“ Daisy Made Ice Cream / Ice-cream cafe, farm and crazy golf located at Skellingthorrpe, Lincoln Road, Lincoln, Lincolnshire LN6 5SA „
As someone with a decent milk intolerance I'm very picky about my Ice cream, it's something I enjoy but if I'm going to have it it had better be good.
Now Daisy Made is a small farm based business on the outskirts of Lincoln. The customer facing part of the business consists of a small to mid sized cafe with seating for somewhere in the region of sixty people with tables and comfortable chairs. At the counter there is always a range of a couple of dozen flavours of ice cream, involving the old favourites such as vanilla, chocolate and strawberry, but also more unusual flavours such as liquorice, turkish delight and apple - and while many of them come around quite frequently, you can count on finding something new on each visit, unless I suspect, you're a very frequent visitor indeed!
Outside there is a small children's play area with assorted small animals to watch and pet, along with seating and ample parking.
The ice cream itself is an absolute delight, made from the milk of cows kept on the farm, and made on site, it is very creamy rather than the more 'ice' based type that often comes out of a tub at the super market. As stated earlier there is a wide range of flavours available, and I've yet to find one I dislike (even peanut butter was an eye opener!) Cones range from 90p for a simple cone with scoop, upwards for waffle, chocolate coated cones with multiple scoops. The ice cream can also be bought in one or two litre tubs to take home, which are sold in insulated bags to make sure they get home well frozen. Also available are crisps, tea, coffee, soft drinks and cakes.
The only thing i've never found, is a dairy free ice cream. Maybe I've not looked hard enough.
The staff are always friendly and helpful, even on days when they are frankly rushed off their feet.
Overall a very pleasant experience, the best ice cream I've ever found and a pleasant afternoon out whatever the weather. If you're ever in town, make sure you get there. You'll regret it if you don't.
In these ever troubled times, it's good to know of one business, local to me, that is still doing a roaring trade and developing nicely. Especially when they just happen to produce my idea of Sunday afternoon heaven.
Daisy made is situated just outside the village of Skellingthorpe, only a few miles on the outskirts of the historic city of Lincoln, for me this is one of the true undiscovered treasures of this unending county.
If you are heading north bound on the A46 and you come to the Skellingthorpe roundabout, glance to your left and you may see the sign - only trouble is, in summer it gets pretty much obscured by the bushes. Marketing is definitely by word of mouth in these parts.
The newest addition to the site is the purpose built brick and wooden lined café enclosure which opened around Easter 2009. The original wood cabin didn't have any seating space, so you could only sit on the benches outside, whereas now you can sit down with all the family and tuck in comfort
The wooden tables and chairs including plenty of high seats, plus a couple of leather sofas make it a very pleasant place to tuck into the freshly purchased dairy magic. Dotted around the walls are pictures and close-ups of the moo-vers and shakers on the farm
~~~~Ice cream selection~~~~
On any given day there are typically around 16 flavours to choose from, which are rotated around. As well as the traditional staples like Pure Daisy vanilla and Chocolate , there are more exotic sounding flavours on offer like Lancaster Bomber, Nikki's nectar or Peanut Butter, plus lots of fruity varieties. There's a daisy lite option available which as the sign indicates may be suitable for diabetics. You can get a small tub, single, double, waffle, chocolate waffle, right across the spectrum.
The only surprise for me given there's such a good sized sit down area now is that they haven't yet ventured into the Ice Cream Sundae / Banana Split offerings.
If you don't fancy the cold stuff, they do also have a selection of cakes, hot drinks and home made fudge.
If you live within 30 miles or so, they sell one or two litre tubs, priced at £6.30 for 2 litre and £3.30 for 1 litre, in ice cold vacuum bags. They do the job, keeping things perfectly frozen (although naturally I have to check them everytime as soon as we get home -- strictly for quality control purposes you understand.)
Single cones start at 80p , twin cones £1.10, waffle cones starting at £1.50 so very good value all round.
One particularly inspired concept, is being able to optionally drive through and get your ice creams, which if it's a nasty old autumnal day isn't such a bad idea. There's a dedicated lane marked out , obviously with it being near the golf etc well worth keeping a close eye out for excitable kids running around the place.
Otherwise there are plenty of car parking spaces. Perhaps 30 or so in the tarmacced area, plus a large grass overflow space for at least 100 more motors at a push.
