A Taste of Essex
Your senses will come alive here, with the fresh air and beautiful countryside bursting with colour and filled with the chatter of wildlife. But it's about more than just sight and sound. Treat your taste buds with fresh local produce direct from our farmers' markets or our tasty menus in our local inns and pop in to the delicious delicatessens to take home some heavenly reminders.
For centuries, the county has harvested fish and shellfish from its 350 mile coastline. The Colchester Native Oyster was first farmed off the Blackwater Estuary by the Romans; in fact, such was the Romans' passion for them, they exported them home! Legend has it the Romans also grew grapes on the island and, with its gentle south-facing slopes, vines still flourish today at Mersea Island Vineyard. Nearby Purleigh is also famed for its New Hall Vineyard, the venue for the popular English Wine Festival in September. The tidal waters of Maldon's Blackwater estuary have also given rise to another regional delicacy; Maldon Sea Salt has been manufactured here for over 2,000 years and is renowned for its high quality.