Henrietta Kitt started the award winning Hetty’s Tea Party in 2011 out of a desire to share her love of all things tea and cake and revive the Great British art of the afternoon tea! Her tried and tested recipes were developed by attending markets throughout Gloucestershire and listening to feedback direct from the customers until she felt like she perfected a menu that gave the people what they wanted.
From a family of producers, Hetty’s Grandparents taught her the importance of supporting local and responsible farms, believing this is a great way to get some of the best and freshest ingredients around. She often uses ingredients that Gloucester Services stock, such as Netherend Farm Butter and Overton Organic Eggs. Hetty knows that good ingredients create the tastiest cakes possible and she believes it’s much healthier too. It’s the same way Hetty’s Nanny bakes and eats and she’s 90, so she must be doing something right!
We began working with Hetty in May 2016 after our Buyer, Nicky, discovered the brownies at a local food market.
Nicky said, “I was really impressed by the quality and the consistency of the product. They’re a big hit with customers and colleagues too!”
When Hetty began producing brownies for Gloucester Services she was still baking in her kitchen.
She explained for us, “I was baking everything by myself from home in a kitchen not much bigger than your average garden shed. My first order was for 4 flavours totalling 240 brownies per week.”
Brownies are always a favourite and Hetty’s went down a storm in our Farmshop.
She continued, “By the second week the order had doubled and May bank holiday weekend I had to add 2 extra emergency deliveries as they sold so well! We soon outgrew the kitchen, and then my dining room and when it started to take over the living room we decided I needed to move production out of home to a commercial kitchen! Each batch is still made in the same way though, in standard domestic kitchen mixers as we believe using smaller batches keep the quality high and consistent and handmade. ”
By the summer of 2017 Hetty had a small team of three bakers and a book keeper to help her.
“Orders continue to grow month on month and supplying Gloucester Services has also helped sales in other areas. People recognise us at farmers markets and people often tell me that they discovered my brownies before at Gloucester Services and loved them. They then go on to take a whole box home!”
To celebrate autumn, Hetty’s produced some limited edition flavours including her very special S’mores brownie. Topped with gooey marshmallow, it’s perfect for a sweet treat this Bonfire night. Find them on the cake table in our Farmshop at Gloucester Services now.