The shop itself specialises in artisan products; both our own products - made from scratch with care and respect - and suppliers products, both local & continental, who grow and produce with similar care; so you can feel good about what you eat.
Beautiful Deli Gift vouchers are available on request.
Our Own Products
In essence we are a 'traiteur'. Products are made fresh each day in our bustling kitchens at the heart of the Deli. Our Homecooked dish freezer is always ready stocked with wholesome dinner dishes & our own ice-cream, all made just about 2 metres from where it stands. Alongside the dishes of joy we sell our home-made lush green pestos, spiced curry pastes, smoky chorizo jam, shiny black olive tapenades, wholesome houmous and seasonal salads. We prepare seeded crispbreads, crumbly biscuits, spiced chutnies studded with fruit, membrillo, deli ice creams, rich fruit jams, home infused vinegars... & our entire homemade cake selection...
We also stock all the grocery & quality produce ingredients in our shop that we use ourselves in our kitchens.
If you need lunch in a hurry we have a dedicated lunch takeout fridge in the shop room with all our daily house salads, sandwiches & home-made cakes packed ready to go so you won't need to wait at the take out counter, just grab what you want and head to the tills.
We are passionate about artisan producers and specialise particularly in cheeses, cured meats, coffee & bread. We also stock many other hand crafted groceries such as oils, pasta, biscuits, antipasti, vinegars, nuts, honeys & fresh produce besides. These are chosen primarily by taste and sustainability, and if we don't like it, we won't stock it.
We aim to ensure our guests go away with the whole experience of how a product became from grower to shelf. We listen to our suppliers so we better appreciate their art, dedication and passion, as a result, we're better representatives of their hard work & products. Our friendly staff are on hand to offer helpful advice when needed. There is no heavy pressure to buy but lots of opportunities to learn about and taste food.
We carefully monitor all the seasonal variations in our cheeses (which are a wonderful feature of farm cheese) in order to provide you with the best cheese available. When you buy in the deli you will be encouraged to taste, and we hope that the cheese you take home is what you expect and what you will most enjoy. We cut to order but do have an open chiller if you are in a hurry.
15+ years of delicatessen experience has led us to the small suppliers we use for our artisan cheeses. We are constantly impressed & charmed by the eclectic selection of UK & continental artisan cheeses and love learning about small producers and their methods. We also stock artisan quality cooking cheeses such as 24 month old Parmesan, both Ewe's milk & Goat's milk crumbly, salty Feta, soft thick Ricotta, Manchego, plump pillows of buffalo Mozzarella & even the distinctive Cretan cooking cheese Mezythra. Also store cupboard cheese essentials such as crackers, biscuits & accompaniments.
We also buy through Neals Yard Dairy in London who consistently procure great cheese from about seventy cheesemakers from farms around Britain and Ireland for us to share with you. They are a benchmark of quality for British cheese. Their main aim is to keep in close contact with the cheesemakers and customers and above all to be in very close contact with all the cheese passing through their hands. This knowledge allows us to do our best to give you any insights they have gleaned.
Daniel Duran of Pata Negra Ltd sources truly remarkable traditional Spanish specialities made by small artisan producers. On a research trip to Spain, Danni introduced us to his 'butcher' - Carlos of Renilla Ltd whose family have been making Iberico Ham for generations from pigs roaming in the beautiful dehesa, full of ancient oak trees. A small family run business on the Salamanca-Castela de Leon border, it's a totally transparent company which has excitingly raised the bar on integrity of provenance, sustainability and quality. Our culinary socks were knocked off by how beautifully free-range their Iberico black foot pigs are, just how pure their production methods are and as a result how simply delicious their meats taste.
We stock these stunning Jamons in our shop and from the same hill wandering, wild acorn eating Iberico pigs come the recognised Chorizo in all it's forms: cured 3 foot slicing (cular), semi cured hoops, fresh cooking (parilla).
We also stock their Gran Reserva Jamon Serrano, pimenton cured pork loin Lomo and the deeply sweet, earthy Morcilla blood sausage. 'Morcon' - the traditional and original mother to the present day chorizo but irregular, much fatter and a whole lot more tasty. Their take on Salsichon - made short, fat and irregular using the fresh wild thyme or oregano that grows in the surrounding fields. A thyme Lomo, a pepper Lomo and the most recent addition of the 'perrito' - a fresh sausage either with 'pimenton', 'wild thyme' or 'black pepper and wine' which we now cook into our daily dishes & sandwiches.
We also work closely with Filippo and Mary Volpe our Italian suppliers 'Eat, Drink Ideas Ltd' who are synonymous with artisan Italian quality products. Filippo travels annually to hand select his hams from the small scale producer of DOC registered Proscuitto di Parma taking his hollow bone taster with him. He also provides us with the ever popular Finnocchiona salami, a large, soft salami from Tuscany made with fennel seeds on the inside, Felino which is made from the rest of the pigs used for Parma Ham - a fine salami, so sweet and smooth and Pancetta Copata a lean full flavoured rolled pancetta from the neck of the pig used for antipasti but has some delicious recipe uses too.
We stock other European classics such as French saucisson sec & seche, whilst the Deli Kitchens makes Pates, Terrines, Rilletes, & our own take on Porchetta - slow roasted pork stuffed with fennel, sea salt, garlic & rosemary. We also cook our own Free Range Hams from pork supplied by Grangeworth Farm by Bill Palfreman & his team in Woodbridge, Suffolk. Pigs for his pork are all souced from Blyborough Free Range Pork, where pigs are not only reared outside but are also fattened outside free range.
