Thursday, 28 January 2016
Wednesday, 27 January 2016
Thursday, 21 January 2016
My partner and I are big film fans and spend a lot of our time going to the cinema or watching movies at home, with the amount of popcorn we consume it doesn't take long to become bored of the limited variety that is on the market, this lead us to making our own and discovering the world of gourmet popcorn which is huge in the USA. After months of making it for us I thought that if we liked it, friends and family loved it, then maybe there is market for it here in Scotland. I booked a market stall at Loch Lomond shores Farmers market, (a market we still attend today) we sold out, picked up a few stockists and the rest is history!
What’s the best piece of business advice you could give?
Perseverance, we have had some really tough moments over the last year, many of which made me want to give up, but working through the problems one by one and not giving up, even when there is no light at the end of tunnel, is key to any business.
Where would you like to see your business in 5 years time?
Selling our popcorn throughout the UK and exporting, there are lots of opportunities on the horizon and with such a versatile product I think the company is too young to force it down any particular path just yet, for now we will keep growing, developing the brand and see where wind takes us
If you could only produce one of your popcorn flavours, what would it be & why?
Easy! It would have to be the Isle of Skye Sea Salt Caramel flavour! This was our first collaboration with another Scottish company, I absolutely love the product and it really helped get us noticed at a very early stage, securing some key listings that I don't think we would have got without the collaboration. (They have since gone on to collaborate with Arbikie Highland Estate to make a quirky Gin & Tonic flavour popcorn too)
You can invite one person (living or dead) to your last meal – Who would it be and why? …and what’s on the menu?
My dinner guest would be my Bamp (Granddad or Papa as he would be called in Scotland or England). It would be so nice to see him so he could see what myself and my dad have gone on to do, both living in Scotland running food companies that people love. (Daman's dad is the owner of Summer Harvest Oils)On the menu would be an omelette, and he'd be cooking! Nobody can beat his omelettes. I guess it's a Welsh thing?
Tuesday, 19 January 2016
Celebrate the Bard at Scotland’s oldest brewery
The Tennent’s Visitor Centre will prove to be well versed in more than just beer this weekend, as it opens its doors for a special Burns Night edition of its popular brewery tour.
On the 24th January and 25th of January, guests will be able to raise a poetic pint of Tennent’s Lager to Scotland’s national poet, following a tour of the iconic brewery.
The tour will finish in the Tennent’s Training Academy where all will be treated to a dram and a taster of locally sourced haggis, neeps and tatties.
A Whisky Ambassador will be on hand during the whisky tasting, which will also include an opportunity to sample Tennent’s acclaimed beer aged with Whisky Oak
Said Visitor Centre Manager Ross Pollock, “We were brewing on this very spot when Burns was writing his best loved works, and it’s only fitting for us to host a celebration of our nation’s greatest poet. He’s known for enjoying a whisky, so naturally we’ll serve a dram in addition to our usual tour, which is a fun and fascinating look behind the scenes of Scotland’s favourite pint. ”
Events will be held at 12pm, 2pm, 4pm and 6pm on the 24th of January, and 6pm and 8pm on the 25th. Tickets cost £15 each and must be purchased in advance online at http://tennentstrainingacademy.co.uk/leisure.
Monday, 11 January 2016
This is the Official Invite for the Great British Cook Book Vol 2
Last year’s book gained the support of some of the finest chefs across the country
The team behind the book are not just looking for Michelin Star, Rosette venues but local restaurants with passion and flare for great food using wonderful local produce where possible
The Great British Cookbook will take you on an unforgettable journey through 200 of the UK’s most prestigious pubs, guest houses, hotels, AA Rosette and Michelin Star restaurants showcasing 200 of the UK’s finest chefs who have created 200 culinary masterpieces using locally sourced produce; for you to cook with your family and friends in your home. If all this wasn’t enough this online cookbook is your very own road map of exceptional places to eat.
All participants receive 2 pages like the pages below with a recipe of either a Starter, Main or Dessert
Every Restaurant and chef involved receive an official letter from the book and the charities and a certificate of entry.
Book goes on general sale in the summer of 2016.
Closing date for entries and copy no later than 28th of April 2016 (60% of the book is already filled but that still means there is plenty of space for creative chefs to get their own recipes published!)
Saturday, 9 January 2016
February - with the cold winter biting hard, I found this great recipe that I've served up so many times since.
March - thanks to a great value Itison deal, we enjoyed a great lunch at Ian Brown Food & Drink.
April - a busy month with Glasgow seeing the opening of Gusto plus a trip to London which included a fantastic Sunday roast dinner at Marcus Wareing's The Gilbert Scott and a great repeat visit to Jason Atherton's Pollen Street Social.
