We posted a couple of days ago about farmstalls: small rural shops near big roads traditionally selling produce from a local farm.
These days farmstalls are a massive industry all on their own, some having grown into fine dining establishments replete with boutique hotel rooms and even wedding venues attached. Some remain delightfully tiny, selling literally only one product, e.g. pineapples. But the one thing that unites them is a fetish for exceptionally fresh, exceptionally simple and delish fast food.
There are 4 main farmstalls en-route to Swellendam, Peregrine Farm stall in the Elgin Valley – its freshly squeezed apple juice is a must being in the heart of the Western Cape’s apple county. Houw Hoek Farm Stall is next, opposite the very old Houw Hoek inn which dates way back to 1834. Be careful on exiting this farm stall as it can be quite hair-raising crossing this very busy road.
Next and perhaps my personal favourite (and if you are in no real hurry) would be Dassiesfontien – not for the faint hearted I might add! Situated between Botrivier and Caledon, Dassiesfontien is a complete melee of food, home décor, leather, enamel, and collectables. Admittedly it can feel somewhat overwhelming, so it’s worth spending some time scouring the treasure trove of goodies to find just the right thing. However if scouring and shopping is not your cup of tea, the food is hearty and comfortingly traditional.
Finally there’s the Blue Crane Farm shop, which I must add I have never been too - because I’m always racing towards the hidden gem that is Ou Meul Bakery.
This small and fairly unassuming bakery in Riversonderend is, in my opinion, where you can devour some of the best pies in the Western Cape! It has now become so popular with tourists and locals alike that it has opened up sister branches all around central Cape Town.