Published in Feast issue 44 – March 2020
Who are you and what do you do? I’m Mark Richmond, owner of the Nelson and Norfolk Tea Company. I love Norfolk and I love tea, so what better name to give my business?
Where are you based? I’m based in the village of Bradfield in between North Walsham and Cromer. Its rural position is always an appeal to me!
How did you get started? My 25 years’ experience as a Tea Master includes time spent in Harrods and Fortnum & Mason tea departments and further training with Whittard of Chelsea, www.whittard.co.uk, before moving to Yorkshire to train as a commercial tea taster and blender. On moving to Norfolk in 2012, I noticed the county needed a proper tea company and N&N was born.
What is it about tea that appeals? Do you do coffee as well? I believe tea is not just an ordinary beverage but that taking tea should be a pleasurable and mindful experience and worth taking time over. Tea is still the nation’s favourite brew and more popular than ever. I also offer a selection of great tasting, slow batch roasted coffee from a roaster in Norwich.
Tell us a little bit about your range of hand-crafted tea. As a tea smith, I’m potty about tea but, just like anything though, there are varying levels of quality available on the market. My business brings you the very best in hand-crafted tea to be found anywhere. With my many years in the tea industry, I have created beautiful tea blends, sourced quality leaf teas, and introduced some amazing fruit teas and herbal tisanes. These are created to perfection and are designed to make you feel good, cup after cup.
Any new blends you can tell us about? Yes, I have launched, in association with Crush Foods, a brand-new stand-alone product: Norfolk Tea. Our newly released product is the result of more than a year’s tasting and blending different origin teas to produce a great tasting everyday cuppa. The recyclable box contains 40 traditional square tea bags which are sealed inside a biodegradable plastic bag to keep the tea fresh.
Where can readers find your tea? My tea can be found across the region in delis, stores, tea rooms, cafés, and pubs. Customers can buy the full range of teas and coffees from my online shop.
What’s this we hear about a Tea Club? All my personal customers who order online receive special offers and discounts on my products. I have many loyal customers and The Tea Club is my way of saying thank you to them.
Any future plans you would like to share with us?Yes, this March my business is going into year six, wow! I never dreamed it would do so well, but the next chapter involves opening a Nelson and Norfolk Tea Room showcasing the very best tea and Proudly Norfolk produce. It’s just difficult finding the right location but I hope it happens.
How has Proudly Norfolk been able to help you? Proudly Norfolk is an invaluable resource for a small business owner. Not only is it a great ambassador for this county’s finest products, but I’ve made some very good friends along the way. It’s good to know PN is always there to support and advise.
The next Proudly Norfolk food festival is on April 19 in and around The Forum, Norwich, from 10am-4pm. Admission is free
This column is supported by Proudly Norfolk Food & Drink and highlights its members. For more details, visit www.proudlynorfolk.co.uk