I've known these two Northern characters for nearly ten years and was not at all surprised when the announcement came that they were setting up their own business. With Tom's background as a chef and Finbarr's experience in restaurant and hotel management, The Black Pearl Oyster Company was born from two people at the top of their game, doing what they are most passionate about.
Oh... And did I forget to mention ... They're brothers!
So what's it all about? Well, The Black Pearl Oyster Company specialises in high end champagne and British oysters for a host of different events. Far from your average caterers, they use only the finest, locally sourced British oysters, and their highly trained 'shuckers' mingle amongst your guests and serve up some sophistication and elegance. Whether that be a wedding, a corporate party or even a specific oyster event, the lads work with hosts and event organisers to make sure everything runs smoothly.
We're still waiting for the invitation to come and do a tasting (hint), but in the meantime the lads were kind enough to fill out our Q&A.
Check out their website here.
How long have you been freelance/working for yourself #goingsolo?
Describe what you do in five words… GO!
The finest British oysters (only needed 4!)
Our dad has always loved oysters so we were exposed to them at a young age whilst holidaying in France. A few years ago we went back to France to an island off the Atlantic coast called Aileron that is famous for oysters and we fell in love with them again. Also many people don't know that British oysters are the best in the world however are mostly exported to France and China. We felt it was a travesty that our country was missing out on this home grown produce so we set about bringing them back to the British table!
What made you decide to take the plunge?
The desire to work for ourselves.
What’s the best bit about being your own boss?
Being in control of your own destiny and the opportunity to work with my brother.
What's it like working with your brother?
We have worked together for a few years at various jobs so we are used to it now! There are pros and cons but overall we make a good team and we compliment each other well. And it's really fun to be able to work with each other!
What’s the biggest pain in the arse?
Admin, finances, paperwork.
What’s the grand plan/big idea?
To open our own restaurant.
What’s the best bit of advice you could give someone about to #gosolo?
Surround yourself with good people and get as many favours as you can!
Where do you get your inspiration from? (person, place, action)
Our parents gave us a passion for food and restaurants from an early age, taking us on holidays to France and bringing us out to eat with them.
If we could give you one thing right now (not a wad of cash) that would help your business out the most, what would it be?
More hours in the day!
Hindsight is a wonderful thing - discuss.
Finances and accounts are a lot easier to manage on a weekly basis compared to monthly. Don't wait for a huge pile of receipts before doing your accounts! Also don't do too many things for free when starting out!