Finally, we roast beef rare for slicing & whole free range chickens for all our sandwiches & dishes. All the fresh meat we use is sourced from our neighbours, the excellent Barkers Bros Butchers - this allows us to keep track on the provenance of our free range meat, source local and rest assured that it is excellent quality.
Our Artisan Bread
By DOVECOTE BAKERY for Shelford Delicatessen
We know that Chris Murray is a dough Alchemist and are in heady love with his Crusty Sourdough, plump Pugliese, 100% Rye & in fact his whole artisan bread collection.
Real bread is so amazing, we forget that the dough is a living thing, one visit to his bakery unit could inspire you to write poetry about this wonderful substance, this is stuff of life?
Chris' passion & knowledge about bread & baking is so in-depth, having learnt in Switzerland, UK & France he has formed his own practices to make the perfect loaf for each bread recipe.To hear Chris talk about each of the starters he ferments it's like he is discussing the aroma of fine wine. He describes his Rye starter as smelling like apples & cider when it's at the top of it's game - his wheat starter as having the aroma of elderberries stems. There is also his defined techniques for each type of loaf he makes.
A true artisan and inspirational to chat to about crumb, crust, dough, flours, fermentation or any bread history you can imagine.. including his artefact, an original 1920s Swiss kneading machine, used for yeast raised dough kneading.
He is based in the Arbury, Cambridge and we stock his Dovecote Bakery Bread range throughout the week in our shop and use Dovecote Baguettes, loaves & teacakes in our café. Obviously his bread contains no additives, colourants or preservatives - it's real!
Dovecote Bakery Bread
100% Rye, Pugliese, Midsummer, Wholemeal Sourdough, Sourdough Tin, Seeded Ryebread, Batch loaves, Rossicky, Baguettes, Flutes, Focaccia, Ciabatta, Crumpets, Teacakes, Stretch Pizza Breads, Brioche...and many more.
Since the very first morning we opened back in 1999 we have also stocked bread from Newnham Bakery in Derby Street, Newnham, Cambridge. John & Nicola Palmer have a lovely traditional Bakery there and their bread is a range of traditional British loaves which are always 100% consistent in quality.
Wine & Beer
We sell a range of fine wines using the long established expertise of independent wine merchants Noel Young Wines from just up the road in Trumpington. The brothers Young have been established for more than 23 years and have won over 25 national awards. We handpick our range of whites, reds, rose & bubbles to match with our current menus and seasonal products, some coming from Noel's own Vineyard 'Magpie Estate' that he co-owns in the Barossa Valley, Australia.
Alongside this you will find Sherries - Amontillado, Cream, Fino - accompaniments for Spanish Hams & other dishes, Prosecco for Prosciutto di Parma and of course Port for our unpasteurised Colston Bassett Stilton. Also the more difficult to find wines for cooking purposes such as Marsala, Brandy & Madeira wine.
We are craft ale adorers and our growing range includes local producers and tasty numbers from further afield.
With great beer comes great responsibility. Fortunately, beer genius is a lifestyle for the BlackBar Brewery mastermind Joe Kennedy based in Harston. This 'brewmonkey' is working day and night to fuse a traditional beverage from the depths of Mesopotamian heritage with a quaff of the modern era. We are delighted to stock his beautiful craft beers.
We also stock ales from a much celebrated local independent microbrewery Mark at Moonshine Brewery based on Shelford Road in Fulbourn. His beers have won numerous national and regional awards and are characterised by their clean, fresh taste thanks to the natural spring water used to make them.
We sell only Monmouth Coffee beans (whole & ground) because it is a completely transparent business with great attention to detail & taste. They source from single farms, estates & cooperatives and roast beans to order for us here in the UK so the beans are as perfect as possible. When the aroma of Monmouth coffee beans hits the deli they have usually been roasted within the last 48 hours. Monmouth re-profile their roasts each time they buy a new coffee and as beans develop and change over time, this means we always know seasonal variations of flavour, so do ask us - it's a fascinating science.
Monmouth Coffee Company form sustainable, fair and equal trade relationships with growers & exporters and travel extensively throughout the year visiting farmers, producers & cooperatives. Interested? Read their most recent newsletter
Our beautiful teas all originate from Sri Lanka. As well as the climate and soils providing the perfect conditions for growing tea, Sri Lanka's location close to the equator means that all of the tea crops are naturally higher in antioxidants than other teas.
We supply Mortier's Tea from local lady Rochelle Mortier. Born in Sri Lanka, Rochelle created Mortier's Fine Ceylon Tea to bring classic single estate Ceylon teas to UK tea drinkers. Unblended natural tea direct from tea estate to cup.
We also sell Tea from Kandula Tea Company which is an independent UK tea company set up by Gail Shreeve and Jane Myhill based in the heart of East Anglia. Kandula offer a range of premium whole leaf blends & infusions. The company forms long-term relationships with tea producers and the estate communities, and are based in both the UK & in Sri Lanka to oversee the picking and blending. This allows them to build on friendships with the people who grow and blend their range of teas. All Kandula Teas are picked, processed and packed in Sri Lanka, which contributes to their local community.