It’s what you do before the season that makes you a champion. Stock up on the right products and be ready to serve from the 29th June.
Year on year, the catering industry sees some very predictable spikes during the Wimbledon fortnight, namely strawberries, cream, Champagne and Pimm's. Here are our favourite tips for serving these goodies to help run a service you just can’t fault.
Strawberries and Cream On Green
Here, fresh is best. You already know that the freshness of ingredients is important, but I’m talking about building the dish. Cream interacts with strawberries; after anything more than three minutes, the strawberries begin to lose firmness. Avoid this by spooning on the cream at the very last second. For serving inside, this dish will suit almost any vessel, a favourite being glass bowls. When serving on the green, Vegware make great compostable tubs that are the perfect size for individual portions.
Be a Champagne Ace
Studies show that customers are favouring premium Champagne brands, meaning an increased spend per bottle. Stay on top of this by ensuring you have plenty of ice buckets and a reliable ice machine that can cope with the demands. If you're offering drinks to take outside, champagne by the glass works perfectly; serve it up in modern, polycarbonate flutes which are a million miles away from the old style, cloudy glasses that ruined your fizz.
Where there’s strawberries, there’s Pimm's. The caterers at Wimbledon expect to sell 230,000 glasses of Pimm's during the fortnight. Take full advantage of this summer craze by selling Pimm's in pitchers, which are faster to serve than individual drinks and result in shorter queues since you won't need to serve every party member individually. Pre-making a Pimm's fruit salad can save precious serving time; just cut up your favourite Pimm's garnishes and store chilled, ready for action. Bear in mind that Pimm's doesn't always have to be served with fruit and lemonade; liven up a dry sparkling wine with 10ml of Pimm's to make a Pimm's Royale that will attract any sweet toothed tennis fan.
Don’t be afraid to mix things up and play with names during Wimbledon. Last year, one of the large supermarkets renamed their strawberries “Strawmurries” and saw a 50% increase in sales. Just a few simple tricks can ensure that you serve up a profitable Tennis season.
By Matt England