Founders of Smith & Sinclair, Melanie Goldsmith and Emile Bernard, describe themselves as the world’s first “Cocktail Confectioners.” Driven by curiosity and an insatiable sweet tooth, they have created a deliciously alcoholic pastille sweet.
Since launching in 2013, Smith & Sinclair, have gone from strength to strength. They are now stocked in Harrods, Harvey Nichols, Selfridges and Fenwicks and can be found online on Not on the High Street - and soon to be appearing in Old Street Station!
We caught up with the founders to find out what was going on behind the scenes…
What inspired the idea?
We came up with the concept for the cocktail pastilles in Autumn 2013 for a series of ‘Adult Play’ Board Games dating nights. The company launched in January 2014. We had been trying to work out an ‘icebreaker’ for the events, something that people could enjoy and discuss as they entered. Something that would enhance guests ‘inner child.’
How do you create your sweets?
All of our sweets are hand made, obviously with a secret recipe… as we are the only non-dairy confectionery product which has retained the amount of alcohol we have with a long lasting shelf life.
What have been your biggest challenges so far?
The biggest challenge has probably been product development and growing the company. We had a very quick growth between July - Sept and needed to ensure that the product quality and business ethos was maintained.
How has your customer feedback helped you?
We love to hear what people's most popular cocktail is (at the moment is a mojito) and we do a lot of consulting work where we're always being given briefs for creative alcohol and confectionery projects with customers. This gives us lots of unique insights.
What have been your biggest achievements so far?
To list a few… When we got Secret Cinema as a client, getting into Harvey Nichols & Selfridges, getting 20,000 sweets made in 3 weeks when we didn't have a stationary kitchen...but we're incredibly proud of a lot of what we've built!
If you could set up shop anywhere, where would it be and what would it look like?
We would love to have a multi sensory experience shop where people could come and play with their senses. Everything from taste - touch - sight - sound and smell would be engaged and would tap into your child and adult instincts.
We would probably do this somewhere like the back alleys of Soho - where there is still such a strong sense of old school London and independents.
What's next for Smith and Sinclair?
We have a lot of our plate for 2015. We have MASSIVE growth plans mainly focused on the hospitality sectors. We are also working on a lot of new product development for both consumer and trade which we cannot wait to bring to market...it's all very scientific in our kitchen right now.