June - after our trip to Birmingham, we had a quite month at home. This quick and easy recipe was perfect for the early summer evenings.
July - this was a month of invitations starting with a visit to Thornton Hall Hotel & Spa in the Wirral to try out Matt Worswick's The Lawns Restaurant before heading to the Heverlee @ Tontine pop up where I won a trip to Belgium! (More on that in the coming weeks)
August - one of my most read posts of last year was the 5 Questions post featuring the 2015 Masterchef Winner Simon Wood. This was followed by a birthday dinner at Restaurant Mark Greenaway then we celebrated out 5th wedding anniversary by staying over at Hilton Glasgow with dinner at Morblas Seafood & Grill.
September - anything to do with Masterchef always has high readership and the 5 Questions post with the 2015 runner up Tony Rodd was no different. Whilst on holiday in Lanzarote we sampled some of the best food and drink that the island has to offer when we visited the Feria de la Tapa.
October - after returning from holiday, we had a quitter month although did manage a great lunch at The Finnieston.
November - some great chefs have answered 5 Questions in the past and November seen one of the world's most recognised chefs, Michel Roux Jr throw his hat on the ring! We ended the month with our first visit to the 2 AA Rosette restaurant, The Gannet (review to follow)
Friday, 8 January 2016
Buying may be the main activity at Scotland’s Speciality Food Show in just over two week’s time (24-26 Jan) but the range and topics of the talks and workshops in the Seminar Theatre will give buyers many top tips on how to improve and increase business.
This year the Show has secured the official Google training team, Garage Digital, who will give talks each day on how to reach new customers and how to tell your story online. Their practical advice gives quick and easy hints at improving your online presence. Complementing this will be a few social media seminars on using this essential marketing tool to boost retail business.
Attracting customers into your deli, farm shop or fine food outlet and improving footfall is a perennial task. The John Lewis Visual Merchandising Manager will be delivering a presentation on merchandising and shop window techniques – given John Lewis’s recent Christmas sales success we all know it works here so can work for you too.
The Giftware Association’s Vice Chair will deliver Top Tips for independent shops and along with one of Scotland’s most experienced PR gurus, (currently Group Head of Comms for Macdonald Hotels), who will give advice on creating personality in the retail world, there will no shortage of useful, interesting and hands-on information for visitors to glean.
And if this leaves you gasping leading coffee experts Brodies of Edinburgh are giving a Coffee Masterclass on creating that perfect coffee.
If this isn’t good enough reason to visit then our line-up of exhibitors certainly is. With a bigger than ever Food Show, with almost a half of all exhibitors new to the Show, and a very varied and original Launch Gallery for new young companies, there is certainly a fresh, new flavour to the Show.
To ensure you get free entry, remember to register now at: http://www.scotlandsspecialityfoodshow.com/
Tuesday, 5 January 2016
Two great venues, one awesome deal! After the incredibly popular Butchershop pop-up in The 158 last October, the team at Butchershop Bar & Grill and Hutchesons have decided to give their wonderful customers a little January treat by launching a Rusk Company favourite in The 158 this month. Burger vs Steak Frites is now available every Monday to Wednesday throughout the whole month, EXCLUSIVELY in The 158 Café Bar!
For just £30 you can enjoy TWO Hutchesons burgers, TWO dry aged rump steaks... OR mix them up and have one of each! Served with skinny fries and a bottle of house wine to share.
Call 0141 552 4050 to make your reservation. Offer only valid in The 158 Café Bar.
CHATEAU THURSDAYS... NOW WITH ADDED TOMAHAWK!!!
Hutchesons regulars know that Thursdays are all about their mouthwatering Chateaubriand Experience in the Grand Brasserie. You may not have thought it could get any more delicious... but that's where you were wrong my good friend.
To celebrate the start of another incredible year at Hutchesons, they are now adding the most celebratory of all steaks to their Chateaubriand Thursday menu. That's right, for only £10 per couple you can upgrade to the famous, 1.2kg 45-day dry aged TOMAHAWK steak. The usual rules apply, simply choose your cut:
OPTION 1 - 35 day dry aged CHATEAUBRIAND PLUS 2 sides + 2 sauces + a bottle of house wine = £60 for two
OPTION 2 - 45 day dry aged TOMAHAWK PLUS 2 sides + 2 sauces + a bottle of house wine = £70 for two*
Call 0141 552 4050 to book and remember to quote 'TOMAHAWK' when making your reservation to avoid disappointment.
*Subject to availability.