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White Lake win Champion cheese third year running
White Lake Cheese won Supreme Champion at this year’s British Cheese Awards, becoming the first cheesemaker to win three years in a row. Their English Pecorino came ahead of just under 900 other cheeses entered into the awards, held on the first day of the Royal Bath & West Show, in Shepton Mallet, Somerset on the 29th May 2019.
The Somerset-based artisan cheesemaker took the Supreme Champion award last year for Sheep Rustler and in 2017 with Pavé Cobble.
English Pecorino is made from thermised sheep’s milk with vegetarian rennet. According to the producer, it has “a sweet smooth, long-lasting creamy flavour with subtle nutty notes. It is washed in brine three times a week and is matured for around six months.”
Roger Longman, co-founder and cheesemaker at White Lake Cheese says: “The British Cheese Awards is a great competition for artisan cheesemakers. The level of judging is superb as the judges are extremely experienced, they are the best in the UK, and we really value the feedback that we get from them.
“The British Cheese Industry at the moment is a fantastic place to work in. As well as established cheesemakers there are also new and upcoming cheesemakers, like Marcus Fergusson who makes Renegade Monk, who are making really exciting cheeses. There’s a real camaraderie in the industry that you don’t see in many other businesses.”
Julius Longman, chairman of the British Cheese Awards, said: “This English Pecorino from White Lake Cheese is an exceptional cheese and a worthy Supreme Champion. It has a semi-hard texture with a well-balanced creamy and nutty flavour. It’s the third year in a row for Pete and Roger and a testament to their skill in cheesemaking.”
Independent coffee chain removes plastic milk bottles
Independently owned coffee chain Boston Tea Party (BTP) removed all single-use plastic milk bottles from its operations as part of a new environmental initiative held on June 1st called ‘National Making Things Better Day’.
Celebrating the chain’s removal of single-use coffee cups in 2018, BTP are pledging to do something more for the planet each year on the 1st June anniversary.
Boston Tea Party’s 22 cafés currently use 190,000 single-use plastic milk bottles every year, and milk is one of BTP’s biggest annual costs at over £220,000. It plans to work with its organic dairy supplier to select the most sustainable alternative, switching to pergola bag-in-box milk and then a fully reusable, returnable solution by the end of the year.
“What a year it has been since we took the groundbreaking decision to remove single-use cups from our business,” says Sam Roberts, co-owner and CEO of BTP. “The reaction from our teams and customers has been frankly amazing.
“12 months on and the anti-plastic movement is really gathering some significant momentum. That said, nothing much has actually changed within the wider industry. Lots of noise and sticky plaster fixes, but very little concrete action. Businesses still seem happy to turn a blind eye to the waste product from their activities thereby outsourcing the cost and responsibility of the clean-up. Not cool.
“We’re on a continuous journey to try and make things better, and with this in mind we’ve decided to launch our very own ‘Making Things Better Day’ on the 1st June, forever. Each year we’ll be announcing a (for now) plastic based problem we’ll commit to resolve. This June we’re gunning for single-use plastic milk bottles. By the end of this year we reckon we’ll have rid ourselves of them entirely. Good times. However we can’t afford to rest on our laurels and can’t fix this on our own, so please get involved.”
Cheese Industry Award for Mary Quicke
Mary Quicke from Devon-based cheese producer, Quicke’s, has been awarded for the prestigious Cheese Industry Award at the British Cheese Awards 2019.
The annual award was presented to Mary for “her impact on the industry, particularly the recent development of the Academy of Cheese, with its promise to transform how cheese is sold across the globe with its training programmes.”
Mary took over the running of the family farm in 1987 and received an MBE in 2005 for her contribution to farming and cheesemaking. She became a member of the Guilde Internationale des Fromagers in 2016 and was instrumental in the establishment of the Academy of Cheese in 2017, also sitting on the board at both the FSA (Food Standards Agency) and AHDB (Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board) Dairy Sector.
Mary Quicke said: “Following a day tasting some of the best cheese in the land at the British Cheese Awards, I’m absolutely blown away to have received this trophy. British cheese has boomed, so to be singled out as someone who has made a contribution to this movement is truly an honour. For me, great cheesemaking starts in the soft boundary between admiration and partnership with the land, and I’m delighted to see more and more artisan cheesemakers making wonderful cheeses from the ground up. It was great also to judge for the Young Cheesemonger Award, to see the passionate and knowledgeable young people coming on. The future is bright for British cheese and at Quicke’s, we’ll continue to be driven by the pursuit of great cheesemaking, farming like we’re going to live forever.”
