Tipsy Puddleduck Goes Mobile Around AngusNeil Hardie
Having enjoyed success with Puddleduck Cupcakes, Hannah and Richard Pinner decided to go mobile with The Tipsy Puddleduck.
Hearing that there is a Tipsy Puddleduck around Angus conjures up images of a slightly inebriated bird on its way back from a good night at the pond.
But The Tipsy Puddleduck is in fact a mobile catering unit that is serving up cakes, bakes and much more on the Arbroath to Forfar road at Guthrie.
However, there will eventually be a tipsiness to the venture as the couple behind the enterprise, Hannah and Richard Pinner, have a licence to sell alcohol from the former cattle trailer which has been kitted out rather stylishly.
It is the newest member of the Puddleduck family which was started by Hannah, 29, a few years ago.
She explained: “I started Puddleduck Cupcakes about three years ago and we decided to get the trailer in June last year which would allow us to branch out a little bit.
“We had been doing local markets, we had done the Kirrie Market and things like that and wanted to find a way of going out and about ourselves and going a bit further afield. We thought it would be a good idea to go mobile.”
The converted cattle trailer is kitted out for mobile catering and the couple are raring to go.
Richard said: “There was a lot of work done it but none really by us. We bought it from someone in Leeds. We saw the photos but hadn’t actually seen it in the flesh until 11 o’ clock on a night in June when it arrived. It has been fully converted with running water, electric, bar fridges and everything we would need.”
Hannah added: “It needed a little bit of TLC and we were planning on getting it out in summer, but we were still in a lockdown situation. We thought we would do the cakes and cupcakes as we were doing that at the markets and we had a coffee machine, too, for offering hot drinks.
“We then ended up moving house not long after that and it went on the backburner for a few months.
“It wasn’t until just before Christmas that we thought we really need to get the word out there and start using it.
“We did a pop-up just before Christmas doing cakes and things, and we also did pancakes which went down a treat, with hot chocolate and coffee. It was a winter warmer and was well received.”
And as restrictions begin to lift as the threat from the coronavirus pandemic diminishes as the vaccine rollout continues, Hannah and Richard hope the Tipsy Puddleduck will be a regular feature at shows and events.
“We have some shows on the horizon that we are trying to get bookings for and we are available for weddings and other events, too, as we have a licence for alcohol,” Richard revealed.
Hannah added: “We are able to cater for evening receptions, and a lot of wedding receptions during the summer will be outside and they will be a bit smaller as well, so we thought what we do might be a bit quirky and ideal. We thought it might be quite a nice idea.”
Operating as a two-person team, the couple believe that the personal touch they can offer is something special.
“It is that intimate feel that you get to know who you are booking it from, it is only us. You’re not booking it through a big company with faceless staff who you will never get to know,” added Richard, 30.
“You can come to us and Hannah can do you a wedding cake too. She has wedding cakes booked for next year and people who have booked them have all been at our pop-ups to get to see us which keeps it friendly.”
While Hannah and Richard sort out the paperwork to get on the road, the pop-up cake, bake and coffee stop is currently at the end of their drive near Guthrie Castle on the A932 between Arbroath and Forfar.
“The pop-up is actually in our driveway as we are in the process of applying for our licence to go out and about so we are just trying to decide where to go,” said Hannah.
“The plan is to get out and about, but because we could do it on our own land we could at least get her up and running and get the name out there.
“The reaction has been good. The first pop-up we did last month a lot of customers were customers of mine from the cupcakes and the bakes business who had found me via that.
“They realised we were doing the pop-up so thought they would give us a try. There has been a wee bit word of mouth as well and we have had a few new customers too.”
The most important question of all, however, was why Tipsy Puddleduck?
“Part of the reason we started it was because we had lots of ducks and chickens and they provide the eggs for the cakes and bakes,” said Richard.
“We had Puddleduck Cupcakes because Richard had always wanted to have ducks. When we eventually got them I was getting a little sick of eating omelettes every single night and I thought we are going to try something a bit different,” laughed Hannah.
“I used to love baking as a kid but I hadn’t done it for years as I generally ended up eating it, but I thought ‘I am going to start baking again’ as I had heard that duck eggs were really good for baking.
“I thought ‘I will give it a shot’ and it pretty much took off from there. I am very much self-taught.
“We wanted it to be an umbrella that put the two together, thinking that it might work as a prosecco and cake bar,” revealed Richard.