Yate café wins prestigious award
A CAFE next to Yate’s Kingsgate Park has been voted the cream of the crop.
The Vintage Birdcage Cakery and Café won the title of the Best Café in Gloucestershire in the England Business Awards. It was voted in by members of the public over dozens of competitors.
Owner and founder Nicole Jones, above, said winning was "overwhelming", adding: "It still doesn’t feel real – the team are completely and utterly honoured to have even been even up for nomination. Just think how many cafes are in Yate and Chipping Sodbury, let alone the whole of Gloucestershire!”
Nicole believes that the secret of their success is making everything on-site.
She said: "It does cause a lot of stress making our own cakes but people come from far and wide to purchase our sweet treats...that’s what makes us stand out and I don’t want to ever lose that.”
Nine years ago, Nicole was a parent who made cakes for PTA events at her children’s primary school. On one occasion she offered what she didn’t sell to a café in Wickwar, and they were so popular that the café asked to stock them. When she was working at Hamptons Deli, she started to make cakes to sell, and people came into the shop just to buy her cheesecake and tiffins.
More opportunities came in. Nicole supplied cakes for Coffee Beans, then picked up an order for a deli in London, then another for two restaurants.
She said: “Then the business grew from my kitchen at home, and the stock ended up taking over the family dining room."
After initially moving to a unit in Frampton Cotterell, Nicole moved to Grooms House at Stanshawes Court in Yate so that her business could grow. Four years later, her café employs 24 staff, including teenagers who work at weekends.
Nicole’s mum and teenage children also work at the café.
She said: “I’ve learnt how to run the business on the job. I’ve flown by the seat of my pants and learnt by my mistakes. I’m also very proud that I’ve never got in any debt. I’ve waited until I’ve had enough money to buy each piece of equipment outright.
“There’s nothing more enjoyable than coming to work, being with a wonderful team of people and living my dream.”