Devon in the City
No matter how far away I travel, or for how long, I always look forward to returning home to Devon. Our way of life and relationship with food is mirrored in so many rural and coastal places around the country, and even across the world, but for me there is something unique about Devon.
My travels frequently take me away from my beloved countryside, plunging me deep into the bustling smoky cities. Sometimes they are my destination; often they are just a waypoint to somewhere more remote. For me, the transition into urban environments takes me further from home than just the miles travelled. In fact, I feel more at home in rural Italy than I do in London.
It is for that reason that I strive to find slices of Devonian living that have found their way into the city. The easiest thing to find? Food of course!
A recent trip left me with 3 hours to kill in our busy capital, so I decided to follow my stomach in search of morsels from back home. A stroll through Marylebone led me past a window filled with chipped ice, upon which laid a myriad of fresh fish and shellfish. A popular fishmonger & seafood restaurant, Fish Works has 2 locations in London, both of which serve up fish landed in our infamous Brixham harbour.
A short walk around the corner leads me to my favourite food sanctuary in the city – La Fromagerie. A café and delicatessen, they house a stunning array of delicacies from across the globe. My search for a taste of home leads me into their astonishing cheeseroom. Despite being surrounded by emmentals, gorgonzolas, and reblochons, I show no interest in them. Instead I am expertly guided to the selection I need to keep me from feeling homesick.
Laid before me are the creamy Sharpham Goat Brie, tangy Beenleigh Blue, earthy buttery Elmhirst, light flaky Ticklemoor, and of course the sharp crumbly Devon Blue. An exquisite board of cheeses sourced entirely from Devon taking centre stage in the heart of London. The plate seems to serve up every flavour from home, and combined with my longing to be back there, I almost feel as if I’m already back in those rolling green hills, strolling in our sandy coves, and standing proud atop one of our glorious granite tors. And whilst I savour this Devon produce that has found it’s way to London, that is how I feel – Proud of our producers working tirelessly to deliver food that the top chefs in the city love.