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Birthday celebrations at The Last Crumb

Helen and Paula

Best friends Paula Chapman and Helen Collier are celebrating a year of running The Last Crumb café and work hub and say they’ve “found their groove.”

The biggest challenge for the popular Stoke Newington start-up has been finding the right chef to help run the kitchen and they say the answer lay in taking the unusual step of opting for a senior sous chef, instead of a Head Chef.

Helen said: “While our core team has been with us since the beginning, finding the right head chef in those early days was a challenge and, as each new chef wanted to make their mark on the menu, so we risked losing the favourite dishes that customers kept returning for.

“Now we have Gaia Colloridi, a wonderful Italian senior sous chef who works with me in the kitchen. She works her magic to create fabulous specials but we’re also building a reputation for consistently serving delicious pastries and brunches.”

(Carol singers outside The Last Crumb)

Upstairs in The Last Crumb is a café, while downstairs is a work hub hosting a range of freelancers and professionals working in media, fashion, childcare, retail and more. There’s a large meeting room and workers there are offered their fill of filter coffees and pastries made on site.

Paula added: “It has been a learning curve – launching a business was far harder than I’d ever envisaged and the day-to-day logistics of coordinating a staff of 12 were challenging at first, but we’ve found our groove and are having so much fun!”

The Last Crumb recently started serving roast lunches on Sundays, with meat provided by Meat N16. Their salted caramel and peanut ‘cruffins’ (croissant muffins) are the talk of the town!

(Breakfast at The Last Crumb)

Earlier this year they teamed up with Inspiring Margot to run a series of successful Women’s Only events, bringing inspirational speakers and local women together for a night of networking, nibbles and fizz.

Jenna Fansa of the Local Buyers Club, said: “We love the Last Crumb – they seem to have found just the right relaxed vibe that means everyone feels welcome and the food is always great.”

They are now selling their own olive oil in the café, produced from olive groves at Helen’s villa in Greece.

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