bread from Evershot bakery. Alongside, in the old milking shed, is the Symondsbury Kitchen, which uses the same seasonal local produce you find in the shop. It offers breakfast, brunch, lunch and afternoon tea, and your canine friends are welcome to come along too.
Washingpool Farm Shop, North Allington
Situated next to the family's farm this farm shop just north of Bridport has won numerous awards including a Taste of the West Gold. Most of what they sell is made, grown or reared on the premises including their own beef, pork, lamb and vegetables, alongside homemade ready meals, soups and cakes which you can also enjoy in their café. Washingpool are keen supporters of smaller food and drink businesses so you will often find local produce here that you won't find anywhere else.
Gold Hill Organics, Child Okeford
Gold Hill has been growing organic vegetables for over 25 years and was one of the first organic growers in the south west to be certified by the Soil Association. Their delightful farm shop in the village of Child Okeford near Shaftesbury delivers the Dorset countryside to your door via its organic veg boxes. Much of what is in the shop and veg boxes is grown on site.
The Udder Farm Shop, Gillingham
A Taste of the West Gold winner, this farm shop run by Jane and Brian Down also incorporates a butchery, deli and café. On offer is a wide range of regional produce including beef, pork and lamb from the Down's own farm situated on the edge of the Blackmore Vale, while other meats are sourced from neighbouring farms. The deli counter has a huge array of regional cheeses, as well as homemade quiches, terrines, pates, ready meals and soups.
Vines Close Farm, Sturminster Marshall
You will also find livestock feed, pet supplies, equine feed and equipment at this farm shop which has been going for more than half a century. If you can't fit everything that you've bought into your car then they offer a free local delivery service. The on site butchers has a good range of local meats and homemade pies, and if you're feeling peckish their country kitchen serves hearty breakfasts and scrumptious cream teas.
Home Farm Shop, Tarrant Gunville
Alongside free range meat from the family farm you'll find a good range of homemade ready meals (such as pheasant in red wine), local preserves, cheeses and yummy antipasti. There are some great Dorset food and drink hampers to choose from too. Once you've shopped until you've dropped treat yourself to a Dorset cream tea in the award-winning tearoom.
Felicity's Farm Shop, Morcombelake
A worthy winner of Farm Shop of the Year in the Dorset Magazine Food, Drink and Farming Awards, this family run venture has a good range of produce fresh from the fields alongside artisan foods from across the county. Local meats include Bellair Haye Pork, a rare breed free range pork business run by Felicity's son Tom and his uncle John. Look out for Tom's award-winning sausages in the chiller cabinet. The farm shop is a popular stop off point on the Dorchester to Honiton road and their café serves breakfasts, light lunches and teas. Its outside seating area has one of the best views of Golden Cap in the county.
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