In 2001, we took over what was the derelict and overgrown Victorian garden of Applecross House. No serious attempt had been made to restore the garden before, but with a vision and a lot of hard work from employees, friends and volunteers and a very small grant, we were able to bring some of olden glory back within those four walls. Holes in the roof of the greenhouse, now our main building, were patched up (although we did have to issue a number of umbrellas on very rainy days!) and a small, rustic tearoom was born.
Balancing other jobs and two babies, owners Elaine and Jon, put every spare second in to creating what soon became a well-loved café/restaurant providing a unique and special place to enjoy a meal or afternoon tea. Over the years, we have evolved and grown. The garden is a constant work in progress but with the hard work of our few but resilient gardeners, it looks better than ever.
What we don't grow ourselves we source locally from the crofts and hills of the West Highlands.
Our seafood is sustainably caught by us and other local fishermen in our surrounding pristine waters.
We are about supporting young people striving to live and thrive in a fragile community on the western edge of Europe.
Long isolated by the treacherous Bealach pass, the Applecross peninsula has always been self-contained, relying wholly on our natural resources from the surrounding sea and hills for our wee community. The pristine nature of our remote west Highlands environment is not only breathtaking but provides us with the Estate venison (and the occasional Highland cow!), croft-raised pigs, chickens and lamb, plus all the bounty our surrounding waters have to offer, with its abundance of Applecross prawns, squats, lobster, mussels, mackerel, salmon, trout, and many more seafood delights.
Work on Applecross House was begun in 1675 and it is likely that the garden was created at the same time. For many years the garden was the exclusive domain of the Mackenzie Laird, his family and team of six gardeners who toiled to supply the 'Big House' with fruit, flowers and vegetables.
After falling into dereliction in the years following the second world war, we began our project to restore the garden in 2001, but instead of supplying the big house, we now toil to bring the very best of fresh, organic produce to your plate.