Irene village is a pretty spot in eastern Centurion. The Irene Farm, a dairy farm for over 120 years, is still one of the best places to enjoy this quiet suburb. And, the shop sells some delicious goodies as well.
Irene Farm History
Historically, Doornkloof farm was established by the Erasmus family. Later, Alois Nellmapius bought up a section of the farm and renamed it after his daughter, Irene. Thereafter, Johannes Albertus van der Byl – better known as Bertie purchased the farm in 1896. Subsequently, the farm remains in the hands of the van der Byl family.
Established in 1902, Irene township remains village-like with neighbours chatting, walks around the cricket oval, or buying the unpasteurised, disease-free certified milk from the dairy. Naturally, certified milk produces certified cream and the wonderfully thick, Irene farm cream alone, is sufficient reason to visit. But, there is more.
Alongside the sophisticated farm stall, is the Deck, a bistro-like coffeeshop. Moreover, they serve breakfast and lunch, from a small but, sophisticated menu. Additionally, it offers banting (carb-free) options.
Recently, two of us enjoyed brunch on the Deck. Furthermore, some old favourites are still on the menu. Indulgently, I ordered flapjacks stacked with berry compote and farm cream. Naturally, the food is beautifully presented. However, the cream is no longer the delicious, clotted variety for which Irene Farm is famous. But, rather a thinned down version rendering the dish slightly sloppy. Moreover, plenty of bistros serve a similar dish, so it seems the cream distinguishes it.
That said, the second dish of choice was avocado on rye toast with poached egg and hollandaise sauce. Sadly, the Hollandaise is clearly from a packet rather than the chef and slightly spoils an otherwise enjoyable meal. Luckily, the coffee is great, and the service friendly and attentive.
The very pretty setting
However, the setting is unbeatable, with a view over the immaculate lawn, pink flowering azaleas and a fountain. Moreover, there is a second restaurant, The Barn. Furthermore, the Barn is suitable for families to gather around long farm-style tables for hearty meals. Additionally, there are old tractors, a sandpit and jungle gym for children, allowing Mom and Dad time to relax.
Irene Farm is very pretty. Certainly, the lawns, pathways past the cowsheds, and down to the duck pond, offer safe space for children to run while mom and dad enjoy a coffee or a meal. And, don’t forget to buy their cream from the shop – you will not regret it.