This place is everything a good farm shop should be. Outside find rustic barns to fill your baskets with frothy-topped carrots and plentiful in-season veg. There’s a cyclist-friendly wee cabin for take-out drinks and bacon buttie sustenance with tables outside. Animals in the barns, the sound of moos in the air! Stop by on a Tuesday night and join a butchery class; two hours, £75 per person, which includes a hands-on butchery lesson and the joint, or sausages, you have prepared in your class to take home.
The Roots café and tearoom is in a converted barn building with flagged floor and huge windows overlooking the farm courtyard itself. Painted panel walls, wooden tables, a few sofas and nice Lloyd Loom-style chairs. There’s no escaping the sweet-toothed lure of the cake-laden cabinets.
Tasty teas, organic fruit and herb brews, Rounton coffee from just down the road – and local ales to try.
They take pride in the produce here, with lots of home-baking and support for local suppliers. Scones are mini-mountains in myriad flavours, savoury and sweet. Bacon and sausages from the on-site butchers are the mainstays of all-day breakfasts or, choose from daily specials such as quiche, or venison pate. The butcher and farm shop has an excellent selection of wines, craft beers and gins, as well as prepared dishes such as sausages and good old chicken kiev. The pork, bacon and prune sausages are legendary.
What we ate
Keeping it simple, we headed there for a spot of Sunday lunch – isn’t it always nicer when someone else cooks it for you? The Roots version comes in at a great value – £7.95 – with a choice of pork or beef. It comes plated up and is a good-sized portion, but not overwhelming. The beef was succulent and flavoursome and plentiful in portion – as was the pork. 50% of the beef is from the Roots farm itself and 90% of pork from a neighbouring farm in West Rounton – a great food miles effort. A towering Yorkshire pudding presided over the plate with a well-cooked section of vegetables, including savoy cabbage, new potatoes and carrot and swede mash. Gravy and horseradish for the finishing touches. It feels like the Sunday lunch your mum or Gran would make – perfect in every way, made with love and the best ingredients; not flashy or showy-off, just hearty, satisfying and happy food. If you like your puds, there’s always a sponge, pie or tart of the day with custard. When we visited you could plump for a traditional trifle served to the max in a retro glass dish. We decided to tackle the great scone mountain, taking home chocolate and cherry versions to enjoy with a cuppa later. Not before stocking up with sausages, meat joints and home-made burgers, though, to keep us going until next time.