Travelodge announces expansion plan
UK budget hotel chain Travelodge plan to open 17 new hotels and create 350 jobs in 2019. New sites in the South West include Chippenham, Swindon and Winchester.
The group will continue the roll-out of its new build ‘budget chic’ Travelodge Plus concept and introduce more ‘premium economy’ SuperRooms which include mini chiller cabinets.
The expansion programme in the UK will also see Travelodge’s restaurant business extended. It is expected to open its 200th hotel with an on-site restaurant in 2019, with 13 of the new hotels featuring its bar café concept.
The 17 new hotels will be developed by third-party investors, with an approximate investment value of £115 million. The group is now in 595 locations in the UK, Spain and Ireland.
Peter Gowers, Travelodge, chief executive said: “Despite the uncertainty facing the UK, the long-term prospects for low-cost hotels remain strong. The next phase of our expansion plan will see us deliver more choice in more places than ever before. We’ve come a long way from our early days by the side of the motorway and today’s Travelodge not only offers the same great value as always, but the extra choice of our new Travelodge Plus and SuperRoom concepts – ideal for those for who want just that little bit more.
“Britain’s travellers are changing. We expect more and increasingly we travel to a wider range of places. More and more of us are working away from home during the week, and we’re taking more long weekends. Travelodge now has to satisfy the needs of travellers who just want the essentials at a low price, and of those who also value the little extras. With a network expected to reach 595 hotels this year and our new line-up of Travelodge, SuperRooms and Travelodge Plus, we’re focused on making sure we can give you the right choice, in the right place, at the right price.”
South West hotelier Peter Brend dies aged 61
Tributes have been paid to Peter Brend Senior, a director of the family-run Brend Hotels group, who has died at the age of 61 after a “long battle with his health.”
He was one of six directors of the group which comprises 11 three- and four-AA-star hotels in Devon and Cornwall including the Carlyon Bay, St Austell and the Saunton Sands, Saunton.
Born in Barnstaple, he first worked as a trainee mechanic in his father’s garage business before joining the Saunton Sands hotel in 1977 after his parents purchased it.
A statement from the company described Brend as “a passionate hotelier… He was also a very special and loyal man to his work colleagues, showing respect, kindness, always on hand with support and generous with his time. Over the years he formed lifelong friendships with guests which has shaped the nature of the company to what it is today.”
Peter is survived by his brother John, his sisters June and Patsy, his children, Peter, Michael and Hannah, partner Kirsten and his nine grandchildren.
FOOD AND DRINK NEWS
Goddards launch Planet lager
Isle of Wight-based Goddards Brewery are launching a new gluten-free, vegan lager called Planet.
Made using local malted barley, they describe it as sitting between a pilsner and a Vienna lager.
Brewer Josh Davies said: “It was great to be let loose to spend the last 7 months experimenting with this new rogue brew from Goddards. Trying new ingredients, brewing methods old and new, to create this refreshing flavoursome lager.”
Xavier Baker, managing director at Goddards Brewery said: “Moving into our 26th year of operation we have decided to diversify our range by bringing to you our new lager, Planet.
“As much as our new lager is unique in our range, we still wanted to maintain a link to our Island born and brewed status, hence the name Planet was born. Where possible we will use planet barley grown on the Isle of Wight.
“You may be wondering why gluten free and why vegan friendly. We have been inundated with requests to bring you something that fits this criteria, and Planet lager has been the perfect way to do this and fill the gap that there has been within our range.”
Planet Lager (4.6% ABV) is available in 30 litre kegs and 330ml bottles (sold in cases of 24). For more details call 01983 611011 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
New Forest ice cream’s new flavour
New Forest Ice Cream are adding Candy Floss to their range of 50 flavours. They describe it as “insta-worthy…[and] right on trend.”
Christina Veal, director said: “Candy Floss is very nostalgic that has been loved for many years and we are so excited to bring back this family favourite in a whole new and refreshing way! The flavour, texture and playfully pink colour are sure to be the star of any dish. However you choose to serve it, we are sure that the Candy Floss ice cream will catch the eye of all ages!”
The new Candy Floss flavour is available in 4l and 4.75l catering tubs. For more information, visit www.newforesticecream.com or call 01590 647611.
Chilli Farm launch BBQ sauces
South Devon Chilli Farm are introducing two new BBQ sauces for the summer, Cool ‘n’ Smoky and Hot ‘n’ Smoky.
