An ap­petite for Or­ford

Epi­cu­ri­ous vis­i­tors to the county should def­i­nitely in­clude a visit to this charm­ing coastal spot, where there’s an award-win­ning eatery or pro­ducer prac­ti­cally at every turn


WHAT TO SEE AND DO English Her­itage man­aged Or­ford Cas­tle is one of the most com­plete keeps in Eng­land and has an un­usual polyg­o­nal tower. Ex­plore the base­ment, halls and pas­sages through the chapel and kitchen. The view from the top is pretty in­cred­i­ble too, so take your cam­era.

Another stat­uesque build­ing is the strik­ing red and white Or­ford­ness Light­house, which has an open day on July 30. Due to ero­sion, the light­house is at risk and the trust that op­er­ates it isn’t sure how much longer it will sur­vive. So go and pay a visit while you can.

Book a Wildlife River Trip with the RSPB. Last­ing two-and-a-half hours, the jour­ney takes you along the Alde-Ore es­tu­ary, which is rich in wildlife, and lands on Haver­gate Is­land, fa­mous for av­o­cets, terns and brown hares, be­fore head­ing on back to Or­ford Quay. for book­ings.

Take a lunchtime or sun­set cruise out on the Lady Florence, en­joy­ing the views across the Alde and Ore, while din­ing on home­made food made with lo­cal pro­duce.


Of course you’ll have to pay a visit to Pin­ney’s down at But­ley Creek. The busi­ness has a fresh fish counter, and a frozen se­lec­tion of home­made crab cakes, pot­ted crabs and more to take home for sup­per. A range of smoked fish is avail­able to buy too, plus pick­les, olives and other deli items.

To go with your fish, a loaf or two of Pump Street sour­dough is a real treat, as are the sausage rolls and Ec­cles cakes). And next door to Pump Street, Or­ford Gen­eral Store is well-stocked with lo­cal pro­duce, in­ter­est­ing wines, and much more.

Newer to the vil­lage is Or­ford Meat Shed in Baker’s Lane, which sells fresh lo­cal meat and deli items, in­clud­ing lots of dif­fer­ent flavours of Lymn Bank Farm cheese.

Or­ford Crafts, the shop with all the bas­kets out front, sells lots of items ei­ther lo­cally made or with a Suf­folk theme, from bas­kets and pot­tery to pre­serves. Up­stairs is a dis­play of in­for­ma­tion from Suf­folk Un­der­wa­ter Stud­ies about the Suf­folk shore­line, in­clud­ing de­tails of the un­der­wa­ter me­dieval Dun­wich.


Or­ford is full of ex­cel­lent places to eat. Try Pump Street Bak­ery for pas­tries to take away and nib­ble on, or you can sit at the com­mu­nal ta­ble and en­joy a changing menu of sea­sonal plates and bowls, like the bak­ery’s sour­dough breads topped with ri­cotta, comb honey and pine nuts. www.pump­street­bak­

But­ley Or­ford Oys­ter­age was fea­tured re­cently as one of the best places to eat in the UK. Serv­ing its own smoked fish (from Pin­ney’s down by the quay), the Oys­ter­age fo­cuses on do­ing sim­ple things well. Grid­dled prawns with gar­lic but­ter, home­made fish pie, or a plat­ter of oaky smoked mack­erel. Desserts are all home­made. www. pin­neyso­for­­rant

For din­ner there’s The Crown and Cas­tle, a fi­nal­ist for Best Restau­rant in this year’s EADT Suf­folk Food and Drink Awards. The din­ing area has a homely feel and the menu has an Ital­ian slant, driven by flavour and sea­son­al­ity. www.crow­nand­cas­

The King’s Head is a tra­di­tional 13th cen­tury inn, fam­ily friendly and wel­com­ing to dogs. It serves home­made sea­sonal food and Ad­nams ales. On July 16 the pub hosts a quiz from 8pm, or pop in for live mu­sic from Paul Pryce on Au­gust 26. www.thek­ing­sheador­

The Lady Florence

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