An award-winning Farm Shop and Smokehouse in Nidderdale are celebrating 2 successful years in business.
Paul and Gabby Palmer came across the farm shop by chance in the summer of 2019 whilst searching for premises to expand Gabby’s candle making business in the Yorkshire Dales.
With a strong food industry background and family connections to both The Old Deanery restaurant in Ripon and Bleikers Smokehouse, the couple decided to take on the running of the farm shop, located in the village of Blubberhouses in the following October and set about growing it into the award-winning business it is today.
Originally founded in 1999, Mackenzies made a name for itself as the place to go for delicious locally sourced food and a great day out in the area.
Gabby, who grew up locally and shares her Swiss chef father’s love for food coupled with Paul’s longstanding career in the food and drink industry, made the perfect recipe for taking on the business and the team have since focussed on selling and serving high quality, locally sourced food and ringing in an exciting new era.
Gabby said: “We can hardly believe that this October marked the two-year anniversary since we took over at Mackenzies. After launching straight into Christmas 2019, we started 2020 with ambition and a plan to grow and improve the café, followed by some work expanding the shop and developing our smokehouse products. Then COVID came along and changed everything!
“In 2021 we redeveloped and expanded the shop footprint and range. The beginning of the year provided some challenged with the café struggling to get going with the stop-start opening/closing of hospitality and similarly, while more retailers were stocking our smoked products, the opportunities to supply local restaurants and caterers shrank.”
Since Covid restrictions lifted however, the Mackenzies team were able to get back on track, and whilst the shop and café will stay on the current site, the Smokehouse, which recently took home the awards for Best Fish and Seafood and Best Prepared Meat products at this year’s Deliciouslyorkshire Taste Awards, will be moved into a new purpose-built site just a couple of miles down the road to cope with the huge increase in demand from retailers and restaurants.
The new premises will give the team the opportunity to showcase the existing smokehouse to their shop and café customers with plans to add a window into the original smoking kilns so visitors can see the products smoking from the shop as well as offering tours and tasting events, as well as hand carved smoked salmon, bacon and other products served in the shop straight from the kilns. In addition, there’ll also be the opportunity for customers to bring their own products in to be smoked.
Gabby continues: “In the café we’ll be offering an even bigger and better menu and our chefs have worked wonders in their tiny little kitchen so we’re now going to expand the area to give them improved facilities and enable them to service our customers more efficiently. We’ve also got plans to develop our ‘chef’s own’ range of sourdough pizzas and fresh ready meals from lasagne and fish pie to beef stew which will be available to buy and takeaway.”
For more information on Mackenzies Farm Shop and Smokehouse visit their website www.mackenziesyorkshirefarmshop.co.uk