Heritage vegetables, bio products, chickens and cheese at a bio farm near Nyon
For those readers who like to source bio (organic) products and to buy their food from a local grower, La Ferme des Pralies (tucked away in the hamlet of Arnex), is well worth a visit. This bio-garden and farm shop not only sells fresh local, seasonal produce, but also an array of artisan condiments and drink products, which are sourced from other local farms.
Writer Trish Thalman went along to the farm to meet owner, and former chef, Gabriella Salvadori who in 2007 began growing top-quality, bio heritage European vegetables, along with a variety of seeds of heritage plants that she has collected during her travels around the world.
Photo above – Gabriella Salvadori owner of La Ferme des Pralies
Savoury Herbs – Thai Basilic and Shiso
Gabriella offers a variety of fresh, colourful vegetables and fruits for sale year around. Greens, onions and herbs, roquette, lettuce and new-season cabbage are currently on sale, whilst aubergines, peppers and herbs will be available in July. The specialities of the farm include exotic tomatoes, aubergines, peppers and savoury herbs such as Thai Basilic and Shiso (Japanese wild basil). These are produced in eco-friendly ‘plant tunnels’. Most of the produce is locally grown, such as the sweet, perfectly beautiful, ‘real’ flavoured strawberries.
Fresh eggs (with orange yolks!) are delivered by the brood of contented bio-chickens (cackling away next to the farm shop). There are also speciality breads from an artisan-boulanger in Geneva, goat’s cheese from a nearby farm and other ‘products-of-the-day’ sourced by Gabriella knowing that her customers always enjoy trying something new from the shop.
Check out: the strawberry gelée infused with Tasmanian pepper, a delicious, unique taste; the Pesto made of ‘Bear Garlic’ (l’ail des ours) which is beyond any taste sensation you find in a supermarket jar of pesto; or a jar of preserved Botzi heritage pears, known in Canton Fribourg, which are delicious with fresh ice cream – or eaten as they are.
Some of the farm’s customers include local restaurants who appreciate the quality and diversity of the products from the bio-farm itself and those of Gabriella’s local suppliers. All of the products bearing the label ‘La Ferme des Pralies’ are prepared and hand processed by Gabriella in her kitchen attached to the farm shop.
The long term plans for the farm are to continue to provide quality products, diversification with plant breeding, supplying restaurants with quality foods, to promote Gabriella’s own catering skills using the fresh produce, promoting ‘event days’ introducing different foods and condiments, to continue producing wholesome eggs from contented chickens and most importantly, promoting local products of her like-minded, partner.
The www.lafermedespralies.ch website in French, is easily understandable, with photos and prices of produce on sale and upcoming events at the farm (for example there was a tomato plant sale in May). There are also heritage recipes from Gabriella’s own collection, using the produce and condiments from her shop.
How to get to the farm shop
The farm shop is 5 minutes from Nyon in Arnex, just off the main road between Nyon and Crassier. Look for the direction signs at the roundabout when approaching Borex from Nyon. Check out their Facebook page.
Open: Friday: 14:00 to 20:00 Saturday: 09:00 to 18.00