A farm so fare

Church Street, Graaff-Reinet,
Tel (049) 892 3212

I scoured the area around Graaff-Reinet for a padstal. There had to be one. I drove in every direction on the roads to Pearston, to Jansenville, to Goliatskloof, all place-names with stories attached (especially Goliatskloof). Graaff-Reinet was, it appeared, a giant of a place, but no padstal.

Of course, there was a reason. The people of the Karoo are a friendly, cooperative bunch and after the 1971 drought, more than forty ladies got together and opened an outlet in the town. Obvious, really, in a place where more than half the vehicles on the road are passing traffic, concentrate your efforts into supplying one shop at the bottom of Church St, the one street that everybody travels.
The result is an absolute delight. A wider, fresher range of biscuits, jams, chutneys, breads, cakes, game meat, quiches and koeksisters than Fortnum and Mason. (I suspect that Fortum’s doesn’t sell koeksisters at all). And you’ve got to love a shop that has a sketch of a dachshund on the notice showing the whereabouts the wors’

Try Koperpennie Wortelslaai or Beetroot Chutney. There are pickles you’d never have thought of, each labelled with suggestions as to what it might accompany. There are even Muffins in a Jar, with contents layered like a Namibian sand-bottle and instructions for converting the dry ingredients to make 12 muffins. And there’s lekker Ginger Beer.

Farm Fare is butcher, baker and condiment-maker. So wherever you are coming from, visit these ladies, and kill many Goliats with one stone.