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The Perfect Gentleman's Jam

Some British brands are so special that just seeing them makes you feel all is well with the world.  Tiptree jam (or more correctly, Wilkin and Sons Ltd) is one of those.  Indeed, if you’re travelling abroad and spot a jar of Tiptree Strawberry Jam in the supermarket aisle, you might pause or even smile at it!  It may be the familiar label, the Royal Warrant, the delicious jammy contents or just the memories it brings about.  The fact is, if we’ve been raised in the UK, we all have a little bit of Tiptree DNA in us!

Here at The English Cream Tea Company, we believe that great jam is to be celebrated.  Alright, it’s not on the doctors’ lists of goji berries, kale and wheatgrass – but it is the very thing that makes the thought of breakfast, tea-time, puddings and childhood…delicious and good!  And Tiptree know what’s good – they have been involved in the art of jam making for 125 years!  From their founder, Arthur Charles Wilkin who began fruit farming in the Essex village of Tiptree in 1864 onwards, they are the masters of their market. Bearing in mind the lack of Twitter and modern technology then, they went from directly supplying 8000 customers in 1901 to 12000 customers in 1907.  Even today, do you have 12000 Twitter followers (which also, in Wilkin and Sons Ltd’ case, included the Royal Families of England, Spain and Sweden)?  Now they are in 70 countries of the world with a range of over 100 products (including marmalades, honey, chilli mustard, teas, Christmas puddings, tomato sauce and ice creams too!).

Strawberry JamWell, as a business, we’ve a way to go to reach that level but we certainly share the same values about a commitment to excellent quality.  Even during wartime hardship the chairman decreed:  “Quality and purity will in no circumstances be depreciated.”  That sounds like an excellent maxim for perfect gentlemen!  

Talking of which, did you know that Bond, James Bond, had a favourite Tiptree jam?  Forget ‘shaken not stirred’ – and bring out the ‘dark crimson luxury Little Scarlet conserve’ (007‘s preference in From Russia With Love).  That’s a strawberry jam like no other.  However, there’s a strong contender in our own personal preference list, for Tiptree’s even more extravagant offering:  Mulberry Conserve.  Try it with our Cranberry Scones and fresh Cornish clotted cream, and you’ve got the tea of Gentlemen and Kings.  Yes, our hamper boxes of indulgent afternoon tea celebrate Tiptree jams made from hand-picked fruit…as the perfect accompaniment to our hand-prepared scones and treats.  A match made in heaven.

Thinking about a perfect match, if you’re a Romantic Gentleman and you’d like to delight someone with a hamper box of afternoon tea on Valentine’s Day, contact us on 01279 876661 before Tuesday 12th February and quote ‘Tiptree’ to get a discount off the delightful With Love Box (packed with delicious treats and pink fizz for two). This is a little indulgence you can justify – for surely there will be jam both today and tomorrow!  

Article by Jane Malyon from

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