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The French–style bakery has created a premium pizza using a base from focaccia bread and conventional pizza dough that’s topped with brie, red onions, and Mediterranean vegetables. The first of the new pizza range has recently gone on sale in Northern Ireland stores at £4.95.
The pizza has been handcrafted by Franck Brétéché, an experienced French chef who owns the successful Mange Tout restaurant/deli at Downpatrick in county Down.
“We’ve been baking focaccia bread for many years and it’s now among our most popular products with customers,” he says. “The decision to use this as a base is the outcome of our focus on developing innovative and different products to expand our retail business and increase awareness of the Mange Tout brand.
“We’ve already won good business with our game and fruit pies as well as our fruit breads,” adds Mr Brétéché, who has lived in Northern Ireland for over 20 years and runs the business with wife Tina.
“We decided to move into handmade luxury pizzas because pizzas are such a popular and convenient meal but we wanted to create a premium and handmade product, one that has different rich flavours. So, I decided to create an innovative pizza base topped with brie and Mediterranean vegetables. And it’s proving to be tremendously popular with customers because of the different ingredients and outstanding taste,” he adds.
Other pizza flavours are in the pipeline using ingredients from other local artisan suppliers.
Mr Brétéché gained his culinary/bakery qualifications at a college near his family home in Nantes and working in restaurants there. He subsequently worked in Northern Ireland with top chefs such as Paul Rankin and Simon Dougan.
Experience gained working alongside the two chefs led Mr Brétéché to set up his own restaurant/deli/patisserie outside Downpatrick. “Setting up my own French–style café in Northern Ireland had been a dream for a number of years,” he says.
“I wanted to work with the superb local ingredients readily available here and use my experience from back home in France to create a different menu with premium products that would include some of the foods popular in Nantes and other parts of the Loire region. We’ve now moved on to the creation on different branded products for retail, all handcrafted.
“Our focus is on making and selling top–quality artisan dishes – meat, bread, desserts, and luxury food – to the public and a small, select group of wholesale customers.”
Catering services are also provided for weddings and other events. He runs monthly bistro nights serving gourmet dishes. The small company has, in addition, become popular at farmers’ markets across Northern Ireland.Back to all news
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Cunningham’s Butchers and Food Hall in Northern Ireland has been named “UK Butchers Shop of the Year 2017” at a major event in Britain. The family–owned and managed business, which is based at Kilkeel in county Down, won the coveted title at the Farm Shop and Deli Awards in Birmingham this week.
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