The story of DERE STREET is savoury and sweet. In 1999 while spending a two week holiday at BOTELET, a 17th century Manor Cottage in Cornwall, England, David Cooper, his wife Robin and their three children got to experience the richness of life in the English countryside while enjoying the comfort foods of David’s native England. Call it a mid- life crisis or perhaps fate, those two weeks would change the Cooper’s future. David had been looking for a new direction and had found it, turning his passion for food and baking into a great family business. “I have always thought that life is an adventure, a constant journey”. “We are all “just passing through” and should make the most of our time here”.
David was born and raised in northern England, a land of ancient history and untamable wilderness that exists to this day. It is the land of Hadrian’s Wall, Roman ruins, Geordies, Newcastle United and….DERE STREET, an ancient Roman road built in the 1st Century AD under the Governor Agricola. While much of the road today dots the English countryside as ruins along walking trails, a good portion of it is the footprint of the A1, the Great North Road linking England to Scotland. It was David’s wife Robin’s idea to call the company Dere Street hoping it would become the family’s footprint to a great new enterprise.
The company was founded in 2004 and like most small businesses; it was started at home. Working out of the kitchen they peddled their scones and shortbreads to small bakeries in Fairfield County, CT. They were well received to say the least! Why? Because they make their products the way they are truly meant to be, flavourful and all natural. Add to that a flare for incorporating exotic ingredients, bountiful fruits from the Northwest and Northeast coasts of the US and fresh herbs and spices from around the world. Dere Street’s customers have discovered a product line that literally sells itself. Dere Street now manufactures their line of British baked goods from a new state of the art commercial commissary in Danbury, CT. products that include scones, shortbread, puddings and many other British pastries and desserts. The company’s line of products are sold to food service customers and upscale retailers throughout the USA. Dere Street’s blueprint for success is taken from the Romans 2000 years ago as they undertook the building of DERE STREET…hard work, an untamable spirit, quality and pride will produce a product that will withstand the passage of time.
Sadly, David’s wife Robin passed away on February 12, 2014 at the tender age of 58 after a five year battle with ovarian cancer. In Robin’s name David continues the family dream of making Dere Street a success.