From a simple cup of English breakfast tea to the “champagne” of tea experiences; afternoon tea, there is no question that tea is a beverage that is indelibly integrated into our society.
It is therefore with the greatest of pleasure, and with warmest thanks, that I am honoured to be able to chat with Jennifer Perry; the proprietor of Room Forty.
Christine @Rations2R_n_R (C) Please tell me about the person behind Room Forty.
Jennifer Perry @Room_Forty (J) I’m married to Jonathan and have two lovely children aged 18 and 9 to keep me busy. I have a healthy outlook on life, healthy body/ healthy mind, and manage to eat cake by regularly exercising and eating healthily most of the time – avoiding pre packaged foods where I can.
(C) Our followers would be interested to learn about your other activities; including your recent announcement of being asked to write a weekly food column in a newspaper.
(J) My background is in marketing and PR, and I love writing features, so after sending in many press releases about Room Forty, the Clandestine Cake Club and other cafes and restaurants that were opening the chaps at Warrington Guardian asked me to get on board with them. We also did a radio interview on National Tea Day with Sean Styles at Radio Merseyside, I loved it!
(C) It would be interesting to learn about the inspiration and motivation that led you to establishing Room Forty.
(J) I have always loved being in the kitchen, cooking and baking – I actually love making curries, particularly Thai – so maybe when I am braver I will bring some of this inspiration into my cakes – I always worry someone won’t like something though, so I keep things relatively tame!
(C) Be it a place that you have already visited, or a place that you wish to visit in the future; where would be your personal choice of location to partake of afternoon tea?
(J) Oh, I think it would need to be somewhere really exotic. I was born in Hong Kong, so a Cantonese version of Afternoon Tea would be amazing to try, if there is one!?
(C) With which famous person; present or past, would you like to share afternoon tea…and why?
(J) I’m not really into celebrity culture, but I think it would be interesting to meet the Obamas and hear of their inspirational journey, showing such dignity and poise throughout – particularly Michelle. What an incredible role model.
(C) Do you have a favourite blend of tea and a particular cake that you love above others?
(J) I really love Oolong tea, it is gentle and elegant for afternoon tea. In reality I drink a tonne of breakfast tea every day!
My favourite cake – is a scone, always has been. Me and my sister have judged cafes on their scones since we were around 13 and I still use it as a benchmark. I don’t order them if they aren’t made by the venue though.
I tried Gin and Tonic White tea recently at a new café called Down The Rabbit Hole in Lymm – they have a great selection of teas and coffees. It was absolutely delicious, and I don’t like gin, or tonic!
(C) @Rations2R_n_R focuses on retro and vintage fashion. I would love to know if you share my admiration of the elegance and glamour of past fashion and; if so, are there garments for which you have a particular affection?
(J) I love vintage style, particularly the shapes and cuts of the clothing – though not the nylon and polyester! I recently bought a black velvet dress for the launch of the film Noir exhibition, it was from C&A – I used to love shopping there when I was younger. God, I sound old!
(C) Tell us more about Room Forty; it’s location, and the services provided.
(J) We are located in Warrington. Details of the services that we provide may be found on our website http://www.roomforty.co.uk/ or by contacting us as shown below.
(C) How can Room Forty be booked?
(J) Just email firstname.lastname@example.org or ring 01925 357940.
(C) I am sure that our followers would like to know about your plans for the future.
(J) I have so many plans, all developing at a rate of knots. We’re working on festivals, supporting Warrington’s bid for City of Culture, attending fayres and markets at the weekends, running bread workshops that are booking up faster than we can put them on, supporting new product launches with canapes and cream teas and of course helping our guests to have a fabulous time, with nothing to do but enjoy themselves.
Thank you Jennifer for taking the time to chat with me in the most fascinating of interviews. I am immensely grateful that you have shared your story.
I wish you every success and look forward to following your journey.