Despite winter closing in, wild foods can still be found growing throughout our beautiful countryside. Edible field mushrooms are ripe for the picking and natural festive fare is at its best, with sweet chestnuts and sloes in fruitful abundance. We’ve shortlisted our favourite foraging breaks to get first-time food gatherers started; spend a weekend exploring forests, fields and shores with expert guides, enjoying fresh seasonal dinners, and experiencing all that nature’s bountiful larder has to offer.
Fat Hen, Cornwall
This wild cookery school in Penzance offers all sorts of exciting courses, from ‘forage, cook and feast days’ to lessons in seaweed foraging. Couples and families will love staying in its rustic cottage, The Old Wash House, and big groups can also be catered for, with comfortable on-site bell tents, as well as exclusive use of the cookery school and home cinema. For more information, call 01736 810156.
Tudor Farmhouse, Gloucestershire
With the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley right on its doorstep, this farmhouse hotel is in the perfect position to offer plentiful foraging trips with expert Raoul Van Den Broucke. The crop depends on the season, but can range from wild garlic and mushrooms to wimberries and edible flowers. Head chef Martin Adams will whip up a three-course lunch using your foraged finds, before you head back to your cosy room situated in either the Cider House, Farm House or Barn. For more information, call 01594 833046.
Penrhiw Hotel, Pembrokeshire
Enjoy a night in a luxury room, followed by a locally sourced breakfast before joining local expert Julia Horton-Powdrill on a foraging day. You’ll be taken along the seashore and hedgerows in search of edible morsels, before heading back to this country hotel for a delicious dinner made from your foraged ingredients. For more information, call 01437 729900.
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