I have visited Irene in Northern Gauteng a handful of times and one of my most favourite spots is the century old Irene Dairy Farm. The farm started operating in 1889 and now, five generations down the line it’s still the van der Byl family at the helm.
The farm was originally purchased by an Alois Nellmapius and after naming the village for his daughter (Irene means peace) he set about creating Irene Estate. Farmlands were expanded but only five years later the land was sold to Albertus van der Byl and its still belongs to that family. Albertus built up the dairy herd, planted hundreds of trees and laid out the beautiful Irene Golf Course (I’ve walked the course and it’s literally a walk in the country). The village of Irene has grown with the generations and through this time the family has worked tirelessly to keep the farm atmosphere …
Irene Dairy Farm offers a little something for everyone; there is the Dairy Shop that sells a decadent, rich, calorie laden thick cream (perfect for afternoon scones) and the rather unique concept of five litre buckets of fresh, raw farm milk. The shop is open from 8am to 6pm all year around (and by that I mean 365 days per year).
The estate boasts two restaurants, the Deck or Barn and both serve a range of freshly made breakfast and lunch dishes. Housed in well, a barn (and one of the original barns at that) directly across the farm yard from the shop, the Barn Restaurant serves breakfasts that range from fresh fruit and yoghurt to French toast to the Barn breakfast. Those with a lighter appetite will be satisfied with scones, muffins or pancakes from the Chefs Pantry while those visiting for lunch will have a tough choice choosing from the vast selection of salads, sandwiches, farm sandwiches and burgers on offer. Breakfast and lunch buffets are also offered on the weekends.
The Deck Restaurant is directly off the Dairy Shop and offers an equally delicious menu with all sorts of tasty treats. Breakfast options are crumpets, pancakes or a ‘proper’ cooked breakfast while sandwiches, open sandwiches, wraps, salads and chefs choices make up the rest of the menu – there is definitely enough to choose from.
So keep Irene Dairy Farm in mind next time you need a farm style breakfast or a five litre bucket of milk!
The Dairy Farm Shop on 012 667 2326
The Barn Restaurant on 012 667 4822
Wedding and Conference Venue:
Situated in a 120 year-old converted barn, the Irene Farm Conference Centre seats up to 100 people and is perfect for full-length conferences, private functions, end-of-year office parties and weddings. See: Irene Farm