South West chestnuts, farmed organically, supplemented by grass-fed lamb and chestnut-fed pigs.
Planted in 1985 as a chestnut and daffodil farm, Chestnut Brae Farm produces around 12 tonnes of organic sweet chestnuts every autumn. Apart from chestnuts, products include chestnut flour, chestnuts in syrup and chestnut honey. Chestnut-fed heritage Wessex Saddleback pigs and grass-fed organic Wiltshire lambs are also reared on the property.
Chestnut Brae Farm is on 30 hectares just south of Nannup in WA’s south west. Interested parties can stay in the three-bedroom farm-stay cottage, take a tour of the farm or even volunteer to work as part of the team. And Chestnut Brae’s gardens are part of the Margaret River Organic Garden Trail.
Current owners John and Linda Stanley bought the farm in 2013 with a plan to create a sustainable, organic and self-sufficient farm. “We were looking for a product Australians didn’t understand,” says John. “The aim was to find an unusual product that allowed us to add value and not be a ‘me too’ producer.”
When to buy
Fresh chestnuts are usually available during April, May and early June. Peeled frozen chestnuts, however, are available from Chestnut Brae all year round.
“The peeling machine allows us to freeze the nut – that’s the critical point of difference for our business,” says John. “If you’re only selling fresh you’re only selling around 40 per cent of the crop whereas we sell 100 per cent.”
Sweet, fatty chestnut-fed pork is usually available from the start of the chestnut season until the end of the year.
Where to find them
Chestnut Brae’s chestnuts and related products can be bought online and from shops across Perth and the south west including Basil’s Fine Foods (Mindarie), Boatshed Market (Cottesloe), Peaches Fresh (South Fremantle), The Cidery (Bridgetown) and Western Growers Fresh (Busselton). While they turn up at a range of restaurants throughout the season; Ten Acre Block, for example, serve a dish of poached potato with roasted chestnut sauce using Chestnut Brae nuts.
Chestnut-fed pork is available from Dirty Clean Food.
Or, visit the farm at 106 McKittrick Road (Off Chalwell Road), Carlotta, Nannup