South Canterbury is often referred to as the food bowl of New Zealand so comes as no surprise that the rich, fertile countryside around Geraldine boasts some of the most amazing produce our country has to offer. Turning high quality fresh produce into delicious fare that will delight the most discerning of palates has become the trademark of Geraldine.
Chief among the local producers is Barkers, the preserves and condiments icon, still proud to be operating on the corner of the family farm, with what must surely be the most picturesque outlook in the world for a manufacturing business.
When visiting Geraldine make sure you pop into Four Peaks Plaza to sample some of the award winning cheeses at Talbot Forest Cheese and take a peek through the square window to see cheese being made right in front of you in the micro plant.
From there, pop next door to select a suitable accompaniment for your cheese from the Barker’s range of chutneys and relishes or stock up on their fruity preserves and refreshing cordials. Across the courtyard you’ll find the Waihi Bush Organic Farm Shop where you can sample from their range of organically produced health food products, including the very popular Waihi Bush Flax Oil.
For a sweet treat take a stroll along the picturesque main street and tucked down Wilson St you’ll find the Cottage Pantry and Gallery (where food and art meet in heavenly partnership) for handmade chocolates by local chocolatier Coco. You’ll also find the Cottage Pantry filled with a treasure trove of store cupboard staples, natural foods including specialist flours, as well as organic and gluten-free products, grains and pulses.
From October to April each year the Geraldine Farmers Market is the place where the locals shop for fresh seasonal produce. It is the perfect place to catch up with friends over coffee and a baked treat under the trees in the churchyard, while local bands entertain the milling crowds.
The honey shop, situated on the very aptly named ‘honey corner’ at the northern entrance to the town offers a tour through every possible application of the apiary nectar. Get wonderfully flavoured honey and a range of honey based health products to boot.
As if this isn’t enough, our old fashioned butchery is acclaimed the length and breadth of the South Island for its locally sourced succulent meats available at affordable prices. Check out the range of deli items to make the most of any meal.
With all this bounty on their doorstep the cafes of Geraldine give their sophisticated city counterparts a run for their money in the contemporary food innovation stakes with several having scooped awards for their fare.
For something a little different pop out to the Valley Brewery Company where you can taste several locally brewed beers and purchase direct from the cellar door.
To whet the appetite before you arrive in Geraldine you might like to visit your local supermarket to try Clearwater’s organic yoghurt range, Addmore Elderflower drinks and Heartland Chips. Then take a taste sensation journey to Geraldine and share in a little slice of our delicious paradise!