If you’re planning a self-catering stay in Scotland this year what could be better than recommendations from locals? As it’s The Year of Food and Drink in Scotland, we asked EmbraceScotland holiday home owners which farm shops they suggest to their guests. Here are 16 farm shops across Scotland that are loved by locals; sample some of the best of Scotland’s fantastic natural larder and pick up local, fresh produce, such as home bred beef, seasonal fruit and home grown vegetables, during your holiday.
Aberdeenshire and Moray
You can order online from The Store in Foveran, run by the Booth family, but a visit to them is a delight in itself. There is an onsite café/restaurant serving good, local food and they have their own butchery so they can produce any cut of meat you want given notice. They produce Aberdeen Angus beef and home bred lamb, and supply local eggs and vegetables – including dirty carrots (they taste better)! ~ Debra Storr, Varis Holiday House
Woodside Farm Shop, Café and Play Area on the outskirts of Kinloss is a delight. They sell their home grown vegetables, home bred Aberdeen Angus beef, free range eggs and other Scottish produce. The café adjoins a spacious play barn, with quality equipment for children up to about 10 years old. ~ Ruth Wylie, Curlew Cottage
Highlands and Skye
For a bit of variety, why not try a fish farm shop? I love The Oyster Shed on the Isle of Skye which sells local farmed oysters, fresh crab, lobster, langoustines, mussels, smoked fish, venison, game, pates, cheese and much more. They do a hot food seafood takeway in summer – where else can you get scallop platter or a seafood platter to take-away? Paul, the owner is a delight. ~ Debra Storr, Varis Holiday House
Lochaber Farm Shop on the way up to the Nevis Range mountain gondola stocks a really good range of local produce, fresh and frozen meats, as well as organic wholefoods, gluten free foods, Fair Trade goods and environmentally friendly cleaning products. They also have a range of craft goods from local craftsmen along with other gifts and jewellery. There’s always a friendly welcome in the shop and café too – and the food is great. ~ Bunroy Park
We recommend Tomich Farm Shop, just outside Beauly northwards on the A862. It consists of The Larder, selling a variety of produce including free-range eggs, local venison, home baking, cheeses, and also strawberries in season. There is also a Children’s Farm, with lots of cuddly animals, including an adorable alpaca. ~ Nick Morgan, Kiltarlity Lodges
Pillars of Hercules at Falkland and Muddy Boots at Balmalcolm are fantastic farm shops and both have excellent cafés as well. There are wonderful woodland walks from Pillars and a great children’s playground at Muddy Boots. ~ Sarah Scarlett, Baincraig Lodge
Ardross Farm Shop just outside Elie in the East Neuk of Fife is a fabulous business, and was awarded Farm Shop & Deli of the Year in 2014. Balgove Larder in St Andrews is another lovely farm shop, with a home reared butchery and café. ~ Debbie Maccallum, Fife Cottages and Maggie Picken, St Andrews Coach Houses
Edinburgh and the Lothians
Two really good farm shops that are loved by locals and guests staying at Crosswoodhill near Edinburgh are Whitmuir The Organic Place, one of the best organic shops in the UK, and Hopetoun Farm Shop, offering a huge range of locally produced fine fare. Both of these farm shops will ensure you eat the finest food Scotland offers. ~ Geraldine Hamilton, Crosswoodhill Farm Holiday Cottages
Carol Haughton of Airhouses Luxury Lodges, adds: ‘Whitmuir deliver on a Friday which is useful for guests who can buy on line beforehand’.
Gosford Bothy Farm Shop & Café on the Gosford Estate, is located on the left-hand side before entering the village of Aberlady, in East Lothian. The shop sells wild boar, beef, eggs, organic vegetables all reared/grown on the estate, and is a lovely stop-off spot before driving along the East Lothian coastline or doing a bit of shopping in Gullane or North Berwick. It is also where you can buy a ticket to access to the beautiful Gosford House gardens via the woods. ~ Debbie Martin, Pilrig House Apartments
Two great farm shops which are all busy, absolutely loved by locals and doing business with considerable flair are Loch Leven’s Larder and Gloagburn Farm Shop. Loch Leven’s Larder is run by the Niven family near Kinross, overlooking Loch Leven (there is also a satellite shop attached to McEwens in Perth). Gloagfarm is located just west of Perth, is a really popular place for our visitors to Cloag Farm and always buzzing. ~ David Smythe, Cloag Farm Cottages
I’d recommend Hardiesmill, where the Tuke family produce supreme Aberdeen Angus beef with a difference. They have been nominated as one of the Top 5 Beef Producers in the World! Visitors can buy online and visit the butchery which is just north of Kelso, in the Borders. ~ Sue Beck, Hendersyde Farm Cottages
Dumfries and Galloway
We recommend the award winning 5 star Loch Arthur Farm Shop and Café between Dalbeattie and Dumfries, one of our favourites in Dumfries and Galloway. ~ Robert and Melinda Kennedy, Orroland Holiday Cottages
If you have a favourite farm shop in Scotland, leave a comment below!