Today is our first birthday, here at 280 Bakes. We're so proud and pleased to have survived and thrived through to our first landmark birthday. Hooray for small business!
Over the last year we've gone from being porch sale cake stall to a bona fide company. So what have we achieved?
We held a coffee morning to celebrate all this with our 'friends of 280 Bakes' and our customers today, and here are the best photos from the event.
Thank you to all who came out to celebrate with us - here's to another year's baking!
The Team @ 280 Bakes
We have a very special offer on this month - hope you've seen it? We're giving every customer who orders a cake from us during May a £10 voucher towards a food tour with the Bristol Food Tour. Our hometown of Bristol is becoming oh-so-foodie, and we're celebrating that with these great business partners of ours. How awesome is that?!
Let's find out more about this local company, and the tours they run...
Hi Alice, great to have you on our blog!
Tell us, how did your team get together, and come up with the idea for tBFT?
We met through our boyfriends a few years ago and both clearly shared a love for great food! We had independently done food tours in India and New York which we really enjoyed and came home to Bristol wondering why such a foodie and walkable city didn't have a food tour. We didn't realise that we had both thought about the possibility of setting up a walking food tour until I announced I wanted to seriously consider it, and Jo said she would be excited to collaborate on such a unique-to-Bristol idea! We both bring different strengths to the business, plus our passion for this city, it's food culture and food generally!
What is your favourite kind of food?
Jo's favourite food changes all the time, but after returning from a three week holiday in Mexico, at the moment it's definitely freshly made soft veggie tacos, preferably with a fruity spicy salsa and a cold beer.
My favourite food is definitely peanut butter or cheese but I also absolutely love Italian and Korean food too. I'm off to Berlin next week so I'm excited to find out what delicious food is on offer there too!
How have you found Bristol for a small, new business?
We have found it absolutely amazing! There is such a huge network of independents, and everyone is so supportive of each other. Starting the venture was definitely daunting but we couldn't have asked for a better city to do it in. We want to celebrate the amazing independent food offering in Bristol and it's been such a privilege to do so, plus people like to support us too because we are a small local business too so it's worked really well.
Tell us about something new at tBFT?
We have just launched the Great Bristol Food Tour, a collaboration with Cycle The City. The idea is that it will be a city wide food tour... by bike! We'll be telling the customers information about the local area, the stories behind the businesses we visit, plus, of course, there will be lots of delicious food to sample along the way. The addition of cycling means that tour goers will definitely be hungry! Tickets cost £40 which includes bike hire and all of the food. We're hoping to run these tours once a month and places can be booked through the Cycle The City website.
Why do you think Bristol is a good location for your business?
There is so many options of places to visit for incredible food, and each area of the city is so different. The amount of independent restaurants, cafes, markets, food trucks and pop-ups far outshines the offer of chains in terms of both of quality and price. It makes us really proud of the city that we live in, and being able to share our favourite foodie hotspots with tour goers is a dream come true!
How did you find out about 280 Bakes?
When we were planning our first vegan food tour we were let down last minute on the promise of a cake for our tour goers to nibble along their walk. A friend suggested we called on 280 Bakes to save the day and you most definitely did. Your Chocolate Peanut Butter cake has been a firm favourite on our vegan tours ever since!
What's the future for tBFT?
We're hoping to expand across the whole of Bristol and be running tours right throughout the city. We'd also like to be running more bespoke, private and corporate tours during the week, and continue to work on exciting collaborations and events with other independent businesses. We're so passionate about food that we'd love to organise more foodie events which are different from our tours so watch this space! All of our current and upcoming tours and projects can be found on our website.
Thanks Alice, so great to hear more about your business. Here's to a busy touring and 'caking' summer!
The Team @ 280 Bakes
The weekend just gone (14th May 2017) seems longer ago than 'just gone' - so much has been going on since then for us.... A fresh spell of baker recruitment, day job baking, events organisation... We'd planned this blog post for earlier but it's just not been possible! Small business is rockin'! Anyway... Here we go!
Sunday was the Wiltshire Vegan Festival! Of course, we went along with our cakes and met the lovely people of Chippenham (in the main). This was the second festival of its kind in Chippenham, and it looks set to return again later in the year, due to the success - yay! Stay tuned into our newsletter to find out when the next one is.
Here are some of the choice pictures from our day at the Wiltshire Vegan Festival.
Photos are as follows...
Top line: Our bestseller: Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake, customer joy from Alexandra, and a special for the festival: Chocolate Raspberry Cake
Middle line: Happy faces of young fans of 280 Bakes, two photos of our Twix inspired shortbread - the first to sell out.
Bottom line: Some smaller bakes: Lemon Drizzle, Chocolate Cupcake (gluten free), Chocolate Hedgehog cakes, a Black Forest cupcake, and a photo of Marlon - a very enthusiastic customer!
If you click on the images they should load a little bigger if they're not too clear right now.
Thank you to MarlondonDJ and LaChicaVeganaOficial (Instagram accounts) and the family of cupcake lovers for allowing us to take their photos.
Find out more about the Wiltshire Vegan Festival on their Facebook page - see you at the next one!
The Team @ 280 Bakes
Our customers are all about good food (and quite rightly so!). With this in mind, we've paired up with the Bristol Food Tour (tBFT) this month to give our customers free vouchers to put towards an amazing foodie city walking tour with tBFT.
How do I get hold of a Bristol Food Tour voucher?
