Buy online and keep supporting local business (2)

Introduction

Introduction

This is a perfect time to support the many independent shops, producers, artists and makers that are such a great feature of the Lake District and the rest of Cumbria. Non-essential shops and many other businesses are, of course, closed but plenty are selling online. Check out the places below and you’ll find everything from fashion, food and drink to books, art, homeware, and bath and beauty products. Buying local and supporting local is one of the best things you can do for the Lake District and Cumbria at this time. More places are listed on another feature on the home page. Square picture on home page: Laura’s Loom. Pic here: Pure Lakes.

Pickles, sauces, chutneys. Mr Vikki’s

Pickles, sauces, chutneys. Mr Vikki’s

Adam Marks was determined to set the foodie world alight when he started Mr Vikki’s in 2005 and judging by the Great Taste Awards which have come his way, he’s done just that. Last year, for instance, the self-confessed ‘chilli-head’ received two stars each for his Old Delhi Chutney and HHH Madras along with one star each for five other products, Tomato and Nigella Chutney and Banana Habanero amongst them. Lee’s Hot Wing Sauce is the latest in a long line of pickles, sauces, jams, mustards and chutneys that Adam has created. Use the checkout code ‘Happychilli’ to get a 10% discount on online purchases. www.mrvikkis.co.uk

Butchers and more. Cranstons Cumbrian Food Hall, Penrith

Butchers and more. Cranstons Cumbrian Food Hall, Penrith

Although the food hall is open (like Cranstons five other stores), you can also order online for nationwide delivery or use the contactless car park collection service here. The same applies at Cranstons food halls at Orton Grange near Carlisle and Brampton. The Penrith store sells an extensive range of quality food and drink, with produce from more than 50 Cumbrian producers, and a very big meat, cheese and deli counter. The family firm received a special award at the 2019 Cumbria Life Food and Drink Awards for its Outstanding Contribution to Cumbria Food and Drink. Pic: courtesy of Cranstons. www.cranstons.net  

Cakes and traybakes. Ginger Bakers

Cakes and traybakes. Ginger Bakers

If you love the tasty treat of a traybake, then Ginger Bakers have got just the thing for you. Recipient of 15 Great Taste Awards and a finalist at the Great British Food Awards 2020, Lisa Smith’s business offers a regular, gluten free or vegan Mixed Tray Bake Box. The regular one includes a Chocolate Damson Brownie, a Carrot and Ginger Cake Bake, a Pecan Caramel Shortbread and a Raspberry and Almond Blondie. Go to the website (below) and then click on ‘Products’ to see the choice, not only of traybakes but of all its other fruit cakes, tarts and loaf cakes. The shop is at Plumgarths just outside Kendal. www.gingerbakers.co.uk

Preserves, cordials, liqueurs. Lakeland Artisan

Preserves, cordials, liqueurs. Lakeland Artisan

Over the years a total of 65 Great Taste Awards have come the way of Geoff Monkman’s business for his jams, marmalades, pickles, mustards, drinks and sauces. What began as Friendly Food and Drink in 2006 became Lakeland Artisan in 2018, the business now embracing Cumbrian Delights, Mawson’s Original Drinks, Lakeland Hampers and Lakeland Liqueurs. Six products received two stars each at 2020’s Great Taste Awards including Lakeland Spiced Fruit Rum Liqueur and Sticky Toffee Sauce. There’s free postage on orders worth over £30 and currently a 10% discount on orders over £50. www.lakelandartisan.co.uk

Books. Westwood Books

Books. Westwood Books

Independent bookshops are having their moment which is great news for the likes of Westwood Books in Sedbergh. The largest book shop in England’s Book Town has a stock of more than 70,000, mainly secondhand but with plenty of new and antiquarian books as well. Heather and Paul Thomas took over the business last year and have brought great enthusiasm and ideas to its running. They also sell maps, stationery, jigsaws and Ollie Collie gifts. Check the website for fiction, non-fiction, classics, recent releases, children’s and more, and if there’s something you want which isn’t listed, please email the shop. Pic: Joanne Withers. www.westwoodbooks.co.uk

