Last month saw the launch of a cheese and wine shop, Milne & Pickles, in Peebles.
McLean and Gould have been friends since school. They had been thinking about working together for some time and, prompted by the pandemic to make some changes, they decided “life was too short” and to “go for it”.
The pair had been searching for the right premises in Peebles for about 18 months before finding the shop in Northgate. “It was a wellness shop before,” explains McLean.
“It was light airy space and had a really nice feel to it.”
The produce is mostly local, with cheeses sourced from Mellis in Edinburgh and charcuterie from Peelham Farm, an organic producer in Berwick, as well as from Edinburgh’s East Coast Cured.
Sourdough and scones are supplied by the local baker and there’s room on the shelves for local honey. Beers are sourced from Tempest Brewery and Broughton Ales, and gin from Tweed Valley Distilling.
The wine range is chosen specifically to match the meats and cheeses. “We use a company in Fife called L’Art du Vin,” says McLean.
“We have six whites, six reds, a couple of rosés and a sparkling. We have some nice light ones for daytime drinking and some fuller bodies wines for the evening.”
The pair could not have chosen a busier time to open – right at the start of the week-long annual Beltane festival. After four days of trading had to close the store in order to re-stock the shelves.
“We didn’t anticipate just how busy it would be,” admits McLean. “It’s the festival’s first year back after Covid, so everyone was mad for it.”