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“A great place for chilli lovers”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Edible Ornamentals

Edible Ornamentals
Ranked #1 of 1 things to do in Chawston
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: We began selling chilli pepper plants in 2001. The plants, and later pickles and sauces, gained very favorable attention and in 2007 we purchased Cherwood Nursery in Chawston which we renovated. Known for its 'Pick Your Own' chilli tunnel which is open to the public, the nursery has become the destination of choice for European hot pepper enthusiasts. In addition to fresh retail and wholesale chillies we also produce a selection of gourmet sauces, spice rubs, dried, smoked, frozen, and pickled chillies processed onsite in a 5 'Stars On The Doors' production kitchen. We also 'grow-to-order' for many other European hot sauce producers, restaurants, farm shops, delicatessens, and distinguished retailers such as Harrods and Fortnum and Mason. We host tours and workshops. Our chilli sauces are available from the nursery and local Waitrose stores. Edible Ornamentals has featured in the national daily press, The Economist and leading national trade publications The Grocer and Fresh Produce Journal. Joanna featured as a chilli expert on BBC's 3 Counties Radio, Radio 2's 'Chris Evans Show', and Radio 4's 'You and Yours' and has appeared in many TV programmes including Ready Steady Cook, Economy Gastronomy, Market Kitchen, Countrywise, Gordon Ramsay's 'Ultimate Cookery Course', 'The Hairy Bikers' and ITV's 'Sunday Brunch'. Heston Blumenthol visited and filmed an episode of his Channel 4 series "Great British Food" which featured Shawn and Heston eating a Trinidad Moruga Scorpion, hottest chilli in the world at that time. Edible Ornamentals won an extremely prestigious "Grower Of The Year Award" at the annual Horticultural Weekly sponsored event in 2011. That same year we were crowned "Best Chilli Grower UK" at the Fiery Foods Festival in Brighton. We were also named 'Local Food Hero' for East Anglia by the Good Food Channel's Market Kitchen and in 2015 awarded an extremely prestigious TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence.
Useful Information: Food available for purchase, Bathroom facilities, Wheelchair access
Milton Keynes, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
84 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“A great place for chilli lovers”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 August 2014 via mobile

My wife bought me an experience day for my birthday. We arrived 10 minutes early to be greeted with some lovely coffee. We were given an education on all things chillies from Shaun the American owner, if you have an interest in growing your own, finding out about the history of world wide growing, the different varieties or even getting some recipe ideas then this is the trip for you. Shaun's presentation is the right length of time you get to hand pick the variety and size of chillies that you wish to take home and get to taste 5 different heat varieties as well as some great jam's and chutneys where the chilli is a key ingredient. The restaurant also has some great inspirational twists, who knew Mac and cheese tastes so much better with some chillies in it!

Visited August 2014
Helpful?
Thank Simon G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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298 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Coventry, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Great hidden gem”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 August 2014 via mobile

Had a lovely time this morning on our trip around Edible Ornamentals. You are greeted with a nice cuppa and the Shawn takes you on the tour. A bit of background information and tips on growing your own chillies starts the tour, then you go for a guided tour around the greenhouses. You get to pick your own chillies (about 15 per person, which is really generous I thought) and then you finish off with a taste test of their sauces/pickles/marmalades and some of the freshly picked chillies. I warn you, the hottest will blow your head off if you have any more than the tiniest piece!

The best part of the tour is the obvious passion Shawn has for his subject. He really engages with his tour group and you feel like you've been introduced to his world by a true believer. He's American but pronounces tomato correctly (no doubt the influence of his lovely wife who assists in use shop and cafe); we just need to get to say aluminium rather than aluminum and his British assimilation will be complete.

Had a nice lunch afterwards with home cooked produce from the farm, so it doesn't get much fresher than that.

Visited August 2014
Helpful?
Thank Manamar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
st albans
Level Contributor
18 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“It's like a sweet shop for grown ups”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 August 2014

I can't rate this highly enough. From the wonderful warm welcome (come on,have a coffee) to the tips on growing chillies demonstration all the way through to the tasting session at the end. In between we got to pick our own chillies (many) and had a great tour of the poly tunnels, focussing on many species as we went.

Really, really informative (I picked up loads of tips) and frankly a lot of fun too.

These people are passionate and knowledgeable and love to share this with their guests. Please go and make sure it's still around for a good few years to come.

Visited August 2014
Helpful?
Thank curryken
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Huntingdon, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
19 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Chilli Experience - really good value”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 August 2014

Went as a couple on a pre booked tour. Easy to find, friendly staff. most welcome free coffee. Interesting talk from Jo on growing types of chillies and how to use followed by tour including picking many different varieties of chillies to bring home (Included in price). Then to the tasting of fresh chillies (take heed of the advice the Dorset Naga is hot!!) and then to the really tasty assortment of sauces they make on site.. You are then left to browse, buy plants and sauces all reasonably priced. The cafe menu looked good value for money and some interesting dishes 99% containing chillies. Unfortunately, only open on Fri-Sun but will definitely go back and try.
Great to see passionate people doing well and sharing with others. Highly recommend

Visited August 2014
Helpful?
Thank DaveR1957
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Peterborough, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
21 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Great chilli tour”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 August 2014

My wife bought me a chilli tour for a present which tuned out to be great value for both of us. It started off with great talk from Sean on growing chillies to start off which was followed by picking some chillies to bring home. They are very passionate about their work and really interesting to listen to. The chilli tasting was educational in the sense of knowing where to stop! Tried some mild, medium, hot and then as Sean said ferocious chillies which were even hit for him. Great chance to buy different plants to those in the usual garden centres. We didn't stop to eat but the food looked great so we will be back to try it.

Visited August 2014
Helpful?
Thank Shrewgene
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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