Cheese. Appleby Creamery

Cheese. Appleby Creamery

Why wait for Valentine’s Day or Mother’s Day to celebrate with a cheese or two from Appleby Creamery? Check out the ‘cheese bundles’ on the website - for a one off occasion - or take out a subscription to its popular Artisan Cheese Lovers’ Club. The latter has a selection of cow’s, goat’s and ewe’s milk cheeses available in two, three, six, nine or 12 monthly subscriptions. Even bi-monthly. Founded in 2008 but built on a long heritage of cheese making in the town, Appleby Creamery produces a range of over a dozen cheeses including Black Dub Blue, Eden Chieftain, Eden Valley Brie and Nanny McBrie. www.applebycreamery.co.uk 

Vodka. Kin Toffee Vodka

Vodka. Kin Toffee Vodka

First came Kin Toffee Vodka, a ‘smooth blended vodka with rich caramel tones and a subtle kick’. Then last year Judith Wren launched Kin Toffee Apple Vodka, ‘an inspired blend of our award winning toffee vodka with rosy, zingy apple flavours’. The toffee apple drink, which can be mulled or drunk with ice, is now available online and in both 500ml and 50ml bottles. It’ll shortly be appearing in many Lake District stockists as well. Judith started the business in 2013, having tried her recipe for toffee vodka on family and friends - kith and kin. Within three years she was named Producer of the Year at the Cumbria Life Food and Drink Awards. www.kinvodka.co.uk

Paintings, prints, art supplies. Heaton Cooper Studio

Paintings, prints, art supplies. Heaton Cooper Studio

Original paintings, framed prints, canvas prints, sculpture, fine art supplies and art books are available online from this studio in Grasmere where four generations of a renowned family of artists - the Heaton Coopers - are represented. Art supplies include paints, pastels, paper, powders, pens, pencils and brushes while there’s work by William Heaton Cooper, Alfred Heaton Cooper, Julian Cooper, Linda Cooper and Ophelia Gordon Bell. The studio has been here since 1937 when William Heaton Cooper (his Norwegian mother was called Mathilde) bought some land off the village green. The café here is Mathilde’s. www.heatoncooper.co.uk

Scented candles, room mists and more. Randy Pike Boutique

Scented candles, room mists and more. Randy Pike Boutique

‘A touch of rural luxury’ may well apply to Andy and Chrissy Hill’s three luxurious B&B suites near Ambleside. But it’s also the ‘strap-line’ for a business which embraces scented candles, room mists, pillow mists, reed diffusers, Randy Pike Boutique’s own brand of vegan soap (coming soon), artworks, sculpture and gift vouchers for those B&B suites. Launched in early 2021, the Hills have teamed up with Wildheart Organics of Edinburgh, to offer not only Wildheart’s range but to produce a Randy Pike Boutique Signature Collection of oud wood and jasmine scented products as well. The couple also own The Jumble Room restaurant in Grasmere. www.randypikeboutique.com

Coffee. Carvetii Coffee Roasters

Coffee. Carvetii Coffee Roasters

Online orders are being despatched and locals can ‘click and collect’ from this roasters in Threlkeld where the main side of the business is ‘freshly roasted speciality coffee’. A range of teas and hot chocolates, brewing equipment, grinders, reusable cups and Espresso machines is sold as well. Set up by Gareth Kemble and Angharad MacDonald, and finalists at the Great British Food Awards 2020 for two coffees (Latitude Espresso and Guji Uraga Gomoro), Carvetii was judged Best Drinks Producer at the 2018 Cumbria Life Food and Drink Awards. Notes on the website make for good reading and there’s a Carvetii YouTube channel too. www.carvetiicoffee.co.uk

