Two Yorkshire-based food and drink producers have received an order for their collaboration ‘beer cake’ from The Plaza hotel in New York.

The Exquisitely Rich Fruit Cake, handmade by Leeds-based Exquisite Handmade Cakes, has as its key ingredient Ilkley Brewery’s award-winning Stout Mary giving an intensely rich flavour.

Bursting with plump vine fruits and finished with dark Belgian chocolate shavings, the cake has strong fruit flavours and a subtle stout overtone giving it a luxurious dark chocolate toffee background.

Chris Ives from Ilkley Brewery and Viv Parry from Exquisite Handmade Cakes met on the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses programme, run in partnership with Leeds University Business School, back in 2011. Last year, they joined forces to create this unique beer infused cake and 10 months later, the two businesses have received their first overseas order which will be arriving at the six star Manhattan hotel in time for Christmas.

Interest from the landmark Big Apple hotel came about after Viv visited New York earlier this year as part of a UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) trade mission, supported by Santander Bank. A meeting with The Plaza’s Food Hall, which specialises in European-inspired foods, resulted in a 120 unit order of the Exquisitely Rich Fruit Cake which will soon be enjoyed by The Plaza’s global customer base.

Speaking about this transatlantic order, Chris Ives from Ilkley Brewery, said: “Viv and I saw a fantastic opportunity to collaborate last year and it’s hugely exciting to see the partnership pay off in such a grand way.

“Ilkley beers are gradually gaining international exposure in countries like Sweden and Canada but to have our brand showcased in one of the world’s most prestigious hotels in this famous city, is an incredible coup; one which we’re absolutely thrilled with.”

Viv Parry, owner of Exquisite Handmade Cakes, added: “Traditionally, the fruit in cakes like these is soaked in brandy first but we wanted to do something different by infusing the fruit with Stout Mary. Our experiment paid off and the finished result is a mouth-wateringly indulgent fruit cake topped with the finest Belgian chocolate.

“I’m sure the cake will be a hit with The Plaza’s esteemed clientele both as a delicious accompaniment to The Plaza Food Hall’s beverages or, thanks to its specially made tin, as a Christmas gift.”

The Exquisitely Rich Fruit Cake is the first in a range of luxury tinned fruit cakes to be developed by Exquisite Handmade Cakes, who are currently in the process of developing a gluten-free version along with other exciting flavour profiles.

Ilkley Brewery was recently crowned the winner of the Newspaper Society’s national Local Business Accelerators campaign and is currently being mentored by Dragon’s Den star, Deborah Meaden, to help the business flourish further. Exquisite Handmade Cakes has also been shortlisted in the Manufacturing category of Yorkshire Post’s Business Excellence Awards which will be revealed next month.

UK customers wishing to try the Exquisitely Rich Fruit Cake can order tins direct from Ilkley Brewery and Exquisite Handmade Cakes.

To find out more about Ilkley Brewery, visit, read the brewery’s blog or follow on Twitter @Ilkleybrewery

For further information on Exquisite Handmade Cakes, visit or follow on Twitter @ExqHmadeCakes