Customers are looking for special treats and pubs are looking to boost margins and give customers reasons to eat and drink out of ordinary meal times, according to Paul Thomas, sales director at Brioche Pasquier.
Margins as high as 60% or 70% can be achieved with afternoon teas, which makes it a good opportunity for pubs to tap into, he added.
Olivier Ripoche, commercial director, said: “Afternoon tea is the big trend and it’s getting bigger and bigger.
“I have seen £32/person and it wasn’t the Ritz and that consisted of half a bottle of champagne and a three-tier cake stand with not much variety.”
However, the challenge for pubs is providing a high-end offer without incurring the expense of a professional pastry chef.
“Having something that’s ready made and comes into the pub frozen means the chef will come in and take the right amount of products out of the freezer to defrost - and they don’t need to do anything else to it once it’s thawed but serve it,” said Thomas.
Pasquier manufactures and hand finishes petit fours and other pastry products in its French facilities before freezing them in trays and vacuum packing them.
Individual portions can then be taken out by chefs in advance of service, which means no wastage.
Trays of petit fours can be bought for between 20p and £1 per unit, giving chefs room to scale menu prices to suit, Thomas added. The products are available from Booker, Macro and Brakes.