It is not every day that you meet a team with such passion and shared consensus for fresh home-grown food.

Challenging it may be, but the team at The Tickled Pig in Wimborne are determined to utilise only the finest, freshest local produce, honing in on their self sufficient talents.

Delivered fresh from the farm, to the kitchen pass, is a flavoursome medley of fruit and vegetables, dairy and meats on a daily basis.

Since opening in 2012 The Tickled Pig has become a firm favourite with the locals. Their home-grown ethos and rustic charm appears to be the perfect recipe for success, having received high acclaim from AA Gill in The Sunday Times magazine, and inclusion in the Michelin Guide.

High accolades are testament to their hard work and commitment to such an important cause they feel so passionate about. And that goes for the entire team.

Jez Barfoot, who owns The Tickled Pig with wife Niki, is living his dream after residing in France for five years where growing your own food was a way of life.

“We are constantly evolving the menu and pushing the boundaries. It’s a hard business to be in and you can’t rest on your laurels. Food is my passion and being self sufficient is very important to me.

“I took part in Masterchef in 2009 and got to the quarter finals – it was a great springboard for the business. It’s all about knowing where food is produced sustainably and ethically.”

Everything at the Tickled Pig has a clear traceability and is as fresh as possible, picked and prepared on the same day.

Head Chef Daniel Howell, 32, joined The Tickled Pig early 2013 and is at the helm of the kitchen and strives to offer the best produce.

Born and bred in Wimborne, Daniel has firm roots in the local community. Daniel boasts a wealth of experience having spent ten years travelling and working in New Mexico, Canada, France, New Zealand and Ireland.

“When I finished school I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do,” explained Daniel. “I forged a couple of different career paths but always knew they weren’t right for me.”

It wasn’t until Daniel started travelling and working in kitchens in New Mexico and British Columbia that he realised there was a passion for food and a desire to learn more.

“When I settled in New Zealand for four years that’s when I started focusing on my cheffing career. I was lucky enough that one of the top restaurants in Queenstown took me under their wing.

“It was here that I was trained and inspired by a high calibre of chefs that worked for Gordon Ramsay, the Roux Brothers and Heston Blumenthal.

“Since then I’ve moved on, working a year in France as junior sous, and spent some time running a hotel kitchen on the west coast of Ireland.”

Daniel is now back in his home town and is bringing his food influences and knowledge from around the world.

 The kitchen also enrols staff on apprenticeships - Andre is their latest rising star who has completed his level 3 at Bournemouth and Poole College. Kelvin is a valued member of the team who boasts over 35 years’ experience working in 3 starred Michelin restaurants.

Daniel said: “I love the home-grown ethos here, it’s very important, there aren’t many places that follow and stick to it. We grow 70-80 per cent of our own vegetables in our allotment and polytunnel at Pamphill dairy farm. When the seasons allow us we forage for as many local treats as possible.

“We’re also involved with a community funded project at High Mead Farm, where all our own Oxford Sandy and Black pigs are raised.”

High Mead Farm is a therapeutic farm reliant on its volunteers who support the students with learning disabilities and helps anyone who wants to get back to work through their system.

“Because we're able to buy the produce from the farm, it helps them to become self-sustaining, so it's great for everyone and the community.”

Getting the whole family involved is very important to Jez, father of two girls: “We feel strongly about education. We have a vision that the restaurant would be at the heart of the community. We want to get families back around the dinner table together, it’s all about food and education.”

The Tickled Pig is a true testament to this, making sure tables aren’t turned so diners can sit back, relax, soak in the atmosphere and enjoy their evening

Community spirit plays a key role – the local Wimborne butchers and fishmongers supply fresh produce, enabling The Tickled Pig to utilise the best produce on their doorstep.

The Tickled Pig has many exciting developments in the pipeline - working alongside Dorset Charcuterie in Lytchett, plans for their very own deli could soon come to fruition, and their events catering business is proving a great success. Daniel, Jez and the team will be cooking at the Kingston Lacy Autumn Fair on Sunday, September 28.

Daniel added: “Being a part of something unique is really special.”

Signature Dish - Hay smoked pork belly

Daniel hay smoked pork belly at 70°C for two hours, laid over apples, lemons and lemon Verbena. It’s then slow cooked for three hours at 150°C to break down all the fats.

It is served with a selection of char grilled vegetables grown at Pamphill Farm including golden beetroots, braised in orange zest and juice, bobby beans, courgettes, fennel, lemon verbena and smoked in garlic and seasoned with salt, pepper and oregano.

·           The Tickled Pig, Wimborne, 01202 886778. Visit to watch a video which tells their story.