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Gordon Ramsay’s Future Food Stars: Where to buy the contestant’s products

There’s everything from curiously-flavoured jams to Scottish clootie dumplings and plantain crisps

Alex Lee
Thursday 28 April 2022 21:15
<p>The foodie entrepreneurs are all vying for Ramsay’s £125,000 investment</p>

The foodie entrepreneurs are all vying for Ramsay’s £125,000 investment

Gordon Ramsay’s Future Food Stars is the weirdest business show on TV right now, blending together The Apprentice, Kitchen Nightmares, and let’s face it, SAS: Who Dares Wins. Yet, while we titter at the show’s openers and Ramsay’s extreme displays of masculinity, we can’t deny that it’s sure filled the Apprentice-shape void in our hearts.

The new BBC show sees 12 food and drink business owners from across the UK compete in challenges based around running a business in the culinary industry. The winner, and their business, will receive Ramsay’s £125,000 investment. We’re on week five now, and inching ever closer to seeing one foodie entrepreneur be crowned the winner.

So far, we’ve seen the group cook up food to sell on the shores of Cornwall, put on a forest-inspired lunch in the woods and concoct a non-alcoholic spirit. We’ve also watched them fillet some salmon, deliver food on a high-wire bridge in the Lake District, and yes, jump off a cliff. (Wait...what show did we say this was again?).

While some of the entrepreneurs haven’t yet launched their culinary endeavours, most of the contestants’ food and drink businesses are already up and running. They range from curiously-flavoured jams and marmalades, clootie dumplings and popcorn mussels to bottled cocktails, a Japanese-inspired sour soft drink and apple cider vinegar seltzers.

If you’re interested in trying out the contestant’s products, we’ve rounded up everything you need to know about them and where exactly they’re available to buy. Though you may need to trek to a couple of their restaurants to get a taste as some are served up hot, rather than being sold in-store or online.

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Michelle Maddox – Clootie McToot: Clootiemctootdumplings.com

Michelle Maddox’s business journey began in 2015 when she baked and sold her traditional Scottish clootie dumplings at her son’s school fete. Two years later, Clootie McToot was born, and in 2018, she opened her first shop in Abernethy.

For those unaware, a clootie dumpling is a Scottish fruit pudding wrapped in a freshly-boiled cloot (Scots for cloth), sprinkled with flour. The flour, Clootie McToot says is “what forms the delicious ‘skin’ around the outside of the dumpling after it has been boiled”.

Clootie McToot sells a range of different-flavoured clootie dumplings starting at £9. There’s the traditional clootie dumpling, containing mixed fruit, orange zest, cinnamon and ginger, infused with mixed spice (From £9, Clootiemctootdumplings.com). Or you can go a bit more exotic with an apple, pear and cinnamon flavour; the cherry, date and Lindores Aqua Vitae option; the plum and gin flavour; or the rhubarb and ginger. There’s also a gluten-free version, as well as a create your own clootie dumpling kit (From £17.99, Clootiemctootdumplings.com).

Buy now

Stephanie Buttery: Chu Lo: Chu-lo.com

Manchester-based Stephanie Buttery is a former navy Lieutenant whose business journey began in Tokyo while travelling with the British royal navy. While there, she tasted the sour alcoholic drink “chuhai”. While she says she loved the taste, she couldn’t find anything like it back in the UK, and so Chu Lo was born, an alcohol-free version of the sour, fruity, fizzy Japanese beverage.

Chu Lo comes in three different flavours – apple sour, peach sour and lemon sour – and is packaged in recyclable aluminium cans with unique illustrations. If you want the most authentic-tasting experience, the lemon sour is the one based on the Japanese classic (From £16.20, Chu-lo.com).

You can buy a pack of six cans which gets you two of each flavour (£9.10, Chu-lo.com) or a pack of 12 cans which means you’ll receive four of each flavour (£17.20, Chu-lo.com). You can also buy crates of 12 (£16.20, Chu-lo.com) or 24 (£29.99, Chu-lo.com), with just one flavour in each crate. You can also buy a pack of 24 apple sour cans on Amazon (£29.99, Amazon.co.uk).

