Exeter Food Festival is just around the corner, and it is easy to see that our region has become a shining beacon for food lovers over the last ten years, and us Exonians are in the middle of the party. But for those of us reliant on public transport, getting out to visit some of the best foodie destinations can be tricky.
So, here are a few choice foodie destinations that are easily accessible by bus or train. All of these destinations are on reliable major routes. If you’re in Exeter visiting the Food Festival, why not pay these lovely places a visit and say hello, even if you do have a car.
Darts Farm – http://www.dartsfarm.co.uk/- 6 miles from Exeter
Bus: Stagecoach Route 57 –
Cycle: Sustrans Exeter-Topsham cycle path.
Train: Exeter to Topsham on the Avocet Line, (20 minute walk).
There has been a farm shop on this site for a number of years. It’s heritage only goes to strengthen the fact that Dart’s Farm Shopping Village is one of the best in the country, and handily it is also accessible by bus, train and cycle path.
Home to Green Valley Cider (Taste Of The West Gold 2014), The Butchers at Dart’s Farm, The Fish Shed and a range of other lifestyle, kitchen and luxury gift retailers, the Dart Brothers have crafted a unique niche among the foodies in the South West.
This was recognised recently when the shop picked up FARMA Best Farm Shop of The Year 2015; Food Magazine also recognised the shop in the prestigious Food Magazine Reader Awards when it was voted Best Farm Shop 2015.
There is a bus stop outside of the farm with regular buses passing. The nearest train station is Topsham which is a twenty minute walk away. Passing ‘The Bridge Inn’ before crossing the bridge over the River Clyst which is a definite pub recommendation, especially needed if walking back up the hill from the river.
Quicke’s Cheese Farm Shop – https://www.quickes.co.uk/- 5 miles from ExeterBus: Stagecoach 5, 5a, 5b, 5c, 155
Train: Exeter to Newton St Cyres on the Tarka Line (24 minute walk)
Quicke’s Cheese has a long legacy for cheese-making which is just a small part of a heritage that stretches back to the 1500’s. From their own herd, they produce cheese that has won countless awards and can be found in many supermarkets and delicatessens across the UK.
At the heart of the Quickes Cheese universe is Quicke’s Farm in Newton St Cyres. This is not just home to the cows, but also to their wonderful Farm Shop. The farm shop has been listed on
The Daily Telegraph’s 50 Best Food Shops outside London. And whilst you’re visiting, why not book a tour of their cheese making facility?
Their Farm Kitchen is housed in a permanent safari tent and is available for hire for private functions and events.
Getting to Quicke’s Farm is easy enough on the bus as there is a bus stop right outside. If you’re travelling by train, it is 24 minutes by foot. Alternatively there is a farm track from Station Rd. to the Farm, but be careful as this can be muddy underfoot in wet weather.
Greendale Farm Shop – http://www.greendalefarmshop.co.uk/- 7 miles from Exeter
Bus: 52A, 52B, X53
Near Farringdon and Clyst St Mary, on the A3052 can be found Greendale Farm Shop, a very valid alternative to going to the supermarket. Open from 8am – 8pm every day apart from Sunday when they shut at 4pm, it has a resident master butcher, a fishmonger with their very own fleet of fishing boats that haul in and deliver to the shop every day. Lobster and crabs are available from saltwater tanks ensuring they are fresh from the moment customers purchase them and a vast fish counter with every sort of fish imaginable including shellfish.
Housing their own Deli and Cafe, this farm shop has grown and expanded over the last few years. Starting from a small building (I remember this one too), it has grown to encompass a vast array of goods with a specialty for locally grown seasonal produce and specialty produce that you’re unlikely to find in a standard supermarket.
The Cafe serves a particularly nice breakfast from 8am – 12pm for £6.95 and lunch from 12pm – 6pm. They use eggs produced on site by their friendly flock of hens.
Although there is car parking available, foodies relying on public transport can use the handily placed bus stops next to the road to catch the regular Sidmouth-Exeter bus service using either Stagecoach or First services. We had a closer look at Greendale Farm Shop recently!
And don’t forget…
The Real Food Store – A matter of metres away from Exeter’s Paris Street Bus Station. The Real Food Store has won numerous awards most recently Best Food Store in the Food Magazine Reader Awards 2016. It houses Emma’s Bread and the Real Food Cafe, which serves a seasonal changing menu.
Bon Gout Deli – Magdalen Road is a hidden gem for lovers of indy businesses, and one of its longest standing residents is Bon Gout Deli. With an extensive range of cheeses and meats, this deli also offers a Cheese Wedding Cake service and outside catering, using the best local ingredients on offer. Magdalen Road is a 15 minute walk away from the Exeter High Street, and about 18 minutes from the main Paris Street bus station.