Simply order a cake from us during May, and we'll drop round a voucher for you when we deliver your cake. Vouchers are limited to one per order. Tours must be booked for dates between May and the end of August. Please contact the Bristol Food Tour for any specific queries or bookings. Bespoke tours for birthdays or team 'away days' can be arranged.
Tell me more about tBFT...
The ladies who set up the Bristol Food Tour company in 2016 were inspired by foreign city food tours in India and the USA. They caught the bug, and have made a successful business from the idea right here in Bristol. The unique tours the team currently offer are vegan ones, the original Stokes Croft tour, Southville area, and 'South of the River' tours, with more themes to come later this year. The tours include stories about the local area and Bristol's history, an introduction to the city's independent food scene and - most importantly - sampling some of the finest food & drink the city has to offer. Hen Dos have proven a popular customer base, and you definitely get value for money, with around 10 eating establishments sampled over each tour
Some recent reviews...
Tegan: Such a fun family day out, Jo was a fantastic tour guide, and even though I have lived in Bristol for about 6 years now, there were plenty of places I had never even thought to go to! The value for money is superb- endless treats.. Couldn't believe how much we squeezed into 3 hours!
Jenni: Can't recommend it enough and I think it would be a perfect idea for a team trip or to kick off a hen weekend!
Anthony: Whether you're staying in Bristol for any length of time or you're a local, if you like your food then this is a must to do activity!
We love St Patrick's Day - any excuse for a Chocolate Guinness Cake!
These photos are from some of our day of Irish inspired baking: Suzanne's thumb is in the photo above, an Irish customer in Bristol who enjoyed her cake (clearly!).
The photo to the left is from the charity fundraiser in Sea Mills we donated a Chocolate Guinness cake to. Thanks John for being our model! Over £170 was raised at the St Patrick's race night, and we were happy to be able to donate a cake to the cause.
Roll on next year!
The Team @ 280 Bakes
The title says it all.
Our cake special for St Patrick's Day (Friday) is Chocolate Guinness Cake.
Use the promo code "blog17" to get 10% off!
Orders close 5pm Thursday 16th March, deliveries following day in Bristol and Portishead only. Also available for gluten free and vegan diets. £12, including delivery.
If you miss the order deadline, we are donating a Chocolate Guinness Cake to the Race Night Fundraiser in Sea Mills on Friday. Come early to guarantee a slice for a donation!
The Team @ 280 Bakes
We won our very first award yesterday, and we're so proud!
Held in Bristol every February (happily and not so coincidentally run during Fairtrade Fortnight), is the South West Fairtrade Business Awards. And, you guessed it, we won an award this year!
We entered into the category of 'Single Product Retailer' with our now famous low fat and Fairtrade Banana Loaf, a long-time customer favourite. It was fantastic to received the bronze award, alongside other strong, large and worthy businesses.
Thank you to Bristol Cathedral for allowing the ceremony to be held inside the church, and of course, thank you to Fairtrade Bristol for running the show and providing a delicious veggie lunch.
Find out more about the Fairtrade movement on our recent blog 'It's Fairtrade Fortnight!'
Hey... we're award winners!!!
(A very excited) Team @ 280 Bakes
This Saturday, 280 Bakes will be out in Bristol litter picking to help improve the state of the street our HQ is located in. This is part of a community scheme called the 'Great British Spring Clean', run by Keep Britain Tidy. Community groups, workplaces, schools and individuals can sign up to litter pick a street near them, and to promote a healthy, clean neighbourhood.
Read more about the 'Great British Spring Clean' here.
You're invited to join us - and there will be free cupcakes for the first 12 people! Find out more about our event here, along with other forthcoming events you can join us for.
Saturday 4th March, 2-3pm
Meeting at the junction of Stile Acres and Broadlands Drive
Please bring hi-vis jackets if you have them, and hard-wearing gloves. Children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Bin bags will be provided.
See you there!
The Team @ 280 Bakes
Already, it's March, and with it comes Fairtrade Fortnight, an annual campaign to raise awareness of the good work the Fairtrade Foundation does.
We love it - all the more reason to get baking our famous* low fat and Fairtrade Banana Loaf! In fact, all of our banana cakes (including banana coconut, gluten free banana cake, vegan banana cake) use Fairtrade bananas. Feel the goodness!
Our bakers also use Fairtrade cocoa, sugar, chocolate on request, but our banana loaves are where you're guaranteed to have a taste of fairly traded fruit.
*in Bristol, anyway!
So, what is Fairtrade?
"Trade between companies in developed countries and producers in developing countries in which fair prices are paid to the producers". Oxford Dictionaries.
What kind of products are included?
Fairtrade products can be everything from chocolate to tea, coffee to sugar, cocoa, wine, dried fruit and bananas (hence our banana cakes). As you can see, it's often crops grown in tropical nations, but you can also get Fairtrade gold and Easter eggs. Have a look at the supermarket shelves next time you pop in - you may be surprised what you can buy to help promote fair price trading for the developing world.
There are over 4,500 products!
Why do we need Fairtrade?
Small farmers and workers who grow our hot drinks, breakfasts, lunches and teas often don't get the money they deserve for their crops. They can suffer because of this and it can lock them into a cycle of poverty. When world commodity prices fall, as they have done over the last 30 years, It's these growers who feel the pinch first. Their income can drop to levels that don't even cover production costs, making it hard to provide for their families and maintain their farms.
As consumers we have the power to change things, and the power to make a difference to growers and workers in the southern hemisphere.
For more information, visit the Fairtrade Foundation website.
The Team @ 280 Bakes
Welcome to the 280 Bakes blog! Most posts are by our team, but if you fancy guest blogging, give us a shout!