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6 unmissable local delicacies to enjoy while you’re here

From sweet, juicy strawberries to punchy cave-aged Cheddar, Somerset has some delicious local delicacies and food traditions. Here are six wonderful things to try during your stay at Warren Farm.

1. Thatcher’s cider

Local delicacies - Thatchers Cider

There’s a long tradition of cider-making in Somerset. We have ideal conditions for growing apples, and orchards have been planted here for centuries. Cider production really got underway in Somerset during the 17th Century, and over the years, cider-making expertise has been passed down through families. A fine example of this is Thatcher’s Cider: William Thatcher started making cider just down the road from us on Myrtle Farm in 1904 and quickly gained a reputation for making excellent ciders. The farm is still family-run, and produces a superb range of cider, from traditional vintage cider to cloudy lemon cider, rose cider and more. The farm is well worth a visit – it has a well-stocked farm shop, offers fascinating farm tours, and you can call into the Thatcher’s pub, The Railway Inn, in the heart of Sandford village. You can find out more and book your visit here

2. Cheddar cheese

Local delicacies - Cheddar Cheese
Image E. Nekervis

Cheddar cheese is one of the most popular and widely enjoyed cheeses in the world. It originates just down the road from in the village of Cheddar, right at the foot of the beautiful Cheddar Gorge. It’s believed to have been made in the area for over 800 years, making it one of the oldest cheese varieties. Cheddar cheese is typically creamy yellow in colour and has a fairly hard texture. Flavour-wise, it ranges from mild all the way through to extra sharp mature Cheddar. Look for varieties made with unpasteurised milk for the most punch. Besides regular Cheddar, some producers make other unusual varieties. Cheddar Gorge Cheese, the only Cheddar cheese maker in Cheddar, makes a blue Cheddar containing blue veins of mould, a smoked variety, plus flavoured Cheddars with added elements such as chilli, Marmite, or herbs and garlic. Cheddar cheese is one of the most versatile cheeses you can find. It melts beautifully, making it perfect on toast and pizzas or in cheese sauces – for example, in a hearty mac and cheese. Cheddar cheese is also a great addition to a cheeseboard and pairs well with apples, pears, fruity chutneys, and wines like Cabernet Sauvignon or Chardonnay. Don’t miss a chance to visit Cheddar Gorge Cheese, where you can watch the cheese being made – and of course, try samples, including traditional cave-aged Cheddar matured in caves in the Cheddar Gorge.

3. Cheddar Ales

Local delicacies - Cheddar Ales

We love a good pint of ale, and Cheddar Ales, based at Winchester Farm on the edge of Cheddar Village, is one of the best producers you’ll find anywhere in the UK. The brewery was established in 2006 and brews around 30,000 pints a week. Head brewer and MD Jem Ham grew up in Somerset and was brewing beers for 15 years before setting up on his own. We love not only the taste of his ales but also their names, which include Gorge Best, Potholer, and Call of the Void. You can visit the on-site tap room to try the beers as close to their source as possible. Check opening times here

4. Yeo Valley yoghurt

Local delicacies - Yeo Valley Yogurts

Some of the UK’s most delicious and healthy yoghurts are produced on Yeo Valley farm, an organic family farm not far from Warren Farm. Yeo Valley has an outstanding commitment to sustainability and is continually working on initiatives to reduce food waste, cut food miles, reduce food miles and use sustainable packaging. Milk from the farm’s herd is used to make everything from cheese and butter through to cream, kefir and a full range of yoghurts including flavoured minis, Greek style yoghurt, regular organic yoghurt and a fat-free variety.  The farm offers plenty for visitors, including the chance stroll through its beautiful organic garden, and to have a coffee and bacon sandwich in the on-site canteen. Find out more here

5. Our own meat

We’re very proud of our own farm-raised meat – and buying it directly from our on-site honesty shop is a great way to keep food miles to a minimum. We raise Speckle Face and Beulah sheep, which are given plenty of freedom to graze as naturally as possible. We also sell beef from our Aberdeen Angus cross cattle – a breed chosen for its resilience and its suitability to the conservation-grade land we farm. Sustainability and natural grazing underpin our approach to farming. Our herb-rich pastures are an effective way of capturing carbon and benefit pollinators and invertebrates. They also produce flavoursome meat that’s ideal for your holiday barbeque.

6. Our own pizzas

Warren Farm Pizza and Pizza ovens

We can’t resist putting in a mention for our pizzas too! We fire up our outdoor bread oven on Saturday and Tuesday evenings so that our guests can enjoy freshly made pizzas. Simply fill in an order form and we’ll do the rest. These are proper, traditional pizzas, bursting with flavour and topped with bubbling melted mozzarella. We also cook up garlic bread as a starter – and you’ll get the chance to enjoy local Cheddar cheese, strawberries from down the road in Cheddar, and delicious chocolate brownies from Linda’s Loaf, a brilliant local bakery.