Buy now

Jamie Savage – Savages Mussels: Savagesmussels.com

With similar ties to the royal navy is Jamie Savage. As chef he used to cater for 200 shipmates onboard HMS Northumberland, and after leaving he went on to work in various restaurants in Macclesfield, testing out new recipes.

With a love for mussels and seafood, he launched Savages Mussels in 2018. First selling food as a pop-up around Manchester, he then landed permanent spots at Altrincham Market and Macclesfield Treacle Market before gaining a permanent place at the food hall in Macclesfield.

In the food hall, you’ll find Savages Mussels cooking up everything from a Savages mussel burger to garlic mussels and asparagus, king prawns and a fish finger butty as well as plenty of steamed mussels and popcorn mussels, too.

Visit website

Victoria Omobuwajo – Sunmo: Sunmosnacks.com

London-based Business School graduate, Victoria Omobuwajo, first launched her company Sunmo with a range of plantain crisps as part of her degree – something that was originally formulated in her mother’s kitchen in Dalston.

The original plantain crisps are vegan, made from 100 per cent natural ingredients and are free from palm oil. They come in naturally sweet, smoked chilli or sea salt flavours (£15.96, Sunmosnacks.com).

Since it initially launched in 2019, the brand has expanded and now makes other healthy snacks such as sweet potato puffs in sweet chilli, sea salt and balsamic vinegar or cheese flavours (£14.69, Sunmosnacks.com); protein bites in cookie dough, millionaire shortbread or peanut butter flavours (£27.99, Sunmosnacks.com) and a little more unusually – protein powder (£25, Sunmosnacks.com).

Buy now

Valentina Fois – Lele’s vegan cake mix: Leleslondon.com

Italian-born chef Valentina Fois moved to London in 2009 and has been running her own vegan cafe and bakery, Lele’s, in Hackney since 2016. And four years ago, she launched a series of vegan cake mixes to push the brand further.

Lele’s sells a range of different cake mixes on its online store, including a gluten-free, nut-free and soya-free vanilla cupcake mix (£3.40, Leleslondon.com) and brownie mix (£3.40, Leleslondon.com); plus a gluten and nut-free banana bread mix (£3.40, Leleslondon.com). It did also use to sell a baked doughnut mix, but this seems to have been taken down from the website for now.

The dry mixes are ready to use as soon as you buy them. You only need to add water, oil and/or plant-based milk to turn the mix into a cake.

Buy now

Asher Flowers – Rogue: Enjoyrogue.com

Asher Flowers, from the Rhondda, is a former model and PR graduate, who ditched his job in advertising in London to move back to Wales to start his own jam company called Rogue in 2017. The entrepreneur first made his jams by hand in his mother’s kitchen, selling his interestingly-flavoured preserves at farmers markets and food fairs, but Rogue is now stocked in the likes of Ocado and Waitrose & Partners.

Rogue produces jams, chutneys and marmalades in a whole range of curious flavours. From cocktail inspired marmalades – like negroni (£3.25, Waitrose.com) and espresso martini (£3.50, Waitrose.com) – to the supremely sweet flavours of strawberry and tonka bean jam (£3.25, Waitrose.com) and tutti frutti jam (£3.25, Waitrose.com).

There’s also a blood orange and vanilla marmalade (£3.50, Enjoyrouge.com), a dark and stormy marmalade (£3.50, Enjoyrogue.com) and even a bravado chilli pepper jam (£3.50, Enjoyrogue.com) and kickin’ and smokin’ sauce (£3.50, Enjoyrogue.com). A sauce or spread for every occasion and meal.

Buy now

Jen Wright – The Cocktail Pickers Club: Cocktailpickers.co.uk

Jen Wright from Castleford went hunting for bar-quality bottled cocktails in 2014 but came up empty-handed. After two years of planning her alcoholic cocktail company, she sold her estate agency business, launching The Cocktail Pickers Club in 2016.

The Cocktail Pickers Club sells a range of different bottled cocktail flavours, but Wright hopes to scale the business by selling kegs of her cocktails to premium bars, using real fruit and purees.

