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With some of the region’s top producers and chefs as his friends, and the best homegrown harvest on his doorstep, LUKE HASELL’s food diary was bound to be good...

WHAT WOULD YOU do with a combined plot of 550 acres of farmland across the Chew Valley? For neighbouring farmers, Luke Hasell and Jim Twine, establishing The Story Group in 2003 was a no-brainer. Organically breeding Devonshire suckler herds, the pair joined forces with poultry experts Bill and Emma Yeats, of Lowerstock Farm, who then developed The Story’s chicken offering – they even came up with their own breed! – and their pigs. In 2005, Luke started the company’s box scheme, before co-founding The

Community Farm, with Phil Haughton of The Better Food Company, on 50 acres of his prime agricultural land. When he’s not spending time with his wife, Melanie, and their three

children – or up early on cow duty – Luke’s busy with countless business ventures, including co-directing Eat Drink Bristol Fashion (1-18 May). Oh, and he’s in training for the London Marathon. (Good luck, fella!) ✱

MONDAY Breakfast: Bowl of Bristol’s Essential Deluxe Muesli before I head out to meet with The Story team. We have a new shop at Blagdon Butchers, so it’s exciting times. Lunch: My weekly pasty from West Harptree Shop, and an afternoon filled with emails and accounts. Dinner: Mel cooked our famous Story Chicken and Community Farm broccoli bake (the secret ingredient is Campbell’s chicken soup – shh!). It’s a recipe stolen from when I worked at The Blue Bowl Inn.

TUESDAY Breakfast: Another bowl of muesli and a cup of tea. Lunch: Had a meeting to get all of our paperwork done for Glastonbury – this year we have two organic food stalls. Lunch was a terrible petrol station sarnie on the go! Dinner: Took Mel to The Pig near Bath, for the much-

anticipated 25-mile menu. Venison and pork roll, quail Scotch eggs and deep-fried black pudding balls were great to start. Mel had pigeon breast,

and I had the pig chap meal with apple sauce and the most amazing crackling.

WEDNESDAY Breakfast: Muesli and a cup of tea before the school run. Lunch: Popped to see a few customers – if you eat at Poco, YMCA or Yurt Lush in Bristol, you’re eating Story meat. Lunch was a sandwich and crisps on the move. Dinner: At The Pony & Trap, as we do the final preparations for Eat Drink Bristol Fashion in May. The tasting menu was fantastic! Look out for Josh’s ham, egg and chips with homemade brown sauce, and the best chocolate sponge with a beetroot sorbet.

THURSDAY Breakfast: In preparation for the London Marathon,


it’s porridge this morning to help me cut out snacking. Lunch: A Tideford Organic butternut squash soup and fruit from our veg box, with Yeo Valley yoghurt. Dinner: Took home a steak from the Story shop, so Mel and I were lucky enough to have rump steak with mushrooms, tomatoes, roasted potatoes, courgettes, carrots and a lovely pepper sauce.

FRIDAY Breakfast: Muesli, toast, and Origin coffee while helping Mel with the baby. Talk to Josh about EDBF and then pop to see the butcher to check today’s deliveries across Bristol, Bath and Chew Valley. Lunch: Homemade winter veg and pearl barley stew. Dinner: Organic Story sausages and mash, then a rock ’n’ roll Friday night of bathing the children! Finally, I have a Pukka Tea

Night Time edition while I work late.

SATURDAY Breakfast: Porridge again, with honey and banana. Cow duties at 8am and then an eight-mile run. Lunch: In Bravas Restaurant on Cotham Hill in Bristol – it’s great tapas, and all very flavoursome. Dinner: Cooked a delicious chilli pasta dish with seafood and tomato sauce. Ate a truly massive portion, ready for my practice marathon run tomorrow.

SUNDAY Breakfast: Cow duties at 8am, then eat porridge before an 18-mile run. Gulp! Lunch: Head to Yurt Lush Café at Creative Common, where we are proud to present Bristol’s only 100% organic Sunday lunch, including a choice of Story meats – either topside of beef or rare-breed pork with mix of our veggies. Quality. Dinner: We’re too stuffed to eat any more, so I just sip a (Bristol-based) Pukka Tea Three Fennel before bed.

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