Both varieties feature chipotle chilli, allspice and molasses for “a sauce that’s rich, bold and flavourful with just the right kick”, according to the producers. They add: “The Cool ‘n’ Smoky variety brings a mild pop of spice to the grill courtesy of the jalapeño chilli. The Hot ‘n’ Smoky variety turns up the heat by showcasing the fruity heat of the habanero chilli in a mouthwatering blend of sweet, tangy and smoky.”
Kaz Lobendhan, trade director, said: “As interest in BBQ and chillies continues to grow, we identified BBQ sauces as a great opportunity to expand our offering. With the warm weather fast approaching, we hope that these sauces will become essentials for all occasions from summer parties to BBQs on the beach”.
South Devon Chilli Farm Cool ‘n’ Smoky and Hot ‘n’ Smoky BBQ sauces are available in glass bottles with an RRP of £3.50 (trade price: £2.28 per 280g unit).
For further information, contact email@example.com or call 01548 550782.
St Austell reveal new keg portfolio
St Austell Brewery have unveiled their new keg brand portfolio, made up of Bath Ales and St Austell Brewery beers all now available in 30-litre kegs.
Included are three Bath Ale brands which have had a makeover in terms of branding and recipe tweaks to the Cubic and Monterey brands from the brewery team now headed by Georgina Young.
Brands making up the St Austell Family Group keg portfolio include: Monterey (3.9% ABV) – “an easy-going, easy-drinking California Pale Ale”; Cubic (4.5% ABV) – “pale ale precision”, Bounder’s (5.5% ABV) – Bath Ales’ cider brand, and one of St Austell’s flagship beers Proper Job IPA (4.5% ABV).
For more information call 0345 241 112 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Scotsman launches new large capacity ice machine
Hubbard has launched the latest in Scotsman’s MXG range of high volume ice machines. The MXG 938 is the biggest model in the range, producing up to 400kg of ice per day which, it is hoped, will keep up with the hospitality industry’s trend for using more ice than ever before.
The machine produces Scotsman’s gourmet ‘supercube’ ice cubes. Thimble-shaped and long lasting they don’t dilute drinks as much as traditional shapes.
Despite its capacity, the MXG 938 has a compact footprint and will be sited on top of a storage bin. The ice machine will be available for next day delivery, perfect if it’s a replacement purchase during a busy period.
The MXG range has list prices starting from £3,834 + VAT. The list price for the MXG 938 is £6,621 + VAT.
For more information and details of local stockists, freephone Hubbard Systems on 0800 616559, call 01473 350045, email email@example.com or visit www.scotsman-ice.co.uk.
New exec head chef for Gidleigh Park
Andrew Brownsword Hotels have announced the appointment of Chris Eden as executive head chef at Gidleigh Park.
He joins then from Driftwood in Cornwall where he was head chef for 12 years and won and retained a Michelin Star in 2012. Chris was also awarded a fourth AA rosette in 2018.
Andrew Brownsword Hotels statement said: “We are delighted to welcome Chris and are looking forward to him bringing his produce-led ethos to the kitchens of Gidleigh Park. His style, beautifully laced with touches of adventure and invention, creates refined plates where flavour is king. Chris’ passion for great produce is infectious, always handled with exceptional skill and care, and we are very much looking forward to enjoying his menus at Gidleigh Park”.
Chris Eden said: “Having grown up in the South West, to take up this role at Gidleigh Park is the stuff of childhood dreams. Gidleigh Park’s great team, beautiful setting and iconic reputation combine to make this such an exciting opportunity and I can’t wait to get started”.
South West Wine School ‘First of the Summer Wine’ event
13th June 2019, from 6pm
Deer Park Country House, near Honiton
“The evening will offer the chance for guests to taste wines from Lebanon, the Napa Valley in California, Alsace, South Africa and the SW of England alongside a smorgasbord of delicious food created by the chefs at this beautiful country house.”
For more information, please visit www.southwestwineschool.co.uk.
Food Drink Devon Summer Party
17th June 2019
6.30pm – 9.30pm
Dartington Hall Gardens, Totnes, Devon TQ9 6EL
“You are invited to join Food Drink Devon for our Summer Party. This is a fabulous excuse to celebrate the wonderful Devon food and drink businesses in this region.”
For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit –
Abel & Imray Food & Drink Brand Event
25th June 2019
4pm – 6.30pm
Yurt Lush, Bristol. BS1 6QH
“Come along and hear a panel discussion from experts in the food & drink sector, ask questions and network over a drink and nibbles with the panel and other food & drink businesses.”
To attend this free event, please register at https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/how-do-you-build-a-food-and-drink-brand-that-makes-an-impact-bristol-tickets-60520977874