Fudge Kitchen celebrates 35th birthday
Lyminge-based Fudge Kitchen celebrates its 35th birthday with a £100k facelift that focuses on the personality of its wonderfully quirky brand, with a full interior and exterior rebranding of its seven shops in Bath, Edinburgh, Cambridge, Canterbury, Oxford, Windsor and York.
There are new packaging-reduced boxes and recyclable bags that help to save the planet whilst enjoying a laugh (Does my Fudge Look Big in This …?).
The Fudge Kitchen website is also undergoing a makeover and will be launched afresh in the summer of 2018. uk
It is 35 years since the first Fudge Kitchen opened its doors, introducing an American concept of fresh whipping cream fudge, made to an authentic 1830s recipe. Introducing the pioneering concept of ‘retail theatre’, the shops still hand make fudge in full view of the customer, using traditional techniques involving copper cauldrons of bubbling fudge, poured onto marble and ‘loafed and stabbed’ using huge spatulas to turn the cooling fudge and achieve that renowned FK creaminess.
It was risky. High-end, gift chocolate had a place in consumer comprehension, but fudge? Fudge made by true artisans, using only the finest ingredients? Fudge that did not come in a box with a kitten on the front? Fudge that was soft, fresh and smooth …?
The first major refit of Fudge Kitchen shops in 2007 was all about educating the consumer to this potential and reflecting that premium positioning, drawing on the design language of the luxury chocolate sector. After 35 years of educating the market, in total, Fudge Kitchen’s new rebrand is about communicating the collective, big personality and values of the company.
“We have successfully repositioned and educated people that fudge, done properly, with natural and good quality ingredients can be something rather special and spectacular,” says MD Sian Holt. “Fudge Kitchen has grown-up and now is the time to let our own, very unique personality and strong brand shine through in its own right. Quirky straplines and design features reflect the group personality of the fudge family, and lighter-brighter colours let the hero of the piece, our fudge, stand out on a fresh, cotemporary stage all of its own.”
Fudge Kitchen started as Jim Garrahy’s Fudge Kitchen in Blackpool in 1983. In 1995, the company was bought by MD Sian Holt, who expanded the Fudge Kitchen retail side into seven thriving shops in Bath, York, Cambridge, Canterbury, Windsor, Edinburgh and Oxford. The brand was steered into a new, exciting wholesale phase with the development in 2012 of the ‘Devilishly Different’ Gourmet Fudge range. Still using the finest, natural ingredients, handmade and hand decorated by an artisan staff in their new dedicated production facility in Aylesham, Kent, but now with an extended shelf life of 18 months. The company now exports to over 20 countries from France to the Falkland Islands and has also moved into the food service, own label, corporate and hospitality sectors.
The 90 plus strong range of products includes Drinking Fudge, Fudge Sauces, Gift Hampers, Dipped Sticks, themed selections of miniatures, Fudge Fondues, Sliders, Sharing Squares, Fudge Making kits and the Delectables range of Brittles, Barks and Caramels; and a menu of some 40 flavours. All are available online at www.fudgekitchen.co.uk and selected lines are available through over 200 stockists nationwide including Selfridges, Waitrose, Lakeland, Finebox, Fenwicks, Adnams and independent speciality shops around the UK. Fudge Kitchen is also proud to supply some of the UK’s most luxurious hotels and Wembley Stadium events; and to make own label fudge products for Selfridges and Whittard’s of Chelsea, amongst others.
Fudge Kitchen is proud to have received 15 Great Taste Awards in 2010, 2011, 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2017 for their Rich Chocolate & Orange Fudge, Penuche Fudge, Double Trouble Fudge, Peanut Butter Fudge, Sticky Toffee Pudding Gourmet Fudge, Hazelnut Heaven Gourmet Fudge, Sea Salted Caramel Fudge, Juniper & Kaffir Lime Dry Gin Fudge, Butterscotch Fudge Sauce, Stem Ginger Fudge, Almond Bark, Peanut Brittle, sugar free Peanut Brittle and sugar free Salted Caramels.
The company has also been named Ambient Manufacturing Company of the Year at the 2014/15 industry Oscars, the Food Manufacturing Excellence awards.
MD Sian Holt has herself has previously been awarded a Special Award for Leadership and Vision by Produced in Kent and listed in the Kent Business Power List of 40 most influential business leaders in Kent.
Fudge Kitchen supplies its products direct, but also exports through European distributors Bommel in Holland, Der Suesse Regenbogen and Piccadilly Purveyors of Fine Food in New Zealand.
Read our Fudge Kitchen Success Story