Bristol-based importers and wholesalers of fine foods from Spain, Mevalco has told The Caterer of its plans to expand its business in foodservice, with a refreshed branding and additional development funding.
Co-founders David Menéndez and Cristina Callejón have joined forces with new investors Caroline Hole-Jones, managing director of Canny PR, formerly managing director of Splash Communications and Justin Slawson, most recently an investor director with Ferns Coffee and one-time co-owner of the Cheese Cellar.
With Hole-Jones and Slawson on board, Menéndez and Callejón plan to build on the success of their specialist Spanish food company by bringing in more clients who will benefit from their range of over 400 carefully selected ingredients from over 60 suppliers across Spain.
The company which started in 2007 and approaching its 10th anniversary deals directly with the Spanish farmers who are specialists in what they do: they farm their own land; grow their own olives and herd their sheep, cattle or pigs.
Most of their farmers go to the next stage and make their own finished products, including cheeses, table olives and cured meats guaranteeing an authentic product. Some of the products imported into the UK are integral to keeping rural communities alive, especially in the sparsely populated inland Spain and in mountainous areas.
The company supplies products including mature beef or ‘Old Cow' in a variety of heritage Spanish breeds all of them at least eight years old, including Rubia Gallega, a breed famous for the marbling of its meat. Other products include Ibérico Pork Bellota Presa, Ibérico Pork Bellota Secreto, Belloterra Ibérico ham, mini chorizo picante, octopus and Pyrenean lamb, and wines and sherries from wine wholesalers Morgenrot.
Mevalco's goal is to showcase the vibrant food culture of Spain, and Menéndez and Callejón work closely with their chef customers to fulfil their needs. One such restaurant is the Lido in Bristol, run by chef-patron Freddy Bird who has won acclaim for his distinct style of cooking, a take on Moorish and Mediterranean cuisine with a strong focus on provenance.
"Forming great relationships with suppliers is imperative, and it could not have been easier with Mevalco, said Bird.
"Over the years I've become great friends with David and Cristina but what's kept me as a customer is their absolute devotion to searching out the very best Spanish produce. They've taken the time to really understand our needs at the restaurant and constantly bring new and exciting products to my attention. The quality of produce is what makes the difference to any restaurant and Mevalco's quality is second to none! On top of this, they couldn't be more helpful when it comes to regular supply and helping us out last minute when we find ourselves short after a busy weekend!"
Bird has recently concluded co-presenting the Channel 4 series Hidden Restaurants alongside Michel Roux Jr and is also executive chef at both Bristol's Glassboat and Three Brothers Burgers restaurant and will launch the Thames Lido restaurant late in the autumn 2017.