March & April 2016 food bites

Fordhall Farm

Get a pizza the action

Little ones will love being ‘a pizza baker for the day’ at Fordhall Farm near Market Drayton on 17 April. Children will explore the farm to harvest seasonal ingredients to create their own delicious pizza, which will then be baked in the outdoor clay oven and eaten. Other food-related events during March and April include Be an Organic Gardener for the Day and Hedgerow Herbs – see fordhallfarm.com for details.

Shropshire gin set to roar

After nearly three years of development and a legal battle, a new gin arrives in Shropshire next month. Local businessman JJ Lawrence is set to launch the Shropshire Gin Company’s first premium spirit, Tiger Gin. JJ explains, “The master distiller and I worked on a formula that would be smooth and sweet and would appeal to the most discerning of palates.”

However, Tiger Gin hit an obstacle early on – brewing giant Heineken decided the name was too similar to that of its own Tiger Beer and the dispute went all the way to the high court, with the result going in JJ’s favour. To find out more, see tigergin.co.uk.

Tavern moves with the times

Broseley’s Ironmaster pub looks set for a bright future thanks to new manager Richie Forrester. “I’m passionate about real ales and I’d really like to bring in a few more from around the country,” explains Richie. “I’d also love to develop team games. We’ve got bar skittles, dominoes and cribbage – though I haven’t found anyone to play me at crib yet!”

Richie is considering introducing a menu of traditional pub fare and installing play equipment in the beer garden.“I want to make everyone feel welcome, whether they come in on their own, with kids or with friends,” he says. “The key to a good pub is a great atmosphere – and that’s what I want to build up here.”

Fairtrade stands up for farmers

Fairtrade Fortnight takes place from February 29 to March 13 and Bridgnorth’s Fairtrade Steering Group is asking people to ‘sit down for breakfast and stand up for farmers.’ The group are visiting schools to raise awareness, and children are taking part in a competition to make a poster. These will be available to view at Cartway Church from 10am to noon on Saturday 12 March, with Fairtrade refreshments served. Find out more about Fairtrade at fairtrade.org.uk.

Blists Hills treats mums

With free entry for mothers on Mothering Sunday, Blists Hill is offering a Victorian-style day with lots of hands-on activities. To make the day extra special, you can pre-book mum a decadent Victorian high tea, including a glass of prosecco, sandwiches, pastries and cream-filled scones along with a pot of tea for £14.95 per person. Pre-booking essential; call 01785 252247 or email sales@jenkinsonscaterers.co.uk. Mums must be accompanied by another adult paying full price – see ironbridge.org.uk for admission prices and times.

Hats off to Hobsons

Hobsons of Cleobury Mortimer picked up three silver and a bronze award at the 2015 CAMRA awards. Hobsons dominated the Golden Ales category, claiming silver and bronze for its Town Crier and Twisted Spire ales, while its Mild picked up a silver, making a total of 19 awards since it was first brewed in 2002. Old Henry collected a silver award.

“These awards really underline Hobsons’ continued success and dedication. Their commitment to using the finest local ingredients produces ales of a high standard in flavour and freshness,” says CAMRA’s Dave Haddon.

Food Centre welcomes new boss

Ludlow Food Centre started 2016 with an exciting change in leadership: Jon Edwards (pictured) replaces Edward Berry, who has been managing director for the past four years. Jon, previously manager of the renowned Rhug Estate farm shop in Corwen, brings a wealth of experience to the centre, which encompasses a food hall, café, deli and restaurant.

Chair David Windsor-Clive says, “Jon joins the Food Centre at a very exciting time. We want to build on our achievements and continue evolving.”

Café offers meals on wheels

Mollys café – previously known as Miss Molly’s – has been taken over by a local family with a passion for customer service. Nicky and Andy Dyke and Nicky’s father Dave Farmer run the Broseley café, serving huge breakfasts, freshly baked cakes and daily-changing lunch specials to hungry patrons. They took the reins in December after the previous owners retired to go travelling.

“Dad and Andy are both from a catering background,” says Nicky, “and I’ve worked in retail, so we have a firm sense of where we’d like to go with Molly’s.”
Nicky is keen to expand their meals and wheels service into Much Wenlock and Ironbridge, explaining, “People really like it because we deliver a plate of hot food, not a tray or a box.” To find out more, call 01952 884166 or find Molly’s Café Broseley on Facebook.

 

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