“ Address: Stanley / Perthshire PH1 4PJ / Tel: 01738 710 044 „
I had passed the signs for Stewart Tower Dairy a few times when travelling on the A9 and decided to go in one day to break up the journey and treat myself to some ice cream. To get there you leave the A9 at Bankfoot, which is a few miles north of Perth, and follow the signs. Once you leave the village of Bankfoot you are taken up a single track road for a couple of miles to a converted barn which houses the ice cream parlour. The road was reasonably busy for a single track road and I passed a couple of vehicles on the way up but luckily there is just enough room for two cars to pass each other if one goes up on the grass verge. Once inside the converted barn you are struck by how modern and light the building is. One half houses a farm shop where you can buy freshly grown vegetables and the other half houses the ice cream parlour. There are an amazing 42 different types of ice cream available, all of the usual suspects like vanilla, chocolate, raspberry ripple or mango are there but those with a more adventurous palette might want to go for one of the unique flavours like marmalade cheesecake, tiramisu or avocado. The staff are happy to let you try a small sample of ice cream before you commit to buy and I tried the surprisingly nice fig and balsamic vinegar before plumping for the more mainstream raspberry ripple. All of the ice creams are available either in a small teddy bear cone for just over £1, waffle cones starting from £1.70 or tubs. Various sprinkles as well as chocolate flakes and fudge sticks are also available. As well as the ice cream there is a nice range of sandwiches and home cooking available plus a range of hot and cold drinks but we decided to stick to the ice creams. Judging by what we saw other people eat the food looks good as well as being reasonably priced so it would be a good place to stop for lunch. We chose to sit outside in the sun to eat our ice cream and there are nice views of the surrounding countryside but you are also on a farm with the associated smells smells. The ice cream was lovely, the chocolate my daughter chose was nice and rich and indulgent while my raspberry ripple was creamy but slightly lacking in raspberry and my friend declared her marmalade cheesecake ice cream to be nice and tangy with bits of biscuit providing a nice texture. There is a field of goats and ponies right beside the outside decking and the goats loved getting attention from visitors and came running over to be petted when we approached them. The Friesian cows which provide the milk for the ice cream are in a field just across the road from the ice cream parlour and did not welcome visitors to the same extent but it is nice to see where the milk came from. If you are going to visit Stewart Tower Dairy you need to remember that it is situated on a working farm with a road going right through it and pay extra attention to your children and keep all dogs inside the car. It is not a place that is safe for kids to be running around but it is still somewhere they will enjoy to visit. There are very few nice places to stop on the A9 for a break and drink and Stewart Farm Dairy may be a bit off the beaten track but is nice place to stop for a treat.