“You have to visit The Pudding Parlour” we were told by many on our arrival in Prudhoe.
Now we have, and we chatted to co-owner Kristy while we were there.
PB: Tell us about The Pudding Parlour…
KG: We’ve been in business for ten year this November. We’re a brother and sister ownership team and have a fabulous team of 16 bakers and cake decorators. It all started with a love of baking and we opened our first store in Hexham in 2013. Over the last ten years, our business has changed from predominately consumer sales, through retail outlets, to now largely trade supply.
Although we now supply around 50 businesses across the North of England with our goodies, we do still sell to the public. But rather than operate out of shop-fronted stores we now sell directly from our bakery in Prudhoe where we also produce our trade supply cakes and bakes.
Every day we post a specials list to social media and customers can pop down to the bakery and choose goodies from the list for us to box up for them.
No two days are the same as we make over 500 different sweet treats!
PB: Was the shift to supplying to local trade customers a strategic move for the business?
KG: Yes. Several years ago we found there was such a huge demand for high quality fresh cakes and bakes from cafés and restaurants who wanted to move away from the frozen dessert market that they perhaps had once utilised, as the public’s expectations for good quality baked goods heightened.
We tested the water with a few local businesses and the feedback was incredible. We now supply to businesses from Amble to Scarborough with customers including coffee shops, deli’s, garden centres, hamper companies, leisure centres, restaurants, takeaways and so much more.
PB: When AS Design moved to Prudhoe in 2021, so many people told us ‘you have to try The Pudding Parlour’ – how did you build up such a good local following?
KG: Not only do we run our business from Prudhoe, we are both local too. Greg lives in Crawcrook and I live in Stocksfield.
Our customers are so important to us, and over the years we have built up brilliant relationships with the local community and have a strong army of regulars – many we know by name and what they like to order. We’ve been so lucky to supply birthday and celebration cakes to so many families for special events and are honoured to have been trusted with this privilege and played a part in so many special days.
PB: Last year you gave out cupcakes on Act of Kindness Day – tell us about that…
KG: We have participated in Random Acts Of Kindness Day both last year and this year. In 2021, we hadn’t long left the era of Covid lockdowns and businesses were just tentatively opening back up.
We decided therefore to give out free cupcakes to local business champions, doctors’ surgeries, pharmacy staff, school staff etc. All of those who really helped their local communities during touch times. This year we decided to hand out loads of cupcakes to general members of the public, passers by on the street, and people doing their weekly shop. We also dropped into to give some out to a few local businesses who we either work with or who are great supporters of ours!
PB: What’s your personal favourite Pudding Parlour creation?
KG: This has to be the hardest question! We have so many products and cake creations to pick just one seems almost impossible.
In addition to our normal offering we also create seasonal specials for Valentine’s Day, Mothers Day, Easter, Halloween, Christmas etc. I think despite the huge range we offer, Toffee Crisp Slice remains my
favourite thing to eat, though I try not to eat too many and execute willpower! I often take home a Toffee Crisp Slice on a Friday for myself to have with a cuppa on a weekend as they are just so good!