Farm shop café
A12, Junction 16; 4 minutes
Farm shop: Mon-Sat 9am-5pm
Cafe: Mon-Sat 9am-4pm
Check website for PYO. Closed BH
Vegetarian or vegan options
Parking available onsite
Originally a fruit farm, Lathcoats has flourished in all directions and now has a free Animal Area, an impressive patchwork of orchards, a café and PYO fields. Its more unusual experiences include alpaca trekking and chances to meet cute creatures from goats to guinea pigs.
Their still and sparkling apple juices and ciders are many people's 'desert island drinks' and The Bee Shed café serves up a flavour-packed punch with homemade cakes galore. There's an emphasis on fresh local ingredients, many available in the farm and gift shop. Cosy up to the wood burner on cold days or snaffle a prime spot on the sunny terrace in summer with a homemade milkshake.
If you have time, follow one of the 2km-6km wanders that are popular with locals. Enjoy the Essex countryside as you digest your breakfast or lunchtime treats, including Wicks Manor meats and home-spun jams and honey. Pop a Lathcoats Still Cider or gin into your heaving farm shop box to enjoy once home.
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The Extra Mile: Delicious Alternatives to Motorway Services is your essential glovebox guide to good food on the move. The guidebook is a great gift for motorists and foodies who prefer to avoid motorway services and boring, big-brand food. Find independent cafes, pubs, local coffee and tea shops and lovely farm shops near motorway junctions and main roads. To improve your journey, support small businesses and discover real local flavours, order your copy today (edition 4 published March 2023 and available now).