We spent a great morning down on the farm recently meeting our suppliers at Radford Mill here in Somerset.
It was wonderful to see all the organic veg growing with such abundance under the care of farm manager Richard Fox and his army of helpers.
We were there on a sunny day, too, so the butterflies were flitting happily through the warm polytunnels and the fields were alive with the sounds of nature in summer.
The beautiful 112-acre farm in Timsbury has been going for 40 years. It’s always been organic. The Cam Brook runs through it as does the Somerset Coal Canal.
Since 2011 they’ve been pressing apple juice on site in their new hand-built and hand-operated wooden press. And we love their willow withy beds – home to over 3000 willow trees of nine different varieties. They’re used for bio-fuel, hedging and fedging (a cross between a fence and a hedge), purifying water and for weaving.
But of particular interest to us at Excalibur Café is the market garden that covers about five acres, the orchard and the soft fruit field. It means Radford Mill can provide us with a wide variety of vegetables, fruit and salad, all certified organic. We reckon their produce can go from field to fork in our café in just three hours. Now that’s fresh!