Harrogate confectioner crafts unique good luck message for cycling star

1 July 2014

The Harrogate master confectioners behind the recently launched Ultimate English traditional sweet range have crafted a unique, coconut ice ‘lemon jersey’ to wish cycling champion Mark Cavendish sweet success ahead of the opening stage of Le Grand Départ.

In celebration of the Tour De France coming to Yorkshire, the Ultimate English team have launched a limited edition range inspired by the age-old Anglo-French rivalry, which will be on sale at the event. ‘Tingling Rhubarb Coconut Ice’ and ‘Luxurious Clotted Cream Fudge’ are pitched against ‘Soft Crème Caramel Fudge’ and ‘Tangily Tarte au Citron Coconut Ice’ – used to create the 24lb ‘bonne chance’ jersey for Cav.
Handmade from special edition ‘Tarte au Citron’ coconut ice, the Ultimate English team spent more than eight hours creating the full size jersey for Le Tour’s most decorated sprint finisher, who has close links with his mother’s home town and who has been vocal about his desire to win the first day finish on Harrogate’s Stray.

Launched earlier this year to Yorkshire independent retailers, Ultimate English is a new range of premium confectionery designed to celebrate traditional childhood favourites from rich butter fudge and toffee to brittles, honeycombs and coconut ice. The core range and Tour de France special edition packs are now available in more than 80 farm shops, delis, attractions and cafes across the county, with plans for national expansion in 2015.

Managing Director of The Serious Sweet Company, Rob Whitehead, said: Hosting the first two stages of the Tour de France is a fantastic opportunity for Yorkshire to showcase all of the many things which make the region such a fantastic place and its diverse range of food and drink producers is absolutely at the heart of that.

We’ve made fudge from our Harrogate home since 1843 so we thought what better way to mark Le Grand Départ coming to Yorkshire than by producing a special edition range which celebrates the famous Anglo-French rivalry? The Ultimate English brand is all about high quality, delicious taste and most importantly having some fun along the way – three things embodied in our cross-channel taste sensation special editions.

As a competitor closely linked to our region, we wanted to (quite literally!) give Mark Cavendish a taste of some seriously sweet Yorkshire good luck with the lemon coconut ice jersey. We also hope it will give him the sugar rush he needs to win the yellow jersey here in Harrogate!

Ultimate English is the first independently branded product to be launched by The Serious Sweet Company, which alongside sister company Confection by Design produces own-brand products and ingredients for some of the UK’s leading retailers including Marks & Spencer, Harrods, Tesco and Asda.

In 2013, The Serious Sweet Company sold more than £2m of traditional English confectionery, marking an increase of 17% on the previous year. The Ultimate English range is initially being piloted to independent retailers, cafes and delis across Yorkshire, with over 80 stockists already confirmed. A national rollout of the brand is scheduled for later in 2014.

The Ultimate English range will be on sale at the official Le Tour Yorkshire Harrogate Fan Park Foodies Festival from 3rd – 6th July, West Park Stray, Harrogate.

Main photograph: L-R Serious Sweet Company MD Rob Whitehead and Product Manager Jane Holmes with the jersey

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