A quaint market town in the Scottish Borders, Kelso is a busy hub of history, art and daily life. It is a popular destination for tourists, boasting beautiful cobbled streets and attractions including Floors Castle and Kelso Abbey.

It is the most beautiful if not the most romantic village in Scotland.
Sir Walter Scott

The town hosts many events throughout the year including antique fairs and flea markets, its nationally acclaimed Farmers Markets, which occur on the 4th Saturday of the month, music concerts and the Kelso Races. Another popular event is the Common Riding, which happens during Kelso Civic Week. The Common Riding is a custom which many Scottish Border towns celebrate to acknowledge their tumultuous past when the Border Reivers roamed the wild Scottish Borders.

Producers Frae Kelso

Here are some notable local producers to discover when you next visit Kelso.

Border Berries

Located 7 miles outside of Kelso at Rutherford Farm is Border Berries. As one of the oldest family-run fruit farms left in Scotland, visiting Border Berries is a perfect family outing during the summer months. On the farm, you can pick strawberries, tayberries, raspberries, gooseberries, blackcurrants, redcurrants and peas! There is something about visiting a working farm and collecting berries to take home that is magical for each visitor.

Looking forward to the summer and picking fresh strawberries from Border Berries
Looking forward to the summer and picking fresh strawberries from Border Berries

There are family-friendly facilities onsite including the Tutti Frutti cafe which serves homemade cakes and sandwiches as well as homemade fruit cordials.

Last summer, Border Berries were voted one of the best places to berry pick in Scotland in the Scottish national newspaper The Scotsman. If you visit on a particularly clear day you can see magnificent views of the surrounding countryside including the famous Eildon Hills.

Border Berries is open between July and August depending on fruit availability.

DeliQuescent

DeliQuescent is an innovative spirit company based within Rutherford’s micropub in the centre of Kelso. As well as their wares being available in the award-winning micro-pub, you can find DeliQuescent spirits at Kelso’s Famrer’s Markets. Gin flavours include shimmering Parma Violet gin, Cherry Bakewell gin and Chi Qui Oui gin which is a classic gin style perfectly paired with tonic. DeliQuescent also create seasonal favourites including Christmas specials such as Christmas Pudding Gin Liqueur and more recently the world’s first Haggis gin launched for Burn’s Night.

Some of DeliQuescent's delicious spirits
Some of DeliQuescent’s delicious spirits

Keep your eyes peeled for some more exciting botanical concoctions this year!

John Hogarth Ltd

John Hogarth Ltd has been milling grains for over 100 years at their mill in Kelso. They specialise in milling oatmeal and pearl barley, two notable Scottish grains. The company has been focusing on reducing food miles by sourcing the majority of its cereal crops from within the Scottish Borders and are aiming to reduce carbon emissions during manufacturing. John Hogarth Ltd distributes grain throughout the UK, Europe and the USA. Although you can’t visit the mill, it represents Scottish food heritage and has kept true to its roots by keeping things as local as possible.

John Hogarth mills oats and barley from the local area
John Hogarth mills oats and barley from the local area

Burnside Farm Foods

Burnside Farm Foods is based on the Rutherford Estate outside of Kelso and has been a family-run estate since the 12th Century. Burnside Farm Foods specialise in game meats and offer game-based charcuterie, gourmet burgers and sausages all of which are available to order online. They also supply meat to some of Scotland’s top chefs. With the current economic climate, it is likely to see companies such as Burnside Farm Foods to pique people’s interest in heritage and game meats local to our area.

Pheasant in the wild
Why not try pheasant from Burnside Farm Foods instead of chicken?

Katy Cloud Marshmallows

Katy Cloud Marshmallows are a favourite treat among Borderers. The special, gourmet marshmallows are made in small batches and are hand-cut. There is also a variety of flavours too including lemon sherbet, Turkish rose, raspberry ripple and Gin & Tonic.

Over the past few years, Katy Cloud Marshmallows have won two Great Taste awards and also won Best for Homemade Confectionery Products 2018 in the Food and Drink Awards.

You can order these gourmet marshmallows online but they can also be found at some great outlets throughout the Scottish Borders including Born in the Borders and One Basket in Kelso. Bespoke mallows can be created for special occasions such as birthdays, wedding and christenings.

Love What You Eat

Kelso is a beautiful Scottish Borders town, largely unspoilt by development. It has remained a town full of character and history and is a popular destination for visitors from across Scotland as well as visitors from over the Border. A great time to visit the town to take in the sights and smells of wonderful locally-made food and drink is visiting on the 4th Saturday of the month when the Kelso‘s Farmer’s Market is on.

Discover these great producers mentioned in this article and more when you next visit Kelso.

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