You may be surprised to discover that Lakeland is something of a gourmet’s paradise. Drawing on its history as a key location in the spice and sugar trades, Cumbria has, over the years, developed a number of local delicacies that are not to be missed. To help you on your culinary quest, we have put together a list of our favourite local produce.
Cumbrian Legendary Ales, Esthwaite
Based on Graythwaite on the shores of Esthwaite Lake, CLA produce award-winning craft-brewed beers. Their beers are all produced with care and pride using the wonderful Lake District Fell water and the best of English malts, together with quality hops from around the world and can be found in many local pubs. In recent years they have even produced a limited edition Graythwaite Hall Ale.
The Honeypot, Hawkshead
A firm favourite with locals and visitors alike, the Honeypot is your one-stop shop for sampling the delights of local food and drink producers. Owner Fiona takes great pride in sourcing and supporting small local producers, as a consequence the shop is bursting with top quality preserves, chutneys, dressings, oils, chorizo, salami, chilled and cooked meats, pies and pates, confectionery, ice cream, puddings, teas, coffees, biscuits, cakes, breads; not to mention over 40 varieties of cheese!
Cartmel Valley Game Supplies & Smokehouse
Cartmel Valley Game currently supplies only the finest quality game, ranging from pheasants, grouse, partridge, venison, rabbits and hares to their unique beech flavoured smoked salmon, smoked trout, smoked pigeon, smoked butter etc, all of which is cured and smoked on the premises. They can also supply locally picked Morecambe Bay shrimps, freshly caught Sea bass, Cumbrian crab and lobsters, all from the Irish Sea.
Hawkshead Relish Company, Hawkshead
Another Graythwaite-based producer, the Hawkshead Relish Company shop is based just around the corner from the Honeypot in the square in Hawkshead. The range of over 120 relishes, pickles and preserves are handmade in small batches using traditional open pans and locally sourced ingredients, without any artificial flavourings, colourings or preservatives, all are free from nuts and gluten and suitable for vegetarians.
Holding 50 Great Taste Awards, the Hawkshead Relish Company has become known for quality and excellence. Their Sticky Toffee Sauce is not to be missed!
Grasmere Gingerbread Shop, Grasmere
Victorian cook Sarah Nelson invented Grasmere Gingerbread in 1854. A unique, spicy-sweet cross between a biscuit and cake, its reputation quickly spread and it is now enjoyed by food lovers all over the world.
The Grasmere Gingerbread Shop also sells its own award-winning rum butter and a variety of ginger-themed foodstuffs, as well as toffee, fudges, chocolates, conserves, Cartmel Village Store Sticky Toffee Sauce, Kendal Mint Cake, conserves, ginger beer, ginger themed gifts, and much, much more.