Popular Farm in the Trossachs offers unique ice cream flavours from their doorstep to walkers & cyclists on brilliant biking trail…
Achray Farm, a smallholding in the heart of the Trossachs, has launched a range of ice cream produced with the milk from its herd of goats, blended with foraged ingredients and produce from their fields, which they sell direct from their doorstep to walkers and cyclists in the area.
Nicola Hornsby and Crispin Hoult have built up a small herd of goats since moving to the farm nearly four years ago. Nicola makes the ice cream in small batches using seasonal flavours. Last year she took part in Wildwonders, a training programme funded by Forth Valley and Lomond LEADER, on which she learnt about finding, identifying and using wild ingredients from some of the foremost foragers and foraging chefs in Scotland.
Flavours on sale so far include elderflower, meadowsweet, rhubarb and strawberry, fresh mint, blackcurrant and blaeberry, all of which have come from the farm itself or walking distance of it. Other ice creams include a stracciatella with fair trade dark chocolate and Achray Original, made using organic honey. The ice cream is sold in tubs to serve individuals at a cost of £3; larger tubs are available for those who bring a freezer bag. The development of the ice cream kitchen at Achray Farm has been part-funded by LEADER, as has an electric trike for selling ice cream locally.
Nicola Hornsby said: “We’ve been delighted with the response to the ice creams we’ve produced so far. We’ve developed Achray with sustainability at its heart so producing ice cream with our own goats’ milk and fruit and selling it to those who’ve walked or cycled here, is a real thrill! It’s lovely to be able to reward those who’ve made use of the walking routes and cycle paths through this beautiful part of the world with something really delicious. It’s also a joy to start to use the knowledge and skills I gained on the Wildwonders foraging course last year by introducing visitors to the wild and seasonal gifts that grow on our doorstep. There will be many more wild and seasonal flavours to come!”
Nicola and Crispin are committed to reducing food miles and carbon emissions so encourage visitors to the farm to visit on foot or by bike.
Achray Farm sits on the Great Trossachs Path with easy access from the Byre Inn or the Three Lochs Forest Drive. The NCN7 Lochs and Glen Way links many of the villages and routes in the area and goes almost past the door of the farm. A series of new e-bike routes have been launched this summer, passing close to Achray Farm with e-bike hire available at various points and fast chargers along the way. Details of the e-bike routes can be found at www.fvl.org.uk/cycle-tourism/e-biking/.
Visitors to Achray Farm can also rent the Old Farmhouse, which sleeps six, as well as the newly renovated Bothy, which sleeps 4. The local pub, the Byre Inn, is a short walk from the farm.
For more information on Achray Farm, visit www.achrayfarm.co.uk