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Harpenden mother & daughter duo are brewing success at Twist Teas

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Bow down to royal-tea - Harpenden based Twist Teas

When is a cup of tea not just a cup of tea? The answer of course is when it is an experience. Harpenden based Twist Teas founders, mother and daughter duo Nicky Kavanaugh & Claire Ayers tells us about the Twist Teas journey. Based at Pollards Farm in Harpenden, Twist Teas are a family business creating beau-tea-ful tea for tea lovers across the globe. We will stop with the puns as it will become tea-dious.

Where did you start? A Tea Story with a twist

“We’ve always loved tea and knew that the tea from a pot with loose leaf always tasted better than tea in a mug made with tea bags.  The lovely loose leaves floating in the pot released the flavour but powdery tea in tea bags didn’t have quite the same hit .  We could see no reason why tea in a bag should be different from tea in mug and, in 2017, set out on a mission to change that.”

Fast forward to 2020 and Twist Teas now have over 50 blends and 10 “Great Taste” awards. All their blends are made from the finest, ecologically sound ingredients and are hand blended and hand packed in the UK.  Leaves in their corn-silk biodegradable pyramid tea bags are the same as the lovely loose leaves that are brewed in a pot – whatever the leaves: black, green, rooibos, chai or fruit and herbal.

Tea time is now me time

While traditional black teas will always be popular, there have been some changes in terms of who is drinking tea and why. 25 to 40 year olds are drinking tea at a rate faster than ever before. More and more consumers are looking for drinks that give them specific health benefits and demand for healthy green and herbal teas is growing. The wellness trend is also being driven by previously hard to acquire products being made accessible in the home.

‘The Tea Maker’, a product from Sage Appliances for example, steeps tea leaves at the right temperature for the required amount of time at the push of a button. This trend has seen consumers take note of all aspects of the tea making experience. Even water filter brand BRITA have seen increased engagement from the tea community by integrating a filter into kettles. There are exciting times ahead in the tea market and this is exactly the landscape that shaped the Twist Tea offering.

Sweet dreams are made of teas

Twist Tea have a wide range of uniquely crafted blends, with new, versatile ways of brewing and serving: lattes, cold brews, in milk, in water …  and Twist Tea continuously innovate to meet the growing demand from contemporary tea lovers.  Their premium leaves capture loose leaf flavour with the tea convenience of a biodegradable tea bag.  Just as consumers moved from freeze dried granular coffee to freshly ground artisan coffee, so they are moving from dusty black tea in plastic laced tea bags to premium teas in biodegradable tea bags.

Twist Tea were first to market with their Cold Brew range. They are also taking the lead on popular sweet-but-sugar-free flavoured rooibos and herbal infusions with added functional benefits in their Puds Without Sin range: blends such as Lemon Drizzle, Creme Brewlee, Mint Humbug & Banana Shake have proven to be a very popular and offer the sweetness of a pudding without the calories.

Twist Teas

Twist Teas are continuously focusing their marketing efforts on brewing and serving ideas for their premium blends and believe there is a lot of scope for more innovation and development in this area. For Twist Teas, it is a fabulous time to be a player in the premium tea sector and great for consumers too.

Not only are Twist Teas passionate about great tasting tea, they fully understand their social responsibility and are passionate about the environment. Twist Teas pride themselves on great tasting tea that’s environmentally sound.  All their teas and ingredients are ethically sourced from sustainable growers and producers. The card used on their beautiful designed packaging is forest stewardship certified. If that was not enough, their storage caddies are made from recycled tin and are reusable.

You can view the entire Twist Tea range on www.twist-teas.co.uk and follow them on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

Bow down to royal-tea - Harpenden based Twist Teas

Deputy Editor of TrendLife Magazine. Often daydreaming, always happy. If you only do one thing today, do it more stylish than you did before.

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A brand new Bingo Brunch experience is coming to Watford’s Barrio

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The launch of Barrio Bars in Watford is set to bring a brand new bottomless bingo brunch experience to the High Street

On 5th November, the newly opened Barrio venue will launch its bingo brunch concept, La Isla Bonita 80s Brunch, in Watford. Translating to ‘The beautiful island’, La Isla Bonita Brunch aims to recreate that perfect tropical holiday feeling, with food and cocktails galore, bingo mayhem and 80s music all afternoon-long.

The launch of Barrio Bars in Watford is set to bring a brand new bottomless bingo brunch experience to the High Street

Already a popular party experience at Barrio Shoreditch, the 80s themed musical brunch is scheduled to run every Saturday from 12pm, and will include a two-course brunch, welcome cocktail and a variety of bottomless drinks (prosecco, spiced rum sangria and Sol beer).

