Here’s just a taste of what the county can serve up to you.
With 88 miles of coastline, of course seafood has always been a vital ingredient in Dorset cuisine. In recent years it’s been particularly celebrated at SEAFEAST – the Dorset Seafood Festival in Weymouth – just a few miles from our self-catering cottages.
The Seafood Festival used to mean rows of stalls lining Weymouth’s historic harbour, and plenty of celebrity chefs have turned up to deliver cooking demonstrations. Due to Covid, it’s relocated to the nearby Weymouth peninsula – which boasts spectacular views of the Dorset coast.
Of course, seafood is available every day of the year. Drop in for lunch or dinner at a local restaurant, pub or cafe, many of which specialise in locally caught produce. If you prefer to cook your own, find a quayside fish merchant to pick up something fresh off the boat that morning.
Our well-equipped self-catering kitchens make it easy for you to prepare your seafood just as you like it. Or perhaps you’d prefer the traditional British seaside fare of fish and chips, eaten on the beach!
Cheese you'll love
The most famous cheese produced in the county is Dorset Blue Vinny. Once made in farmhouses across Dorset, it died out in the middle of the last century. Then, using a 300-year-old recipe, it was brought back to life in the 1980s and is now a firm favourite. It’s made on Woodbridge Farm, near Sturminster Newton.
Blue Vinny isn’t the only cheese made here. Dorset Red, Cave Aged Cheddar and Dorset Crofter are just some of the other varieties produced in the local area. It won’t take long to put together a full Dorset cheeseboard for your self-catering cottage.
You can’t go far in Dorset without finding somewhere that makes sweet treats – be they chocolates, ice cream or cakes. You may have spotted the brand Purbeck Ice Cream on your travels in the UK. The Purbecks are the Dorset hills near Swanage, dominated by the iconic ruins of Corfe Castle.
Purbeck Ice Cream has been made on the farm in those hills for over thirty years and has become the choice of discerning restaurateurs in London and beyond.
The Purbecks are also home to Chococo, who’ve been crafting chocolates for almost two decades. Like so many other food and drink producers in the county, they are a family business that grew out of a passion for a particular product.
You're spoilt for choice for self-catering options
These are just some of the fabulous local foods you can enjoy during your stay in Dorset. There are loads more we could mention – Dorset apple cake, the Dorset knob (a biscuit) and Dorset jugged steak.
We’re also blessed with a host of other local food producers. If you want to make your self-catering holiday a feast of Dorset fare, a great place to start is the Dorset Food & Drink website. This shows you much of what’s available and where you can buy it.