Not all the cocktail flavours were in stock at the time of writing, but you can currently buy a strawberry and rhubarb vodka cosmopolitan cocktail with 8 per cent alcohol (£16, Cocktailpickers.co.uk) and a passionfruit vodka martini cocktail with 8 per cent alcohol (£16, Cocktailpickers.co.uk). If gin is your tipple of choice there’s a bramble hedgerow gin cocktail with 10 per cent alcohol (£16, Cocktailpickers.co.uk). And some of the bottles are also on sale at Amazon (£16.99, Amazon.co.uk).

Buy now

Leah Harkess – Norah’s Brownies: Norahsbrownies.com

Another Hackney-based entrepreneur is Leah Harkess, a former teacher who founded Norah’s Brownies in 2017. Named after her daughter, the company first started while she was on maternity leave and it has only continued to grow.

All of Norah’s Brownies are hand made and are all gluten and dairy free. They’re also free of refined sugars – instead being made with coconut sugar – and there are a number of different flavours and toppings available. The company’s bestseller is the bronuts (a mix between a brownie and a doughnut) variety box (£23, Norahsbrownies.com), which includes roasted hazelnut nibs, vegan marshmallows, brownie sprinkles, freeze dried raspberry, pistachio and rose and a vegan white chocolate and strawberry bronut.

Norah’s also sell summer bronuts, a vegan variety box, a classic variety box, rhubarb bronuts and many more. Most boxes cost between £20 and £30.

Buy now

Vincenzo Gentile – Smokin’ Brothers: Smokin-brothers.com

Vincenzo Gentile had been working for a smoked salmon producer when he decided to go his own way, subsequently launching his own company to compete with his former employer. The business is Smokin’ Brothers, which has a smokehouse in the Cotswolds, and produces artisan hand-sliced smoked salmon using only smoke and salt.

Each batch comes in fully compostable packaging, and the company delivers its salmon nationwide. The cheapest is two 200g smokin’ trays (from £29.80, Smokin-brothers.com), but the company also sells whiskey and soy glazed smoked salmon, tail fillets, belly fillets, whole sides and fillet gift boxes, as well as weekly, fortnightly and monthly subscriptions.

Buy now

Bola Adegbenro – Jitterbug: Jitterbug.life

Bola Adegbenro is a health coach hailing from Hertfordshire. In 2016, after a recent health scare, she decided to ditch sugary soft drinks, instead blending her own alternatives at home. What she concocted was an apple cider vinegar seltzer. And in 2019, Jitterbug was born.

This premium seltzer soft drink brand merges real fruit juice with apple cider vinegar, and the website says that there’s no sugar, no artificial sweeteners, no artificial flavourings and “no nasties”. The drinks are sold in packs of 5 or 12, and there are three different flavours on offer: orange jive apple cider vinegar seltzer (from £14.40, Jitterbug.life); lemonade swing apple cider vinegar seltzer (from £14.40, Jitterbug.life); or berry hop sparkling apple cider vinegar seltzer (from £14.40, Jitterbug.life). You can also buy the cans on their own from Holland & Barrett (£2.29, Hollandandbarrett.com).

Buy now

Amit Panwar – Pandeli Indian sauces

Amit Panwar hails from Gloucestershire and currently runs the Marlbank Inn pub and restaurant in Malvern, but it’s not this that Panwar is hoping Ramsay will invest in.

Panwar makes authentic bottled North Indian sauces under the name Pandeli, which have been developed using family recipes. While we can’t find any places where you can buy his sauces online, the Marlbank Inn website suggests that you might be able to get them from the restaurant itself. The company sells three simmering sauces and one hot sauce.

Visit website

Matthew Watts – Jackdaw zero-waste restaurant

Finally, London-based Matthew Watts is one of the few contestants who is yet to set up their business. With a background in hospitality, Watts is hoping to open a zero-waste restaurant, catering towards customers who want to give back.

Gordon Ramsay’s Future Food Stars airs every Thursday at 9pm on BBC One.

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