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Cornish Tea: Modern, Quirky, a Little Bit Piratical...

Tom Pennington, a born and bred Cornishman, always knew he wanted to start a business that celebrated his land. The question was what should it be?

In his twenties he worked as a chef and in marketing and it was only back in Looe, fittingly over a cup of tea with his uncle Duncan Bond, that the lightbulb pinged. Yorkshire has Yorkshire Tea, they thought, why shouldn't Cornwall have its own brand too, only one that encompassed the new-look modern county as much as its nautical, piratical history. The tea segued into a few bottles of wine and Cornish Tea was born. Tom says: "What we wanted is to offer a good cup of tea that was affordable and reflected a fresher view of Cornwall through modern branding.' cornishteablackandwhite.jpg


Tom and Duncan launched Cornish Tea last year as a joint venture, initially selling through farm shops and delicatessans though the quirky, whimiscal yet down to earth brand was quickly adopted by Tesco's and is now being exported to countries around the world. The tea, fittingly named Smugglers Brew, is grown in Kenya and is the result of many hours of tasting. tomandduncan'We took ages to find exactly the right taste. We wanted to find a blend that was really rounded and refreshing and consistently good with no after-taste. It took a long time.' Now there's Cornish Coffee too - 3 blends Original, Columbian and Italian - marketed in the same upbeat, slightly irreverent style.  An Earl Grey and 3 herbal teas are in the pipeline for the Autumn. The tea tastes great, the packaging stops you in your tracks and somehow it also manages to convey the essence of modern Cornwall - laidback, earthy and up for adventure. All that from a cup of tea. SB Beach & Fire

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