A North East artisan food and drink retailer, which sources products from around the world and has amassed a following across the UK and beyond, is targeting expansion through a move to Grainger Street and the launch of its online shop.
mmm…and glug…was established in Newcastle in 2008 and has grown into one of the most highly-esteemed independent food and drink brands of its kind.
It attracts customers from across the country and earning name-checks in books by celebrity chefs, including Thomasina Miers.
The business, based in the city’s Grainger Market, has earned fame in foodie circles for its commitment to sourcing the highest quality produce from suppliers around the world.
It is now known for being the go-to place for the most unusual of ingredients, and has a loyal and sizeable following both among its customer base and on social media.
Run by Simone and Ian Clarkin, mmm…and glug… – which started out in 2008, is now moving to a two-floor 1,500 sq ft retail unit on nearby Grainger Street.
This will allow it to have its own shop front on one of Newcastle’s busiest streets and dictate its own opening hours.
The move comes at a time of development for the business, as it introduces a ‘click and collect’ service for customers and online mail order to allow it to look at international trade.
mmm…and glug…have also launched a range of its own-label spice mixes and cooking ingredients.
mmm…and glug…has been built by passionate foodies Simone and Ian, who have assembled a five-strong team who share their love of quality food and drink.
Simone’s background in sourcing fine food and wines from continental suppliers, coupled with Ian’s expertise in marketing – which has seen mmm…glug…named as one of the most influential independent businesses on Twitter – has proved a recipe for success.
Simone said: “This is a very exciting time for us, moving into our own shop on Grainger Street and having the freedom that comes with that is something we have wanted for some time.
“The Grainger Market has been a fantastic place to be, but we are delighted with the start of our new chapter.
“Our ethos is we source high-quality food and drink from independent producers wherever they are in the world, and strive to build long-term relationships with both our customers and suppliers.
“We do stock products from the North East and we source from Spain, Italy, France, America, we look across the whole world to get the quality we know our customers will want.”
Ian, who initially was ‘Saturday boy’ with mmm…glug…before joining his wife full time, said: “We have customers who come to us from as far afield as Liverpool and Manchester and even afield.
“Through the launch of online ordering in the near future we hope we will become accessible to people across the UK and even internationally.
“Our customers are fantastic and are the biggest advocates of what we do.
“Thomasina Miers first became aware of us when she remarked how difficult it was to find some cooking ingredients; one of our customers got in touch with her to tell her about us.
“Since then, she has mentioned us in her cookbooks and even held a book launch here.”
mmm…and glug…have been supported in its expansion by law firm Sintons, with Head of Licensing Sarah Smith and Laura Peace, Partner in the Real Estate team, both acting in the transaction.
Sarah Smith said: “Newcastle enjoys a reputation as a vibrant and diverse leisure venue which attracts people from across the whole UK.
“mmm…and glug…is another example of something special we have here which again puts the North East on a national scale.
“Its reputation for its quality and variety of produce is well known far beyond this region.
“And the platform it has created on social media has also helped it to stand out in the very competitive culinary marketplace.
“We wish Simone and Ian luck in their new home for mmm…and glug…on Grainger Street and every success as they continue to grow and develop the business.”
Pictured (courtesy of Sintons Law and David Wood Photographer above: left to right – Simone Clarkin; Sarah Smith and Laura Peace, Sintons and Ian Clarkin.
Want to know more before we move to Grainger Street?
Free events at mmm… and glug… (all from 1pm)
- Saturday, 3 June: Flashhouse Brewing meet the brewer – come and taste Jack O’Keefe’s latest North Shields-brewed ales, including his new chocolate coffee stout
- Saturday, 16 June: Firebrick Brewery meet the brewer – looking for a Father’s Day gift? Our Blaydon-based brewery will help you find the perfect bottles for him to enjoy.
- Patagonian wine tasting (date tbc)
- Summer fruit beer tasting (date tbc)
- Ooft! meet the maker – come and taste hot Scotch Bonnet pepper and smoky chipotle sauces (date tbc)
- Meet the Hogarth honey bees – come and meet 10,000 of our honey making bees and taste this year’s summer honey (date tbc)
- Click and collect at mmm… and glug… To find out more sign up for news below.