A 3 night educational trip to Scotland for a group of ‘fresh produce specialists’, encompassing Glasgow, Perthshire and Edinburgh. The aim was to see, sample and learn about Scotland’s sustainable farming; whilst enjoying the delights of the highland countryside and the buzz of Scotland’s greatest cities.
The group were based at one of Scotland’s leading leisure resort, Crieff Hydro, for the duration of their stay. Set in 900 acres of Perthshire countryside, the resort was the perfect choice for this incentive group and its location meant they where right in the heart of Scotland’s countryside – yet Glasgow and Edinburgh were both easily accessible.
After arriving into Edinburgh Airport, the group headed straight to Edenmill Farm, where the Gibson family are dedicated to producing the best home-grown beef and local produce.
The incentive group were given a personal tour of the farm, animals and farm shop, followed by the opportunity to ask questions and sample daily life on the farm - with the aim of learning about sustainable farming in Scotland.
Lunch on day one was in nearby restaurant, The Old Mill, where they were personally welcomed by the chef who gave them an intricate description of the Scottish Tapas lunch they were being served, which included local produce and meat – sourced from Edenmill Farm where they had been that morning!
As a special afternoon treat on the way to their resort accommodation, the group stopped at Glenturret Distillery – Scotland’s oldest distillery – where they were invited as guests (rather than visiting tourists), to a special Famous Grouse Experience, followed by a tasting session lead by an expert distiller.
After arriving at their hotel and freshening up, the incentive group took the short journey to enjoy a French-inspired dinner made with Scottish produce. The owner and chef Yann, and his wife, hosted the group for a private dinner in the Bistro-style restaurant of their converted Victorian House – a great way to finish the first day!
After a hearty Scottish breakfast, the group travelled by 4x4’s to the magical Auchnafree Estate, 12,000 acres of stunning countryside famous for its history as a sporting grouse moor.
The guests were welcomed with tea, coffee and shortbread whilst being giving a short, interesting overview of the estate and its colourful history. Then, the group enjoyed the following rotational activities:
- White-knuckle off-road driving
- Clay pigeon shooting
- Rifle shooting
Before lunch, they took a short drive to the barn where they would be having dinner later that day. Here they saw their evening meal being hoisted above the fire – a full spit-roast pig! It had just began to roast, and would slowly cooked for a further 7 hours before it would be ready to eat!
After the awe of the spit-roast, it was back to the main estate lodge for a lunch of traditional cullen skink soup and venison. In the afternoon the group travelled by 4x4 to a remote part of the estate for a special falconry hunt.
An experienced falconer taught the group about the age-old sport of using the stealth and agility of falcons, with the speed and senses of dog, to hunt grouse and other game. Under the direction of the falconer, the dogs sniffed out the location of the grouse, then the falcon was released, and with quick sharp directions, it swooped to hunt and retrieve the grouse.
Later in the afternoon the group returned to the estate lodge where they were met by the estate shepards and their intelligent dogs, for an impressive interactive demonstration of the skills of their highly trained sheepdogs.
The day finished with a 4x4 trip back to the barn, where the hog roast was cooked to perfection. As the group were ‘food experts’ they were allowed to carve their own meat from the spit-roast – a great hands-on experience for everyone to enjoy!
After dinner and some beers, it was back to Crieff to enjoy the reminder of the night!