Blog

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AFTER                                                              BEFORE                                AFTER

BEFORE

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BEFORE

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AFTER

We are excited to finally be in our new home at 78 Meadow Road, Earley, RG6 7EY. The new premises have a much larger kitchen, an upstairs party room, private parking and an on-site toilet. Just wanted to say a big thank you to my husband Jeff who has been working late into the night to get it ready in time for our first parties, to my mum for her beautiful sewing of the curtains, to mum and dad for their help moving the many boxes of stock and for their continued support. And finally to my beautiful girls, Megan and Bethany for their patience and understanding as we spend many hours getting organised and neglecting them - hopefully a bit more family time to come. But in the meantime, I am looking forward to getting to grips with the new space and I hope customers enjoy it too. November 2015

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I haven't updated this page for a long while now - good in some respects as it means we have been busy at Delights of Italy sourcing new products and running parties and workshops - but I felt this warranted an update. Last week we went to Calabria where my family originates from. It was our first trip as far south and we were captivated by the area - the wonderful people, the lovely food (it was so nice to indulge in Italian seafood as where we stay generally is the furthest you can get from the sea in Italy) and the beautiful scenery. We particularly liked the description in one guide book describing it as 'decaying elegance'. We did not get any further with our family history but it was lovely to think we were walking in the footsteps of our ancestors.

February 2015

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Beavers:

Approximately 60 children spread across the 4 Beaver colonies of 2nd Bracknell Scout Group recently visited Delights of Italy over 4 evenings learning how to make pasta dough and ending up with their own hand made tagliatelle to take home. All the Beavers had great fun, although were noisy at times. Grateful thanks to Jacky for her time, experience and patience is extended by all the Beaver Leaders. With luck we might be invited back in a couple of years!” 

March 10th 2014

My thanks to everyone who helped out during the week - Jacky

 

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Went to a cooking and wine tasting in London on Friday, hosted by our favourite wine producer, Castello Banfi. We had a fantastic evening making classic Italian antipasti including crostini neri, bruschetta con creme di funghi, frittata di cipolle e patate, foglie di salvia e vedure fritte, zuppa di lenticchie and cantuccini. Our chef Stefano was both amusing and inspiration - the food was wonderful and the wines were a revelation. Feb 24th 2014

We are excited to introduce to you our new pasta supplier. Combining ancient techniques with modern methods, Vecchio Pastificio Toscano produces artisan pasta of the highest quality, using the best ingredients. Based in Lucca in the heart of Tuscany, their range also includes herbs, oils and sauces and we are delighted to be working with them. 

Dec 12th 2013

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Had a great evening at Laithwaites wine tasting evening at the John Nike Hotel last week. Met some lovely people who had some very complimentary things to say about our products. Interior designer and TV personality Laurence Lleweyn Bowen was also there and thoroughly enjoyed our crostini with pomodori (tomato tapenade) and black olive pate. Hopefully see some of you at our shop in Holme Grange very soon. October 28th 2013

I've been to some good trade shows lately where I have made some great contacts. The Speciality and Fine Food Fair was like heaven with so many representatives of wonderful Italian artisan companies. We have sourced some new products for you and already have some lovely new items - Amarelli liquorice, Leonie sweets, chocolate covered coffee beans and lovely wafer cones that look like ice cream but have chocolate inside. I also have a lovely new range of olive-design accessories including place mats and coasters, trays, oil drizzlers and dipping dishes (see pictures right). Thoughts have well and truly turned to Christmas and we have started getting our panettone and pandoro in, as well as making up some hampers to inspire you. Come along and buy  a ready-made hamper for a hassle-free present or design one yourself and have it made up to your own specification and budget. September 26th 2013

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Just back from a very quick trip to Italy during which we sourced some new products. We now have some very tasty jams and jellies as well as honey in stock, along with Baci chocolates. Our porcini stock cubes have been flying off the shelves and we also have our gorgeous Santa Maria Novella pot pourri back in stock. I am also off to the Speciality and Fine Food fair at olympia on Monday - very excited about the number of Italian companies exhibiting so watch this space for another update on new products. September 7th 2013

The school holidays are now well under way and we have been making fresh pasta morning and afternoon in our children's workshops. If your kids are at a loose end, why not bring them along. Workshops take about an hour and cost £8 including a snack and a drink - and they get to take the pasta home for tea.

