Friday, 05 June 2020

Pub cuts food miles with farm link-up and vegetable, fruit and herb gardens

Pub cuts food miles with farm link-up and vegetable, fruit and herb gardens

THE Cherry Tree Inn aims to reduce carbon emissions in more ways than one, writes Amanda Stewart.

Landlord Dan Redfern, who took over the reins of the Stoke Row pub in March 2018, has been busy building a substantial vegetable, fruit and herb garden, aiming to become as close to self-sufficient as possible.

Gone are the out-of-season strawberries, for example, replaced by foraged and preserved fruits.

“Year two of the Cherry Tree garden means expansion and therefore improved production,” said Dan. “Hopefully a hothouse of some kind and also the completion of the final 14 beds, which will be built using only reclaimed materials, producing organic food for the pub kitchen.

“Organic, home-grown produce can be up to 80 per cent more nutritious than mass-produced, intensively farmed foods, and the flavour is incomparable of course. Also most beneficial is the reduction in food miles.” This leads us on to the Cherry Tree’s collaboration with English Farm, just up the road in Nuffield.

Estate manager Silas Hedley-Lawrence has worked hard to improve the quality of soil on this part of the Nettlebed Estate, grazing only up to around 85 longhorns at one time, which never go indoors, only eat fresh grass, and are rotated frequently, to enable the ground to stay rich and nutritious.

“Sustainable cattle farming is possible using this low-input organic method,” says Dan. “No soy-based feed, no transportation of feed, no pesticides. Better animal welfare and so on. We don’t all need to go vegan to save our environment, rather understand how our food was produced.

“We now use English Farm joints for our Sunday roasts, burgers and numerous other dishes on the menu, and we’ve ordered in some very special Cote de Boeuf sharing steaks for Valentine’s Day, which include a complimentary glass of fizz on arrival.”

Last year they sold out quickly, so this time Dan suggests pre-ordering, to avoid disappointment.

To make a booking and reserve one of these fantastic cuts of beef, call the pub on (01491) 680430, or email enquiries@thecherrytreeinn.co.uk

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