Outside of our Kirstenbosch family picnic, visits with both Ouma and Oupa, and then Evan, Natasha and Evalynne, the other thing we slotted in two weekends ago was a trip through to Hathersage Farm, situated in Somerset West and host to “The Marketplace“, a local goods market that is held every second Sunday on the farm grounds.

Currently looking into possible places to try and market Chantelle’s Cookies & Cakes, local goods, or food markets if you will, is actually a pretty smart choice for something like our treats, because people are more likely to pick up on something that they can see and taste in front of them, and then hopefully make the purchase which in turn will set the juggernaut that is word of mouth rolling.

Hathersage has a fantastic vibe to it as people picnic outside under the shade of this huge tree behind the farm house, with a good selection of local goods stalls dotted around the grounds. Music flows freely into the air, and often you’ll get an impromptu performance from a marimba band or even the local Taiko drumming group as extra entertainment.

Now for the section most interesting to us – the food segment! All of the food stalls at Hathersage are hosted in the farm house itself, creating a bustling hub of activity as people cram in around all the little stalls while the salespeople do their best to get their product noticed. Everything from pies to waffles, sandwiches to homemade sorbet are available for purchase, and as a whole it is a pretty exciting little spot.

However, and it is a big however, the fact that all the food stalls are indoor presents a considerable problem for me as the heat generated inside is pretty high, meaning chocolate covered goods like my truffles and Turkish delight would simply not hold – and getting a stall outside would be pointless because a) the foot traffic outside is a lot less and b) the people know to go inside to buy food goods.

So despite the delicious food we ate and the time we spent lazing in the shade and soaking in the vibe, it looks like Hathersage Farm won’t be right for Chantelle’s Cookies and Cakes after all.

One of the first local goods markets that we visited, Lourensford Farm Market (which is also in Somerset West) is still in the running, but their rather slow and lackluster response to our various queries and slightly stringent appearance agreement means they certainly aren’t at the top of the pile. On the other hand, Willowbridge Market at the Willowbridge Shopping Mall in Durbanville is not looking too bad at the moment – despite the fact that they are the most expensive to exhibit at and are situated 50 km away from our center of operations!

Hey, what we need now is foot traffic, and after all, they seem to have that in droves…

(Anyway, for more photos of our little excursion to Hathersage, click here.)