Whey has historically been the problem child of the dairy industry. There is an excess produced in the cheese making process. We take this under-valued by-product and turn it into a superior premium vodka. We take great pride in our economical use of nature's bounty. Black Cow is the perfect partner for pairing with food. The mineral-free nature of our vodka gives it an incredible softness that holds delicate flavours beautifully.
The charismatic inventor of Pure Milk Vodka and face of the brand. As a farmer, running his own dairy farm, Jason has utilised all of his skills and contacts to set up, maintain and run the production side of Black Cow. His family background in farming and cheese making are, of course, reflected in the Black Cow process. The world’s oldest surviving family of cheddar makers, the Barber family have been making cheese and producing milk for over 200 years.
Furleigh Estate is 85 acres of vineyard, lakes and grazing land surrounded by woodland. The area is teaming with wildlife; buzzards fly overhead; deer, pheasants and partridge roam the vineyard, while heron fish regularly from the lakes to which our resident geese return each Spring.
Four years of careful planning and investment has transformed the former dairy farm into a modern and productive vineyard and winery. Over 22,000 vines grow on the south facing slopes of the Estate. 15,000 of these are Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meurnier used to produce our classic quality sparkling wines. Bacchus and Rondo are also grown to produce fine still wines. A 5,000 square foot winery was built in 2007. This now accommodates a specialist pneumatic press, designed to carry out the very gentle whole bunch pressing required for quality sparkling wines. A temperature controlled cellar provides the ideal conditions to store still wines and mature sparkling wines on their lees, so as to develop the best flavours and mousse possible.
Newton House Gin is a small batch hand crafted gin which is distilled, bottled and labelled at Newton House, a beautiful historic Jacobean manor, in South Somerset. It is the brain child of Robin and Jane Cannon and excitingly, even though it is still in its first year of production, it has been awarded a Gold Medal in the prestigious 2018 World Gin Awards in the category for London Dry Gin. Robin and Jane purchased Newton House and 60 acres of gardens and grounds in 2007. It was in a very sorry state of decay and during the ten year restoration project every square inch of the house and outbuildings and every square yard of the grounds have been lovingly restored. The walled gardens now grow a large variety of flowers for cutting, herbaceous borders to enjoy and many botanicals including exciting and colourful edible flowers for cocktails!
In a moment of inspiration Robin and Jane decided to use their unique spring water which is pure and the elixir of life, having seeped gently from the hills surrounding the house for centuries, together with some of their homegrown botanicals to create a small batch, handcrafted gin. The gin was originally created in Hermione, a 10 litre copper still which is still used to develop delicious libations. After much trialing, the unique recipe was finally agreed and Newton House Gin was born.
In 1794, Dorset rope and net makers – the Gundry family – built the Old Brewery on the banks of the River Brit in Bridport. Since then, there’s been non-stop brewing on this site. Generations of Palmers have kept the brews bubbling. In the late 19th century, two Palmers brothers – John Cleeves and Robert Henry – bought the brewery and gave it their names: JC & RH Palmer. Today, their great grandsons, John and Cleeves Palmer, work in the company. As Palmers Brewery, it remains among the best of small independent brewers.
Palmers welcome visitors to the Brewery from Easter to the end of October. The fascinating guided tour starts at 11.00 am on every weekday (excluding Bank Holidays) and lasts for about two hours. These specialist tours are very popular and they advise you to pre-book. You’ll go behind the scenes in the historic brewery buildings, to watch every stage of the centuries-old brewing process.
Our farm in Somerset sits among 180 acres of cider apple orchards at the base of Burrow Hill. The farm has been pressing cider for over 200 years. In 1989 we were granted the UK’s first ever full cider-distilling license. We have been distilling award winning cider into Somerset Cider Brandy ever since.
In the autumn over forty varieties of vintage cider apples such as Dabinett, Kingston Black, Stoke Red, Yarlington Mill and Harry Masters are harvested. By the spring our pure juice traditional cider is ready to drink. To the best of our knowledge Burrow Hill Cider is the only cider to have won the annual national cider championships in Devon, Somerset and Hereford in the same year. As well as traditional farmhouse cider we make bottle-fermented ciders, a perry and an ice cider. Burrow Hill is also the home of Somerset Cider Brandy.
For the past thirty years we have been reviving the ancient art of Somerset Cider Brandy production. Half of our cider is set aside for distilling in Josephine and Fifi, our copper stills. The resulting clear spirit, known as Eau de Vie or ‘water of life’ is trickled into small oak casks to mature into brandy. It takes seven tons of apples to fill just one 500 litre barrel. We bottle Somerset Cider Brandy at 3, 5, 10, 15 and 20 years. Each bottle can be traced back to its source orchard.