As the new school term inevitably looms, your thoughts may be turning to Christmas. I cannot believe I have already sold 2 Christmas presents. My thoughts are certainly already turning to Christmas in terms of ordering so we get the perfect tasty treats for you - panforte and panettone being just two.    August 7th 2013

With the summer holidays fast approaching, plans must be made to keep the little ones occupied for those long six weeks off. Here at Delights of Italy we are beginning to take bookings for our Little Chef Pasta Workshops in August which have proved a big hit during previous school holidays. While your children learn a new skill, you can enjoy a browse round the shops. You will also have time to see our most recent delivery bringing you even more products than before including various sizes and coloured candles, matches, napkin holders and new napkin designs. As well, we have recently changed suppliers for our limoncello to bring you the best that we can find. Come and see us this summer to make sure you don't miss out on anything new.  July 3rd 2013

We're very excited for next month as on Saturday 11th we're going to be celebrating our first Birthday at Holme Grange Craft Village! In order to celebrate this special occasion, we're breaking open the bubbly to have with a nice slice of cake. And all weekend we're all our customers 10% off everything in store. We hope that we'll see you all there to help us to celebrate!         April 24th 2013

Exciting developments are happening here at Holme Grange Craft Village as we try and introduce lots of new things as the weather improves. We have Peppa Pig here on Saturday 9th March with Gerry the giraffe and face-painting on March 16th and 23rd. Then on Easter Saturday and the following Tuesday to Saturday we have an Easter bunny hunt with chocolate treats for all those who are successful. There's also a new blackboard in the courtyard where youngsters can get creative while mum and dad enjoy a sit-down with a quiet cuppa.                                                   March 6th 2013

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New in this week are these great espresso coffee cups. Available in a range of colours, the stylish designs come individually, in pairs or sets of four. Mix 'n' match the colours for a great addition to any kitchen.

Feb 25 2013

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We have recently gotten in our loyaly cards. For every five pounds that you spend, you will receive one stamp. Once you have 6 stamps on your card you can choose a FREE bottle of our flavoured olive oil, worth £5.50. You can choose between a truffle, chilli, garlic, porcini

 mushroom, lemon, rosemary or basil. We also have a new offer starting - our savoury snacks are now 3 for £5 (an easy way for you to get your first stamp on our loyalty card) when the snacks are usually £2.25 each!! 

Feb 19 2013

With half term fast approaching, it may be hard to find something different and creative for your children to do to occupy them. Instead of doing the same thing as you did last half term, book one of our pasta workshops for children. They will make two types of pasta (tagliatelle and farfalle). You can leave the children to learn a new skill to go and wonder around the other shops in our village or you can stay and watch to learn yourself. You then take the pasta home for tea and it saves you from having all the cleaning up. Ring Jacky on 07920 144888 to book your children in now!            Feb 9 2013

We have just got in a new delivery of olive wood products with heart chopping boards - the perfect gift for Valentine's day. If that isn't what you're after for your loved one, come and create your own small hamper for them with products you can choose with love. We have also got a Valentine's meal deal of 3 courses including a bottle of our superb prosecco for just £20! Something special to impress your other half. Our cookery classes for adults have also taken off for this year, with a risotto evening next Friday (8th February) with our Italian chef Orsola so book yourself in quick to avoid any disappointment.                                                                               Feb 1 2013

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This week we had our new delivery of parmesan cheese. Aged for 24 months with a strong flavour and a crumbly texture, I have to say it is probably the best parmesan I have ever tasted - our customers seem to agree - one taste and you're hooked! We also have a new apple-flavoured balsamic vinegar for you to try.

Our birthday parties have taken off in a big way in 2013 and we are getting really good feedback. With children having done the whole bowling party/cinema trip, parents are saying it makes a really unusual alternative - fun, food and no mess to clear up! For more details or to check date availability, call Jacky on 07920 144888.          Jan 15 2013

We have now had a small make-over at Holme Grange Craft Village in Wokingham. One wall has come down, opening up our premises to create a light, airy space and offer even more for shoppers while another wall has gone up to provide a small storage area and to keep all that messy stuff out of the way. We are very pleased with the results and would welcome your feedback. Our chiller cabinet is also back in action with cold cuts, fresh pesto and fresh tapenades to try. We also have our range of ready-to-freeze ice creams in a selection of flavours including lemon, coffee, chocolate and fruits of the forest.                                                                                                                                                 Jan 3 2013

I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a Buon Natale and a Felice Anno Nuovo.

 I am looking forward to 2013 as we bring you an even better range of products from regions throughout Italy. The country is made up of twenty regions with distinct characteristics. Every town, every village, makes the same dish in vastly different ways, and every town and village has its proudest specialty. These cooking traditions define people's identities just as much as their dialects and their traditional costumes. Local cooking preferences and customs are shaped by geographic, historical and

 

climatic differences - and we at Delights of Italy are hoping to bring you just a few of the best. My first visit of the new year will be to Calabria in the southern most tip, the region where my family comes from. I hope to bring you the flavours of the south including pancetta calabrese, peperoncino calabrese and olive schiacciate ( smashed olives). Other specialities include cipolla rossa di Tropea, liquorice and lagane e cicciari (a pasta dish with chickpeas).                                                                                                                                                         Dec 2012

In 2013 we aim to take Delights of Italy out and about at events, fairs and food festivals. We are also hoping to run a food festival as Holme Grange Craft Village in the new year, bringing you delicacies from local producers and some, like us, from further afield. Keep checking these pages to find out where we will be next.