The Malt House: A picture-perfect country escape

Published in The Independent on Sunday on January 18, 2015

Tucked in the heart of the Cotswolds, the Malt House matches its picture-book surroundings. Built in the classic buttery yellow stone of the region, with three acres of gardens and orchard behind it, the long, lean Grade II-listed building dates back in parts to the 17th century, with more added in 1905.

The Malt House has long been hosting guests, but since last year, when new owner June Denton took it on, a complete overhaul has turned it into something special. While keeping an English country olde-worlde air – think exposed wooden beams, stone window seats, and vintage furniture – the restoration has happily brought the plumbing and heating into the 21st century, as well as sprinkling little modern luxuries throughout. Continue reading “The Malt House: A picture-perfect country escape”

The family behind the Tyrrells crisps has found a new use for potatoes – artisan vodka

Published in The Independent on Sunday on March 15, 2015

Humble as it may be, the potato is a versatile vegetable. And it’s fair to say that its foodie potential has been thoroughly exploited by one Herefordshire farmer.

William Chase, whose parents were farmers themselves, began his career in potato trading before hitting on the idea of posh crisps – and so Tyrrells was born in 2002. The brand was a huge success, reconnecting snack foods with home-grown produce, and in 2008 William sold it for £30m. But he wasn’t done with spuds. Next up: potato vodka. Continue reading “The family behind the Tyrrells crisps has found a new use for potatoes – artisan vodka”