Chocolate. Saunders Chocolates

Chocolate. Saunders Chocolates

‘If you’re looking for delicious handmade chocolates for a gift or as a luxury treat, then you’ve found the right website’. That’s the invitation from Saunders Chocolates owner and artisan chocolatier Charmaine Jagger and her team who use ‘the finest Belgian chocolate and freshest local ingredients’ for their range of 36 chocolates. They include Peach and Saffron, Apricot and Ginger, Coconut and Mixed Spice, Darkest Rum Truffle, Tahitian Vanilla, Irish Cream Caramel and Champagne Classic. ‘From our shop near Carlisle, each box is carefully filled with a selection of chocolates and then delivered to your door’. www.saunderschocolates.co.uk

British wool. The Wool Clip

British wool. The Wool Clip

This Cumbrian co-operative has built an online shop (www.sites.google.com/view/thewoolcliponline), featuring many of its exclusive local and dyed fibres and yarns, plus a range of scarves, sweaters, bags, hats, socks, cushions, rugs, throws, small tools and its popular kits for knitting and needlefelting. Celebrating its twentieth anniversary this year, The Wool Clip’s aim is to encourage traditional skills like weaving and knitting while helping local farmers, and adding value to British wool. Its dozen or so members have their shop in Caldbeck. You can leave a message on 016974 78707 about an order or request. www.woolclip.com

Gingerbread. Sarah Nelson’s Grasmere Gingerbread

Gingerbread. Sarah Nelson’s Grasmere Gingerbread

The shop in Grasmere may be closed but - online - you can still buy this famous Lake District food whose ‘unique intoxicating spicy flavour tastes like nothing else on earth’. First produced for locals and early Lakeland tourists in 1854 by a cook called Sarah Nelson, the gingerbread is a cross between a biscuit and a cake, pale and crumbly in appearance but chewy on the inside. It won the Makers and Producers Award at the Cumbria Tourism Awards 2019. Also in the online shop are goodies like Cumberland rum butter, chocolates, ginger wine, homemade fudges, conserves, body lotions and candles. www.grasmeregingerbread.co.uk

Organic fruit, vegetables, apple juice. Eva’s Organics

Organic fruit, vegetables, apple juice. Eva’s Organics

‘We grow healthy food in ways that aim to protect the planet, or at least one little bit of it.’ That’s a good starting point in understanding the commitment to organic produce that lies behind Eva’s Organics, particularly in the year that the 26th UN Climate Change Conference takes place in Glasgow. Go online to check out Eva’s fruit/vegetable box scheme (the Simpson family delivers to over 300 households in Cumbria a week) and buy three juice winners from last year’s Great Taste Awards including Apple and Raspberry, and Apple and Ginger. Their latest creation, Sparkling Apple and Elderflower, is out this year. www.evasorganics.co.uk

Gifts. Parma Violet

Gifts. Parma Violet

If its presents for Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day or birthdays, Parma Violet will leave you spoilt for choice. Julie Evans’ shop in Kirkby Lonsdale has one of the most eclectic and occasionally eccentric range of gifts, cards, toys, clothing, homeware, crafts and pet products of any place in the county. ‘We’ve got some great rucksacks, heaps of jigsaws and plenty of silk pillowcases, all to help people get through these times,’ says Julie. Check out the website for cuddly toys, animal puppets, bags, scarves and the big range of Tintin merchandise. A free Tintin shopping bag is given away when customers spend £50 or more online. www.parmaviolet.co.uk

Beer. Bowness Bay Brewing

Beer. Bowness Bay Brewing

It may be a few weeks yet before Windermere Lake Cruises are operating again but at least you can toast Lakeland’s beauty by drinking beers named after some of its vessels. MV Swan and MV Swift are two of the four ‘steamers’ in the fleet; Swan Gold, Swan Blonde, Swan Black, Swan Free and Swift Best are five of the ales brewed by the Kendal based brewery. Buy online with free local delivery, or from Booths, Cranstons, Lakeland Artisan and other stores. There’s 20% off the price of Swan Gold, Swan Blonde and Fell Walker until the end of January. The brewery has a bar called The Barrel House (next door) and a shop. www.bownessbaybrewing.co.uk

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