A Shrewsbury-based catering company, with over 30 years’ experience under their belt are venturing into the world of pies.
Former Catering students from Shrewsbury College, husband and wife duo, Caroline and Mark Jones, already own Carmar Tea Room on Castle Street and The Snug, in The Parade Centre, but decided to open ‘The π Theory’ named after the math’s theory, – serving traditional pies with a modern twist – all with help from their children.
Caroline and Mark, studied Catering in the late 70’s and early 80’s and have had a passion for food ever since – a passion which has rubbed off onto their children.
Daughter, Bethany jones, studied Hospitality and Catering at Shrewsbury College from 2011 until 2014 and now works in the family business as a Chef, she said: ““We did a lot of market research prior to opening the business and we continue to do so. We noticed a gap in the market in Shrewsbury for traditional, homemade pies using locally-sourced produce. We know that ‘old-style, foods’ are very on trend at the moment, especially in cities like London, so we wanted to mix local, homely foods with a cosmopolitan slant.”
“We’re all really excited about this new venture and I feel privileged to be in a position to help run three businesses. I wouldn’t be in the position I am now with the experience I’ve gained in the catering industry if it wasn’t for my course at Shrewsbury College.
“The course gave me the skills and knowledge of the industry, and it is where I made my first pie! It was more intense than I thought it was going to be. I thought that as my parents are both in the catering industry, I already had a lot of the knowledge I needed – but I soon learnt I was wrong.”
“The experience of the lecturers and the knowledge they passed on was vital. As soon as I got my qualification I was employed as a chef de parte at the Silverton.”
The chefs in the family are always coming up with, and creating new pie recipes. The family also encourage ideas and feedback from customers. Current sweet and savoury pie flavours include; sausage and onion, all-day breakfast, lamb curry, lemon meringue, chocolate brownie, and many more.
Kimberley Jones, sister of Bethany, oversees the sales, retail and marketing of the business, she said: “I’m the odd one out in the family because I didn’t study Catering at Shrewsbury College. But it does mean I have the experience required when it comes to retail. I was a manager of a store for a few years so have the necessary retail knowledge.
“We pride ourselves on being a local business which supports other local business and produce suppliers. We’ve only been open a few months but have been overwhelmed with the support we’ve received from local businesses and our suppliers, many of whom have already become loyal customers. We’ve noticed a considerable response from students in the town centre and the fact our pies can be bought hot for convenience or cold to freeze has meant some of our customers have been buying their favourite flavours in bulk!
“Our most successful deal at the moment is our ‘π meal deal’, which includes a hot or cold pie, a cookie and a drink for £3.14 (the number of π). We also offer taster sessions, where customers can try before they buy, at no added cost!”
To try out the variety of freshly made pies on offer at The π Theory, or to find out more you can visit the store in The Parade Centre, behind St Mary’s Church and follow them on Facebook: ThePyeTheory and on Twitter: @pie_theory
For more information about Hospitality & Catering courses at Shrewsbury College, please visit the website www.shrewsbury.ac.uk call 01743 342411 or you can follow the College on Facebook: ShrewsburyCollege, Twitter: @ShrewsburyCol and Instagram: shrewsbury_college