Feasting on the farm with innovative exceptional food
In between a moment of drooling over their delicious culinary creations, we caught up with Jo & Anthony, the dynamic team at the helm of The Kitchen at Primrose Hill Farm. Read below as the pair offer advice for planning wedding day dishes and share their passion for beautiful, local, seasonal, fresh and exciting produce, served with creativity and flair.
Explain Primrose Hill Farm’s the new catering concept, The Kitchen.
With feasting and sharing at its heart, The Kitchen concept offers fun food for extra special occasions. We create strikingly visual dishes, which are informal in the way they are enjoyed – envisage hearty platters of seasonal food and rustic dining, perfectly in keeping with the Primrose Hill Farm ethos. We aim to create the feeling of a farmhouse table, a place where family, friends and extra special guests come together to enjoy outstanding food. Expect effortless modern eating – simplicity, fresh and vibrant.
Tell us more about the provenance and produce of the menus at Primrose Hill Farm? What inspires the menus?
All ingredients are sourced locally wherever possible, without compromising on quality – we don’t source locally for the sake of it! The Cotswolds provides an amazing larder that we are so fortunate to have on our doorstep. We also take great inspiration from the calendar and our menus are heavily led by seasonality. We believe that ingredients are at their best when in season and should be celebrated on our plates, in our dishes and in our bowls.
To you, what makes Primrose Hill Farm extra special?
The location is simply amazing – nestled in the hills, a barn, considerately modernised and bang on trend. Laid back country chic, without a single sniff of chintz!
How do you work with couples to create bespoke menus?
We build a relationship with our couple, working collaboratively to develop the story for their wedding, which is told through the food. We start by immersing ourselves in the day. It’s important that we get the vision to allow us to ensure the food is reflective of their style.
We always try to bring an element of the couple’s personality into the food. We find out how we can subtly translate a story or family favourite into the food, without gimmicks – just a subtle nod to a special element. For example, we had a pair who both loved Marmite, so we created Marmite butter for the bread.
What three questions would you recommend couples ask their catering team in the planning stages?
How flexible is your caterer? Can they do what you want?
Are they able to deviate from a formulaic menu and personalise the menus?
Will you be able to help with table design? It may be that a caterer can support with sourcing cutlery, crockery and other such items to help you create your desired table setting look
What has been your most memorable wedding to date?
Always those where the love of food is evident, and sharing is at the centre of the day. One that sticks in mind is a nine course Italian banquet. The bride and her bridal party came and made the pasta guests ate on the day with our team beforehand.
What is the next big thing in wedding catering – trends, themes, styles etc.?
Less Formality– We hear “relaxed” a lot in briefs from couples!
Pop of Colour– Expect food which photographs beautiful, with edible flowers, heritage vegetables and such like becoming ever more present
Light Food– Gone are the days of meat and two veg, people don’t want anything too heavy. Ottolenghi has been a great influence on salads to accompany meats.
Longer Canapé Receptions– Couples favouring a longer canapé reception to support the social aspect of their day, followed by two courses over the traditional three
Sweet Stations– Pudding stations add a different and ever more social element to the final course, together with a sense of variety. They can also help to dress your space too
What would be your ‘desert island’ dishes for the ultimate wedding breakfast choices? (i.e. Desert Island Discs)
Extravagant canapés with a simple, yet flavoursome wedding breakfast – a delicious meat with a spicy dressing and vibrant salads, finished with a giant pavlova for everyone to get stuck into and share!
What would be your top pieces of advice for couples planning their wedding food?
Keep it simple – don’t over complicate things
Know your budget – be prepared to be flexible, but be realistic about it
Share your mood board / Pinterest page with your caterer – don’t let catering be an add on, allow them to be part of your vision
Work out what is important to you and try to bring your personality into it
Don’t try to please the masses, do what YOU love! The day is yours and it is impossible to please everyone
From a food perspective, what are the key things that can make or break a wedding breakfast?
Have enough canapés so the drink doesn’t go to your guest’s head – People have often missed a meal due to the timings of the wedding so don’t leave people short
Have a clear vision that you’ve developed and listen to your supplier’s experience. If you try to over complicate things at every point you can run into issues
Don’t over fill your guests so they become reluctant to dance!
What’s in store for the year ahead?
We wonder if the informal, social aspect of food will extend away from a formal seating plan. Couples may follow in the footsteps of Meghan and Harry and have bowl food – it’s certainly an easy way to work around difficult seating plans or lengthy guest lists to maximise your venue’s capacity. Watch this space as they say!