A lovely Cotswold set – celebrating provenance and partnerships.

A lovely Cotswold set – celebrating provenance and partnerships.

This month sees us celebrating a Cotswold partnership in the most civilised way possible, with a nice cup of tea and a delicious piece of cake – made from Matthews Cotswold Flour!

You might have read about the Chipping Norton set in the media, since previous prime minister David Cameron and celebrity Jeremy Clarkson both live nearby, and are friends with a few other famous folk round here. But I’m talking about something a lot more quaint and charming than them  – the Tea Set tea rooms in the Cotswold towns of Chipping Norton and Broadway, run by Victoria Wills.

Victoria Wills’ business was voted Best Wedding Caterer in The Cotswolds and Mark’s Cotswold Bakery won three awards at the World Bread Awards 2018. So when Mark’s bread became available in The Tea Set, used in all the tea rooms delicious sourdough sandwiches, and our Cotswold flour used to bake their scrumptious freshly baked cakes, we thought it was time to celebrate!

Mark and Victoria both talk about the importance of quality, artisan ingredients as part of their high standards and success:

“Flour is everything in my sourdough,” said Mark. He continues:

“All my sourdough loaves are made with only flour, water, chia seeds and a little bit of salt. There is nowhere to hide. It’s all about the quality of the flour.  I truly believe that the combination of the stoneground process, lack of over processing and incredibly high-grade grain makes a huge difference to my sourdough. It really is an essential component of my award-winning loaf.”

Ensuring a quality product and local provenance is so important to us at Matthews Cotswold Flour. We try to use as much premium grade grain as possible from local Oxfordshire farmers, and our flour has one of the smallest transport footprints in the UK.  Last year, wheat grown in fields above the mill in the Evenlode valley travelled just 500 metres before being ground into flour and bagged at the mill. 

Although early signs are that it will be another high-quality harvest in the Cotswolds this year, the UK doesn’t produce enough wheat grain to meet the nation’s need for flour, and premium high protein wheat grain from places such as Canada and is also milled and crafted into flour blends here.  All our flours receive the same high quality milling and blending which is recognised in the trade.

Victoria Wills said: 

“As both a baker and restauranteur I know that the quality of ingredients can make or break not only a cake or meal, but also the local reputation of an establishment. We knew early on that we wanted to be known for our simple, yet reliably delicious menu choices, and I really believe that using Matthews Cotswold Flour has enabled us to offer some of the very best cakes, sandwiches and breakfasts in the Cotswolds.”

If you’re visiting Chipping Norton or Broadwaytea rooms make sure you pop in to buy some of Mark’s bread and have a cup of tea and cake!

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