A visit to Rodwell Farm Dairy – makers of Shipcord

Why is Extra Mature Shipcord so well liked by visitors to Slate?  It is a delicious cheddar-style cheese with robust flavours and a long tangy tail to its taste but perhaps most significantly it is one of our very local East Anglian cheeses, rarely tasted outside the region. 

With this in mind, Clare and John set off to meet Susan Richards and her husband Robin who run Rodwell Farm just a few miles outside Ipswich. 

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Catch up with Eastgate Larder

Jane Steward is passionate about medlars and spreading word of this forgotten fruit, once common in English gardens.  In 2016 she established Eastgate Larder making medlar jelly and fruit cheese using Norfolk grown medlars, including fruit from her own smallholding.  Recently Clare caught up with Jane to find out whether this year is looking good for her orchard and what new recipes she has been stirring up on her kitchen Aga.  

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Hands-on with Ferndale Cheeses

Clare and John are always thrilled by the opportunity to get hands-on making cheese.  Togged up in white coats and blue hairnets, there were cheeses to be turned and curds to be "cheddared" as they made a recent visit to Ferndale Cheeses.  

Ferndale Cheeses is the family-run producer of local East Anglian cheeses Norfolk Dapple and Norfolk Tawny.  Their range also includes some variations: Smoked Dapple, Carrow Dapple (with added mustard seeds) and a seasonal special, port-infused Ruby Dapple. 

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A buzz with Bracey Bees

Fresh goats cheese with a drizzle of honey is one of our favourite pairings here at Slate, particularly when it is our local honey from Bracey Bees. Recently we gave Simon a buzz to find out more about this busy time of year for beekeepers and to discover whether Suffolk is a bee-friendly place.    

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A visit to the new maturing rooms at Neal’s Yard Dairy

Neal’s Yard Dairy is a prominent name in the world of cheese.  With three shops in London and a thriving wholesale and global export business, their work is linked by a common vision:  developing, curating, and delivering outstanding cheeses in excellent condition.

Clare and John have both made recent visits to the heart of Neal’s Yard Dairy:  their new HQ and maturing rooms, tucked away in former railway arches in Bermondsey, south London. 

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A Stilton Masterclass

Stilton is a truly a British cheese, and protected by both its EU "Protected Designation of Origin" (PDO) status and registered trademark, this is the way it will stay.  Clare and John attended a "Stilton Masterclass" to learn the essentials. 

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Suffolk Gold-en Sunshine

Happy cows are at the heart of life on Whitegate Farm, the home of Katherine and Jason Salisbury and their Suffolk Farmhouse Cheeses.  On a beautiful sunny day, Clare arrived to visit just as their herd of fifty milking cows bounded out into the fields for the first time since October, immediately getting their heads down to enjoy the fresh spring grass.

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Meet the Queen ... of Pork Pies!

Sarah Pettegree of Bray's Cottage is the "Queen of Pork Pies"!  Her "perfect pies" are a firm favourite in the Slate picnic counter, particularly delicious when munched on the beach.  Recently we caught up with Sarah to find out how she got into the pork pie business and her top tip for a pork pie accompaniment.

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