Once guests have finished tucking into a menu of delicious burgers, including Queso Libre as a vegetarian option and Saint and Sinner as the vegan burger plus Barrio Churros, the musical bingo commences, brought to life by a captivating host and nostalgic 80s tunes by Barrio’s best DJs. Brunch goers can expect witty bingo calls, group singalongs and impromptu tableside performances. Prizes for winning the brunch also include a very tasty £100 bar tab.

The launch of Barrio Bars in Watford is set to bring a brand new bottomless bingo brunch experience to the High Street

For £35 per person, over-21s can enjoy 90 minutes of bottomless drinks and then eat, bingo and party until 5pm.

Those interested can book the first La Isla Bonita 80s Brunch at Barrio Watford for a special launch price of £25 (valid for 5th and 12th Nov brunch dates).

More about Barrio Watford

On 20th October 2022, Barrio Familia opened its first out-of-London venue in Watford, bringing Latin-inspired cocktails, authentic Mexican eats, a killer happy hour offering, live entertainment and DJs, plus an immersive 80s Bingo Bottomless Brunch.

Following the announcement of the group’s flagship site, and world’s largest tequila bar, in Covent Garden which is set to launch in early November, Barrio Familia has opened Watford’s first Tequila bar this month.

Barrio Familia opened its first out-of-London venue in Watford, bringing Latin-inspired cocktails, authentic Mexican eats, a killer happy hour offering, live entertainment and DJs, plus an immersive 80s Bingo Bottomless Brunch.

Bringing the spirit of the Latin Quarter into Watford, the new venue will have space for up to 200 guests to enjoy a brand new, freshly crafted cocktail menu, delicious Mexican inspired food creations, including their signature tacos, and famous Latino party vibes.

The outside terrace is also being turned into Barrio’s popular tropical yard, offering the perfect space for another 80 guests to gather with like-minded ‘amigos’ and sip cocktails, enjoy a meal and experience a fiesta like never before.

Barrio Familia was acquired by Nightcap in November 2021 and has since gone from strength to strength. New venues; Barrio Watford and Barrio Covent Garden will add to their growing portfolio of sites in Shoreditch, Soho, Angel, and Brixton. After opening the first Barrio site in 2007, the group’s vision was to have a Barrio in every big party neighborhood in the UK and Watford will play a huge role in that exciting expansion.

Each of the Barrio Bars sites offer a full-colour, full-flavour experience, and of course, plenty of Tequila. The group plans to open seven days a week and be the perfect new spot in Watford for all occasions, from lunches and daytime drinks to brunches and late night partying.

Jim Robertson, Managing Director of Barrio Familia,

Jim Robertson, Managing Director of Barrio Familia, commented:

“We are incredibly excited to be taking our Latino party outside of London for the first time. This is a fantastic venue and we can’t wait to welcome the residents of Watford into the Barrio familia and bring the party! I believe Barrio will be a fantastic addition to Watford High Street that will suit all types of occasions and bring a feel good bar that welcomes everyone. We have some amazing things planned for Barrio Watford, so watch this space and get ready for the biggest fiesta in town!”

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The Almere Milton Keynes launches Neighbourhood Hero initiative

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The Almere Milton Keynes support local businesses

‘All about the community’, The Almere prides themselves on making living easy for their residents. With residents set to move this month, the exciting new community boasts co-working, communal and event spaces within the building.

The ground floor ‘Gathering Place’ is bookable to the local community and to residents, whilst upstairs on the 11th floor sits an amenity space for residents, where part will be for co-working, roof terraces to hang out, barbeques and yoga classes. Additionally, there will also be a fitted kitchen and dining area which can be closed off for a private dining experience.

The Almere Neighbourhood Hero initiative

With community at its heart, The Almere aims to build relationships and work collaboratively with local businesses to guide residents to the best spots and products in town. The Almere’s new Neighbourhood Hero initiative has handpicked local, and predominantly independent businesses to connect residents with the true value of living in Milton Keynes, highlighting all that there is to offer.

Milton Keynes' DeRoka is part of The Almere Local Hero initiative

With the recent COVID-19 pandemic having had such an impact on small, independent businesses it’s key to get people back out there and supporting locally. The Neighbourhood Hero initiative is a fantastic example of this, helping businesses to thrive and regain their position within the economy. Current Heroes include Bogota Coffee Co; DeRoka; Fuuudgelife; Suds; Sweat Studios; Doorstep Cocktails; Mollys Pantry; Pup Club; Headonist Hair and Beauty; and Moxy Hotel.

