EXETER COOKERY SCHOOL'S GUIDE TO LOCAL FOOD PRODUCERS
As we firmly believe that the secret to creating fabulous dishes starts with choosing top quality ingredients, we thought would like to share with you some of our favourite food producers and local food heroes from around the South West.
Before opening the doors to Exeter Cookery School in 2016, Jim and Lucy Fisher went in search of some of the area’s finest producers. It didn’t take them long to discover the many benefits of working with Pipers Farm, a 50-acre, all grass family farm located just north of Exeter in Devon.
Pipers Farm has at least one herd of native Red Ruby Cattle grazing the farm year round. You'll also find a flock of their Suffolk tup sheep grazing deep-rooted permanent grasses. In the Summer months through to late Autumn, Pipers Farm’s ancient orchards become the perfect home for their Saddleback pigs, munching windfall apples, rooting up turnips and wallowing in deep mud baths.
First founded by Peter and Henri Grieg, the Pipers Farm team passionately believe in the “common sense” of traditional, sustainable values which have been handed down through generations of family farms. Today the Pipers Farm family embraces 25 family farms, all helping to produce healthy food that tastes fantastic.
At Exeter Cookery School, we recognise the quality and provenance of Pipers Farm meat. We teach our students how to cook Pipers Farm duck breasts for our French Bistro Mains Cookery Course, pork chops on our Back to Basics Course, and Pipers Farm chicken breast and racks of lamb on our Meat Cookery Course. We are also very fortunate to have Peter Grieg passing on his vast knowledge of butchery techniques on our Pipers Farm Butchery & Meat Cookery Course.
Trading since 1987, Fishes provides the very best in quality and service. Exeter's longest-serving independent fishmongers and seafood wholesaler, the business has built a reputation on offering the widest choice of the freshest fish (to both the public and trade) that can be found anywhere in the region.
Its fleet of vans are out on the roads daily delivering to local restaurants and hotels.
In the knowledge that many people are daunted by fresh fish, the friendly team at Fishes are on hand to offer advice on the best way to prepare and cook this wonderfully versatile and healthy food. They'll suggest recipes and, of course, prepare your fish for you. Most of the fish is landed at Looe on the south coast of Cornwall.
The Looe fleet is made up of 'day boats' - these boats go to sea daily, up to 30 miles out. They spend shorter times at sea, resulting in fresher fish from sustainable sources.
You, too, can enjoy the very freshest fish and seafood on one of Exeter Cookery School's many popular fish and seafood courses.
For more information, visit www.fishesexeter.co.uk
Other local producers / suppliers we regularly use
Dart Fresh Produce has been a family run business since 1957, supplying produce to the wholesale, multiple, retail and catering trades. The company's product range includes fruit & vegetables, dairy, charcuterie, dry goods and a range of frozen items.
With sustainability high on the list of priorities at Exeter Cookery School, we were delighted to find a supplier that completely understood, and could deliver, our every need, from sustainable packaging to eco-friendly hand soap and sanitiser.
Founded by the dynamic Janet Sawyer (BEM), Little Pod provides high-quality vanilla, coffee and chocolate extracts, and specialises in a real Madagascan vanilla paste that is a firm favourite at Exeter Cookery School, especially when teaching our puddings and dessert cookery courses.
Since 1087 the Luscombe estate has been a hive of farming activity with the farm making an appearance in the Dooms Day Book. Luscombe drinks have continued the estates story, crafting and perfecting their drinks on the farm since 1975.
Established by Ian and April Marks in 2001, Regency Wines is a family-owned regional wine merchant dedicated to sourcing and supplying wines and spirits to the licensed trade. We are proud to be working with Regency to supply our customers with a higher quality wine, and on certain occasions, wines perfectly matched to dishes and canapés with the help of their excellent sommellier.
PROUD MEMBERS OF FOOD DRINK DEVON
Food Drink Devon represents a membership of like-minded businesses dedicated to providing good quality local food and drink.
Devon is made up of a patchwork of small fields, hedge banks, orchards, pastures and sheltered river valleys and has been producing food and drink for centuries. Buying local food and drink helps sustain that special link between landscape and its harvest. It helps support the stewardship of the countryside – the cycle of maintaining hedges, restoring orchards and providing a haven for wildlife as well as cutting down on emissions by reducing the carbon footprint.
Food Drink Devon's artisan producers boast a range of delicious food and drink from both land and sea which, with their individual microclimates, enhance the unique natural flavour. At Exeter Cookery School, we are proud to serve and cook with this delightful produce.
PROUD MEMBERS OF TASTE OF THE WEST
Taste of the West are the largest independent regional food group in the UK, and are here to promote and support fantastic local food and drink from this region that encompasses Devon, Cornwall, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Somerset and Wiltshire.
The organisation's aim is to champion food and drink producers in the West Country, as well as all the places that serve and sell them, to prove that when it comes to what you eat and drink, it really is best in the South West.
Taste of the West also runs an annual awards scheme to ensure that high standards are maintained, which Exeter Cookery School has been delighted to host in the final Champion of Champion judging - so look out for the shiny round award logos you see on quality West Country products, and the awards that are proudly displayed where you eat and shop for local food and drink.
The organisation has been going since 1991, and its ethos today remains the same as it's always been - quality, integrity and provenance.
For more information, visit www.tasteofthewest.co.uk