The Fine Food Company
“It’s pretty simple stuff what we do but what we start with is sourcing really good quality food, and that includes drink. If you start with really good basic ingredients then you’ve got half a chance of providing something really great and that’s a real passion of mine.”
In just over ten years, The Fine Food Company has built a solid reputation for its ingredient-led focus. From burgers and hog roasts to tea and hot dogs, Managing Director, Robert Tame’s philosophy in getting the basics right has led to the operator becoming a respected name in casual dining and event catering, successfully running sites at St. Pancras, King’s Cross Station and ExCel Exhibition Centre, as well as catering at an eclectic mix of venues and events including the London 2012 Olympics, Chelsea Flower Show, The Oval and Glastonbury.
With this in mind, Robert approached Taylors of Harrogate when it came to supporting Fine Burger Co.’s breakfast menu at St. Pancras, which currently makes up 14% of the brand’s weekly sales.
“There’s been a complete demise in London of the traditional ‘caf’ – it doesn’t exist anymore. ‘Cafs’ have been taken over by coffee shops, and we felt there was still a demand for that kind of start to the day – an honest breakfast and a mug of tea.”
“We’d seen Taylors of Harrogate at Camp Bestival with Yorkshire Tea and all their activity around the Ashes and being the Official Brew of England Cricket. There was a synergy and not only in terms of the taste and the flavour but also what Yorkshire Tea and Taylors of Harrogate stand for; their British heritage is really important to us. Plus,” adds Robert, “I’m a big tea drinker and I like my tea strong – I’ve always been a Yorkshire Tea fan and we drink it at home.”
Working closely with Taylors of Harrogate, Robert introduced Yorkshire Tea branding within the restaurants including branded mugs and tea pots. “We wanted to support our breakfasts with something that had a bit more personality than just ‘tea’. Yorkshire Tea is a powerful brand and it gives us a point of difference. We use the tea pots for decorative purposes and serve tea in Yorkshire Tea mugs. There’s that brand reassurance to customers that they’re getting good quality – I like to walk in there in the morning and see people holding a mug of Yorkshire Tea.”
The partnership is certainly brewing up a profit for the Fine Food Company, with tea sales growing by 10% in the last 6 months. Tea has now become the best-selling hot drink at the St Pancras site. “Customers prefer Yorkshire Tea. It’s a brand that people know, and it stands for quality and a full-flavoured brew. My instinct and my gut feeling says that it tips people to think, ‘Oh it’s Yorkshire Tea – I’m going to have a tea rather than a coffee.’”
So would Robert recommend Taylors of Harrogate to other operators?
“Definitely, the Taylors team has been really proactive. The crux is they’ve got a good product, heritage and the brand has a depth that a lot of people can relate to. If you are looking for quality and good value, Yorkshire Tea ticks the box.”