MAKING things better is at the heart of Boston Tea Party (BTP), who are opening in Taunton today.

Simon Brand, 35, General Manager of the Taunton café, said: “It has felt like a long time waiting for the café in Taunton.

“Given that the building was a restaurant before, we’ve completely redone it – if anyone went to Prezzo before they would notice the difference.”

“The builders have been in for ten weeks, so it has been a few months of work. We are excited to get the team together, they are working together well and we are trying to ‘Boston-ize’ them a bit.

“I am nervous, but excited too.”

BTP aim to make as many environmental and sustainable changes as they can, while still running a successful and financially stable business. They began with just three restaurants in Bath, Bristol and Exeter.

When the current owner decided to take on the business, they expanded to more places in the South West creating this sustainable and exciting chain.

Simon started working for BTP just over three years ago. Before that, he had his own landscaping business and then move onto working in the charity sector.

When the opportunity to work for BTP arose, he took it – and hasn’t looked back since.

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He explained: “You meet some lovely people who buy into what Boston is about – our values, our sustainability, credentials around cups etc.

“It is lovely to meet people who think the same as us.

“We use green energy from Ecotricity.

“We separate out all our recycling and then some stuff goes for incineration to create energy, so we don’t put anything in landfill.”

In 2018, BTP banned the use of plastic cups from their cafés too. They no longer offer disposable cups and only reusable ones.

They sell reusable cups from £4.25 and if you buy one, you get your first hot drink for free.

Also, if you forget you cup, BTP offer a scheme where you can pay a £3.50 deposit and take the cup, and, as long as you bring it back, the £3.50.

Simon added: “Most recently, we have been trying to tackle clingfilm. As clingfilm is single use and not recyclable.

“We have managed throughout most of our cafes to remove the use of clingfilm and find other substitutes.

“We are real advocates for saying to other businesses come and join us and let us talk to you about what we have done and collectively we can all have an impact.”

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All BTP’s serve a similar menu, based on dishes that are simple but effective, so they can make sure that all the dishes can be cooked fresh and taste delicious.

Their autumn menu has a “feed your soul” inspired theme with Shakshuka (baked eggs served with pitta), tomato and coconut dhal, mac n’ cheese with chorizo and French toast with chocolate, caramelised banana and clotted cream (which I can truthfully say is a delicious sweet treat for the winter months).

Simon said: “We have a lot of breakfast options and a lot of Boston options too that are created in our development kitchen.

“The menu is quite vast. There is always a busy team in the kitchen prepping away and making sure we have full availability.

“We want to serve a great product in a good time and make sure we cook fresh to order.

“I quite like the plant burger we have at the moment.

“Earlier in the year we launched a vegan burger with a texture of meat, which is a great addition to the menu.

“But all of it is my favourite really.”

As well as unique food, the buildings are important to the staff at BTP. Despite being a chain, each café works hard to be individual and it is no different for the 23rd café opening in Taunton, in the building where Prezzo used to be.

Simon said: “We’re always looking for buildings that are unique, they might be a little be knackered and out-of-use. We try wherever possible to use reclaimed materials.

“Every Boston is completely unique – only one is a new build, the rest are old buildings. Every space is different.

“The space here is fantastic. We’ve got the ground floor, first floor and a secret garden area. We have a nice mural on the wall and festoon lighting. It is super cool and totally hidden. It is right up our street.

“We’ve got comfortable chairs, as well as formal seating – we want to be a place where everyone feels they can come to us.

“There seems to be lots of good vibes about us coming to Taunton.

“Our neighbours in Costa have been fantastic as well.

“I am excited to get going and see what happens really.”

To find out more about Boston Tea Party visit bostonteaparty.co.uk or visit their Facebook page, @btptaunton

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