Benefits of the Almere led scheme include:

  • Feature on The Almere website, with regular spotlights and tags on social media channels
  • Exposure to over 600+ residents, and the ability to send offers and deals to them, without incurring any marketing costs
  • Welcomed as a core part of the community, allowing the businesses to use the communal spaces to hold pop-up events for residents and the local community
  • Include collateral in the ‘move in packs’ for new residents, for free
  • Invited to all community events at The Almere, and work together on collaborative event activations

Community Manager, Holly Birmingham explains, “Community is so important to us at The Almere – it is all about  meaningful connections both within our own four walls and the wider neighbourhood. At The Almere, we aren’t just a building,  we are a new community in the heart of Milton Keynes. We want to support the brilliant local businesses around us, create lasting relationships and of course, show our residents the best our town has to offer.”

The Almere Local Hero initiative

The new scheme offers an exciting experience for local businesses to work on an exclusive basis with the upcoming, Milton Keynes hotspot, offer discounts to residents and in turn help show the rest of the UK what Milton Keynes has to offer!

About The Almere

A pioneering new rental community for Milton Keynes, The Almere, is a collection of 294 rental apartments built across two buildings with neighbourhood and outstanding service experience at its core.

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St Albans Comedy Extravaganza returns to Verulamium Park in July

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St Albans Comedy Garden presented by heycar is set to light up Verulamium Park this summer with a magnificent series of open-air shows from 27-31st July!

St Albans Comedy Garden presented by heycar is set to light up Verulamium Park this summer with a magnificent series of open-air shows from 27-31st July!

Starring legendary BAFTA and Perrier Award winner DYLAN MORAN, the guv’nor himself AL MURRAY, multi-award winning SARA PASCOE, the Last Leg’s ROSIE JONES, Father Ted star ARDAL O’HANLON, lo-fi hero DAVID O’DOHERTY and many more huge names performing at this year’s astounding set of open-air shows.

St Albans Comedy Garden line-up

Stand-up favourites are out in force too with cult poet / comic TIM KEY, German Comedy Ambassador HENNING WEHN, observational master ED BYRNE, Afterlife star KERRY GODLIMAN, Taskmaster champ LOU SANDERS, Edinburgh Comedy Award winner JOHN ROBINS, Netflix star JOEL DOMMETT, the inimitable REGINALD D HUNTER to name a few.

Alongside established names sit some of the brightest breakthrough talent such as the acclaimed CELYA AB, stand-up phenomenon FATIHA EL-GHORRI and the award-winning ESTHER MANITO, fast rising TADIWA MAHLUNGE all making their St Albans debut.

What to expect at St Albans Comedy Garden

Following last summer’s huge sell-out first edition St Albans Comedy Garden returns with another astounding programme of stand-up comedy presented in a fully-seated open-air theatre in the Park’s beautiful Water Meadow.

St Albans Comedy Garden presented by heycar is set to light up Verulamium Park this summer with a magnificent series of open-air shows from 27-31st July!

This year’s comedy extravaganza will once again be brimful with bars serving up a tastemaker selection of craft beers, cocktails and more, plus an array of street-food stalls from the leading lights of the local street food scene.

Tickets are expected to fly as comedy-lovers from St Albans and beyond grab the chance to see these masterfully curated shows, each featuring a host of critically-acclaimed stars guaranteeing a hit of absolute entertainment in the heart of the summer.

St Albans Comedy Garden - Sara Pascoe

The sibling team behind the Comedy Garden, Cass Randolph and Will Briggs of 57 Festivals, can’t wait to return to St Albans. Cass said “We’re thrilled with this year’s line-up and to be back in Verulamium Park, we had such a great first year last summer, the audiences were an absolute riot, far livelier than we had expected! The acts really feed off that kind of energy and in turn give incredible performances.”

Will added “We have some outstanding acts joining us this year, i’m especially looking forward to seeing Dylan Moran headline our opening night and can’t wait to watch stand-out newcomers CELYA AB and FATIHA EL-GHORRI on the big stage.”

St Albans Comedy Garden - Joel Dommett

This year’s event is partnered with heycar, Chief Commercial Officer Karen Hilton said: “With this year’s Comedy Garden returning to St Albans, it’s shaping up to be an incredible, feel-good summer. We have so much laughter to catch up on after the last few years and I can’t think of a better way to do it. The line-up is truly world-class, and we’re particularly looking forward to seeing the incredible Joel Dommett in action. heycar is honoured to be sponsoring this incredible event and we can’t wait to see everyone in St Albans this July!”

St Albans Comedy Garden tickets

Get your tickets now and be part of this year’s magnificent St Albans Comedy Garden! Visit the website to find out more www.stalbanscomedygarden.co.uk

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