Abbot’s Hill Farm nestles in the heart of the West Dorset countryside, but it is more than a simple farmhouse with a beautiful view. It is home to Lesley Waters' family and cookery school. Abbot’s Hill is about fresh, simple ingredients and creating great food. It’s not just about the cooking though. It’s the whole day; meeting people and enjoying the atmosphere where you can relax learn and laugh. We will be happy to make arrangements for classes and transportation to any of our guests wishing to attend.
Dorset Cereals make unadulterated breakfast cereals that are honest, tasty and real. They believe life’s too short to settle for second best and using the best possible ingredients, create delicious muesli, porridges, granolas and cereal bars from their base just a few miles away in Poundbury, Dorset. We’re pleased and proud to serve their fantastic products to our guests at Summer Lodge.
Summer Lodge works closely with Harvey’s Literary Tours to explore the relationships between the region’s authors and the landscapes that inspired them and how each brings depth, perspective and meaning to the other. With walks and talks conducted by acclaimed locally based authors, they bring literature and landscapes to life within a context of literary appreciation and a passion for the land.
Described as one of the most beautiful and unique sculpture parks in the United Kingdom, Sculpture by the Lakes marries the soft beauty of nature’s wild river landscape with the more formal presentation of monumental outdoor sculpture. A fantastic place to visit during your stay at Summer Lodge. Pre-booking is required, call us on +44 (0) 1935 48 2000 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Just 30 minutes from Summer Lodge in Sparkford is the Haynes Motor Museum which houses the UK's largest exhibition of the greatest cars from around the world. There are 10 huge display halls with over 400 amazing models charting the evolution of the car, and bike, from the dawn of motoring to the present day. There are the style classics of the 50's and 60's, glorious Bentleys and Rolls Royces, exciting super cars like the Jaguar XJ220 and the not-to-be-missed Red Room.
Just a short drive from Summer Lodge in Dorset is River Cottage, made famous on British TV for the Presenter's ethically sound approach to sourcing and preparing seasonal produce. Visitors can now also learn some of the basic techniques themselves. Whether its catching, filleting and cooking some of Dorset's variety of fish or curing and smoking meats with lessons in basic butchery; you will leave with a new approach to food.
If you want to charter a luxury skippered yacht on the South Coast between the Solent and Weymouth then look no further. Summer Lodge has teamed up with Carey Yachts, a leading charter firm in the area to allow you the freedom to plan your own skippered charter from start to finish! Whether for private parties or corporate charters, we'll organise the lot. Their luxurious yacht 'Misfa' is a 2004 built Ocean Yachts 56.1, with skipper and crew, can accommodate up to 12 guest for an exciting day on the ocean waves.
In keeping with our green and sustainable credentials we’ve teamed up with Guy Mallinson’s wonderful Woodland Workshops at Holditch, about 15 miles West of Evershot. Their green woodworking courses are suitable for everyone: novices and experienced woodworkers; interested amateurs or anyone just keen to try out something new. Projects range from carving a bowl or spoon to making a chair from a tree. Their location is idyllic, in woodland that's cool and shady in summer, warm and cosy in spring and autumn. They’ve even provided one of the locations for the BBC’s ‘Mastercrafts’ series. They provide all the materials needed, locally sourced as much as possible. For the more experienced woodworker, there's also the option to hire a fully equipped 'bodger's shelter'.
The tank was a British invention that changed warfare for ever when it was introduced in World War One – and Bovington, just a 40-minute drive from Summer Lodge, has been the home of the tank ever since. From the Somme to Tiananmen Square or D-Day to Desert Storm the tank has played a part in shaping history – and it continues to do so today. The Tank Museum is the only place where many of these rare and historic vehicles can be seen. Fresh from a £16m investment in new exhibitions & facilities, with almost 200 vehicles on display in 6 large halls, you will come face-to-face with tanks that have seen action in all the major wars of the 20th century. The Tank Museum, Bovington, Dorset.
William Holland baths and basins are handcrafted from copper and brass with each individual piece taking their skilled craftsmen up to 120 hours to create. One of their many amazing features is that they retain the heat which is perfect in a cold climate. Depending your personal preference, William Holland baths can be finished in a numerous ways including tin, nickel, patina and even gold or silver. William Holland is housed in a stunning 17th Century thatched Tithe barn in Dorset, UK. The barn has an amazing showroom, displaying all the possible finishes. Try a William Holland bath at Summer Lodge before buying your own.