Chef Ashley Palmer Watts, who left his role with Heston Blumenthal and the Fat Duck Group at the end of 2019, has announced the launch of Artisan Coffee Co.
Artisan Coffee Co will launch with six coffees: the Heroine, the Big Shot, the Smart Cookie, the Genius, the Enigma and decaf the Dreamer, all available for foodservice and retail.
The company also offers a range of hand-crafted chocolates developed by Palmer-Watts and his team, where each 'chocolate flight' has been matched to a coffee.
Palmer-Watts said: "Artisan was an attractive opportunity to innovate and tackle coffee from a different angle. Whole bean coffee tends to get all the attention, yet requires considerable investment in time and equipment, and by no means guarantees a great cup. Often, the simpler and more popular brew methods can be somewhat basic in terms of character. I felt very strongly that convenient coffee needn't be dark, bitter and lacking in depth, just as I believe delicious, distinctive, characterful coffee can be approachable and convenient.
"Having drawn upon 20 years of knowledge from working with Heston, I have taken time to analyse people's relationship with coffee, while adopting a meticulous approach to maintaining consistent quality and flavour; I feel this has provided us with the opportunity to make a difference. I can't wait for people to try it!"
Palmer-Watts told The Caterer: "However, I'm not out of the kitchen permanently and still have plans to open my own restaurant in 2022."
Artisan Coffee Co co-founder and chief executive Grant Tromans added: "Artisan Coffee Co has been a long time in the making. We have great respect for those at the pinnacle of speciality coffee, we just felt like we could do something a little differently. As a team we have crafted a high-quality, delicious coffee that everyone can enjoy. You shouldn't need to be an expert in coffee to enjoy speciality coffee at home or at work.