Christmas Shopping Lake District Style: Grasmere Gingerbread
Every year, people flock to the picturesque Lake District (known locally as The Lakes) for the festive season; the combination of the breathtaking views and abundance of well-appointed accommodation simply cannot be beat. This year, if you are planning on spending the festive season in a luxury rental property in the Lake District, instead of trying to get all of your holiday gift and food purchasing done ahead of time, you might want to save some of that Christmas money for after you have already arrived at the Lakes.
There are a great number of shops available to you in the Lake District that reflect not only the area’s incomparable natural beauty, but also its unique brand of cultural flair. A unique gift that has been created locally is sure to be well-received, and it will undoubtedly invoke memories of a pleasurable holiday spent in good company. Before you head to the Lake District, print this page, grab your credit card, and stock up on the local offerings that you just cannot find anywhere else.
Grasmere Gingerbread, Cumbria
Gingerbread is practically synonymous with Christmas, and Grasmere Gingerbread takes this well-loved holiday classic and kicks it up a notch. Located in the heart of the Lake District National Park just north of Lake Windermere, Grasmere is a city well-known for its historical significance; the village houses Dove cottage, home of the famous English poet William Wordsworth.
The Grasmere Gingerbread shop was born of the creative mind of Sarah Nelson, who was born in Bowness on Windermere in 1815. The shop itself sits in what once was Sarah’s small cottage, tucked into a corner of the St. Oswald’s Churchyard, just next to the Wordsworth Hotel. Sarah was born into poverty, but through hard work, managed to avail herself of a career in service, and became a cook to Lord and Lady Farquhar. Sarah was encouraged by Lady Farquhar’s French chef to make Gingerbread, and soon, Sarah became a local fixture as she stood outside in the courtyard selling her goods, of which her gingerbread was the resounding favourite. Before long, Sarah had fashioned her cottage into a cottage industry, and hung her sign out front that read “Baker and Confectioner”. Sarah’s gingerbread recipe eventually became so popular she had curtains installed in her cottage windows to shield her secret recipe from prying eyes, and kept the recipe locked away in the local bank vault for safe keeping.
Over the years, little has changed in the tiny cottage shop originally owned by Sarah Nelson. Her recipes have been passed down through the generations, and the cottage shop sits exactly where it was all those years ago. The offerings, in addition to Sarah’s original gingerbread recipe, include toffees, fudges, rum butter, tablet, Kendal mint cake, lemon cheese, ginger beer, and jam. Any goods created by Grasmere Gingerbread are made and sold with Grasmere’s proprietary trademark, so accept no substitutes, as there are many vendors in and around Grasmere selling similar wares that are not made with Grasmere’s secret recipe or traditional methods.
In addition to the shop’s physical location, Grasmere Gingerbread also has a website where gingerbread can be ordered via mail. The shop is open year-round, with the exception of the four days of Good Friday through Boxing Day.
If this has got you thinking about visiting the Lakes Elysian Estates has several properties in the area which might be of interest, here is a link to them.