Posted: 07/07/2020

Bakery-café re-opens as deli in response to social distancing rules

Cumbria-based Three Hares Bakery and café has been transformed into a farm shop and deli by owners Nina Matsunaga and James Ratcliffe after they realised their cafe operation would not work in light of social distancing restrictions.

Bakery-café re-opens as deli in response to social distancing rules

Instead, the award-winning duo decided to add to their existing offering after requests from customers of their sister business, gastropub the Black Bull, looking to buy the products that chef Nina uses in the pub’s dishes.

Co-owner Ratcliffe said: ‘’We started to find we were getting an ever increasing number of guests asking us where they could buy some of the artisan produce we use at our sister business, The Black Bull.

“We started to toy with the idea of creating a small farm shop and deli. Then all of a sudden, we found ourselves in the middle of a pandemic which halted our plans. With the gradual lifting of restrictions, we started to gear up to reopen both of our businesses, but realised that we wouldn’t be able to open The Three Hares as a café due to social distancing.

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“So, after some pretty careful thought we decided to run with the idea of opening up as a farm shop and deli. We’ve got everything in place pretty quickly, but we’ve deliberately focused on selling produce that only we use, at the same time trying to ensure that we don’t impact anyone else’s trade.’’

Products on sale in the refreshed shop include Nina’s freshly baked sourdough breads, an extensive range of craft beers, organic, bio-dynamic, and natural wines, locally reared farm bred meat, fish, cheese and a selection of foraged ingredients. Also on offer is a range of frozen ready meals and takeaway teas and coffees.

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