Very little snow this year perhaps but, for the first time in several years, a proper winter with repeated cold, hard frosts. Although this has slowed down growth of our outside crops such as Calcots and Garlic, they will have benefited from the vernalisation – the cold ensures that the alliums will split to form separate cloves and the signs are that we will have an exceptional crop in a a few months – in particular, the Elephant Garlic is looking strong and healthy.
The stunning Hoar Frost or should that be Soft Rime Ice (pictured above) at the farm last week may not return immediately, but its effects can still be felt. The same freeze/thaw process that we hope is having a dramatic effect on slugs and other pests has had a devastating effect on the embankments around the Yarnton railway bridge!
Landslips last Friday and then again on Sunday brought rail and road traffic to a halt. Although Network Rail and the Highways Agency are fully engaged, repairs may well extend beyond this weekend. Those approaching the farm from the A40/Cassington or from the Bladon/Long Hanborough directions will be able to get to Worton – the effective roadblock is just beyond the entrance to Worton Park. Access from Yarnton is likely to remain closed until next week at the earliest – if approaching from Oxford, your best option is to take the A40 towards Eynsham and turn right at the Cassington lights.
As some of you know, our mincer broke last week and sausage production was interrupted. For those who didn’t manage to get any sausages, the mincer is repaired and we made more today – these will be available on-line, in the shop and in the restaurant while stocks last. Making full use of our Saddlebacks, we will also have Rillettes and Sticky Pork Ribs available in the restaurant and another 24 hour Roast Shoulder on Sunday.
On the seafood side, we will, again, have fresh Pollack, Lemon Sole and some Monkfish which we will be serving with Prosciutto and Beluga lentils.
Our full menu for the week is set out below- we look forward to greeting you in the shop or in the restaurant.