~~~~We like to Mooo-ve it ~~~~
If you feel the need to burn off the excesses of an afternoon cone or three, there are plenty of outdoor activities available to get stuck into.
The "Moo" riband event of a family afternoon at Daisy Made has to be the 12 hole Crazy Golf experience. Club and ball hire is £2 for adults , £1.50 for kids, and they do have smaller plastic headed putters available for little ones, which might not be a bad plan. Last weekend while we were in the café an old fella walked in asking for napkins, sheepishly followed by a chap clutching a stitch worthy swelling over his right eye, the victim of a slightly over enthusiastic swing from his little daughter. To avoid any future whoops a daisies do make sure you give them plenty of room!
During the busier summer months, there's usually some one manning the golf shed, otherwise you can get the clubs from the ladies in the café. For the more competitively minded, a pencil and scorecard are thrown in for free
On to the course itself, built by some clever chaps in Sweden called City Golf. The lush green velvet tracks, the little metal circles for the perfect tee off, and lots of carefully blended farm themed design features make it appealing to kids and adults alike.
First hole requires you to putt through a little house, a rather plainer slopey hole follows before you come to the intriguing cow shed third. If you manage to angle it just right, you'll even get a congratulatory moo, and out pops your ball on the other side. Be warned, our little fella managed hit his ball in and it never came out (luckily that was on his second free extra go!). The fourth features a couple of curvey bits, but it's hole 5 where it really starts to get interesting.
There are many holes in World golf which have laid claim to the coveted title of toughest holes in Golf. Think of the devlish bunkers at the road hole 17th St Andrews, or the watery perils of Amen corner at the US masters, and then just think again. From toddler to Tiger, this hole defeats them all. It's got a skateboard style upslope, a basketball hoop at the top but herein lies the problem. Too soft it falls short, too hard it simply bounces off the back and out. And there's one other very unique feature. If the ball bounces out and flies out of bounds beware. As one of our pals found to their cost, the boundary fence is electrified!
So having no doubt fiddled your score through this one, the remaining holes feature in no particular order, a full size cow obstacle, a tractor, a rickety troll bridge, a windmill and a mini helter skelter. Once the ball goes in at the 12th it's never coming out, so warn the kids if it's quiet enough to sneak round for a second 12.
Just at the back of the golf there's a pair of sit on lever operated yellow mini diggers with a sandpit ripe for some digging. At a pound a go it's decent enough value as it does last for a few minutes and with three levers to experiment with plus the ability to swing round in the seat the more ambitious youngster can produce the makings of a great sandcastle.
Another word of warning when giving them that pound to slot in, make sure they don't follow in the footsteps of our little genius who some how managed to drop between his legs and then push it under the metal frame into the engine. Still even at £2 a go it would still be good value, and I challenge all of you to resist the temptation to have a go at some point.
Over to the other side of the café during the summer season, there are a couple of hutches housing guinea pigs and rabbits, some goats in an enclosure, plus a selection of mini pedal powered tractors, and a decent sized sit down big blue tractor with room on the back for those precious family snaps.
There's also a little play house and a fairly dilapidated miniature digger and sandpit if you don't want to expend any fundage on the daisy diggers
If you arrive around say 3.30pm , and take a look at some of the herd out in the field, it won't escape you're attention that the udders are by then packed to the max full of the white stuff. They are virtually queuing up by the time the Easton milk truck arrives at 4ish to collect the deliveries.
If I still haven't yet convinced you then let me try one last time. When I'm out and about, occasionally as a nod to my childhood, I like to try a little milkshake or two. Invariably it's disappointing, going from the ultra thick chicken fat filled sludge of Mcdonalds, to the gone in 10 seconds dodgy funnel shaped restaurant versions.
Forget those, here's my ultimate Daisy made icecream milkshake. Trust me, once you've tried this, you'll never buy another pack of that Nesquik powdery nonsense. Dig through the cupboards and dust down a whisk or better still a blender. Fetch out a couple of 2 litre daisy made imports (I'd recommend Lancaster bomber and chocolate as a combo) scoop it into a bowl and mix away. The resulting super smooth effortlessly gorgeous calcium rich drink is one which I'd challenge anyone to better.
~~~~Till the cows come home~~~~
I've just heard there's a Christmas pudding flavour available, so I'm heading over there shortly for one last Pre Christmas treat.
If you ever find yourself passing by the outskirts of Lincoln, I'd highly recommend you give it a whirl.
Who knows, you may even be moo-ved to tears!