A Cool Taste Of Purbeck
On a glorious sunny day I arrive at the Purbeck Ice Cream farm, I could not have asked for a better day to be here! The views of Corfe Castle in the distance are breath-taking to say the least. I am greeted by Hazel & Pete who are sat outside with the farm dogs (George, Boof, Rusty & Muddy). When we go in to the office it is clear to see they are very busy, yet work in a laid back and friendly environment, which is refreshing to see. The dogs are all very well behaved, one of them has even recently taken the starring role in a commercial for Purbeck Ice Cream, Hazel informs me the stardom has defiantly gone to his head!
I sit down with Hazel and it is apparent right from the beginning that this is something she is incredibly passionate about, she tells me the story behind the well-known brand. I am saddened by the harsh reality of the times they faced in 1988 with 3 young boys and the introduction of the milk quota. Very quickly they had to make a decision for the future, and thank goodness they choose this path. The impressive story that has unfolded and what I see before me today is clearly down to years and years of hard work and a strong ethic and self-belief. The brand is super strong and the allergy credentials and values of the team behind it, have made it a product that can in fact be enjoyed by everyone. Even down to the sorbets on offer for those that are dairy intolerant. It’s no real surprise that the team have scooped many awards for flavour, quality, innovation and above all taste.
Where possible everything is sourced locally and all within the UK, even the packaging! Something so rarely seen in today’s world. Hazel and Pete have successfully built upon this brand making it a well-recognised name both locally and further afield. The bold black and gold packaging with Corfe Castle silhouette, oozes sophistication and class, I can safely say the contents are equally as impressive! Although Hazel & Pete no longer produce the milk here themselves, it is sourced from the farmer just up the road from them, making this product an authentic taste of the Purbeck Isle.
Cruise liners, Air lines, London restaurants and top chefs are endorsing and even using the ice cream in dishes other than dessert. Experimenting with spices and flavours has led them to stand out from the vanilla crowd. Purbeck Ice Cream attends a plethora of trade events and have just recently launched the Earl of Whip van where you can get yourself an “88” ice cream in honour of the year they were established. I was a little disappointed yet not surprised to hear from Hazel that the most popular brand is still Vanilla or “plain”, with so many alternatives on offer, which I know from experience taste incredible, we as a society need to get more adventurous!
After listening to the background story, exciting prospect of future contracts and the newly released advertisement featuring the voice of Edward Fox (See here) it was time for my guided tour of the factory. I was surprised by exactly how much goes into this process and the futuristic environment tucked away in this quiet corner of Purbeck. Despite the impressive machinery on display it was nice to see that the large tubs were being filled by hand, before going into the massive freezer which was colder than I ever imagined!!
Hazel very kindly sent me home with 2 tubs of salted caramel (my favourite), on a day as hot as this I can’t wait to get back to the office to enjoy! Where ever you are in the UK or indeed abroad, come rain or shine take time to experiment and enjoy a little bit of Purbeck ice cream heaven. Whether you’re a Vanilla Bean, Clotted Cream, Posh Toffee or even Banoffee they really do have it all! If you’re unsure where you can find Purbeck Ice Cream the new app will point you in the right direction! Perfect for those sudden sweet tooth cravings!