In need of a child-friendly yet still delicious brunch, lunch or snack-stop? Wild Raven Farm Shop and Tearoom in Rowsham has it covered!
We visited on a misty October morning – perfect weather for a treat. My little ones happily hopped out of the car to giggle at the huge pig shuffling around to get comfortable in the field by the car park, and the smallest loved seeing the ‘tac-tar, tac-tar!’ in the barn next to the farm shop.
We investigated the shop first, finding a plentiful array of beautifully fresh looking fruit and veg. The owners of Wild Raven come from a long line of family grocers, and it shows. We spent some time picking out fruit to take home – it’s lovely for the children to see what they’re going to eat, take the time to pick it out and place it in a paper bag. I could immediately see many hours of playing ‘greengrocers’ back at home…
They also have a great selection of locally produced meat and dry goods. There’s a frozen section, with loose frozen fruit, vegetables and bakery items to pick from, and well as a range of frozen meals. There’s even a stand of old- fashioned pic ‘n’ mix sweets, alongside some thoughtfully chosen gift items from local producers. So much to discover in a small space!
Pram basket full of groceries to take home, we headed to the tea room. Small but beautifully formed, its industrial decor is welcoming and a great contrast to the decorated cakes and floral teacups on display.
We ordered from the breakfast menu – it’s great to see a teashop that serves proper food from 9am, if you’re anything like me you and the kids are ready for ‘elevenses’ by then! They have a children’s menu, but the friendly lady behind the till told me straight away everything was cooked to order, so just to let her know what they would like. You can tell they’ve considered children and planned accordingly, so you’ll definitely feel welcome. We were given plastic kids’ plates and cutlery, and shown where the colouring books, pencils and highchair were available for us to help ourselves to. The food came promptly, freshly cooked and in generous portions. To my eldest’s delight her babyccino came in a proper china teacup, with the waitress assuring me we could swap it to a paper one if needed! The radio on in the background as we ate gave a nice relaxed feel, and stopped me feeling too self conscious when the youngest started banging his spoons around.
Filled up on brunch, we were ready to pop outside to the play area. The waitress kindly poured the remainder of our hot drinks into takeaway cups to take out with us – I didn’t trust the teacup making it out there unscathed!
From the decking there’s a ramp down to the outside kids’ play area, meaning we could easily take the pram with us. There’s plenty of outdoor seating on the grass, decking and within the play area itself for warmer days. It’s safe and contained even for tiny ones, so I could sit back whilst they set to exploring. Rubber chips make for a soft landing, and the horse chestnut tree raining down conkers provided perfect ‘ingredients’ for use in the two mud kitchens, and treasure to stash inside the trailers of the push along vehicles and wheelbarrow. There’s a playhouse, climbing dome and rocking horses too.
The toilets are in a block just outside the play area, which is really convenient, and include a baby changing table.
Our only regret is not taking some of the homemade cakes in the cafe home with us…it’s on the to do list for next time!