1. Horseshoe Homer copy

Pub chain adds unique twist to nation’s favourite summer dessert

The UK’s number one pub company Greene King has teamed up with Derbyshire doughnut sensation Project D to launch a doughnut filled with strawberries, cream and ice-cream.

The Horseshoe Homer, priced at £6.49, has been added to the new summer menu at Greene King’s chain of 249 Hungry Horse pubs. The menu challenges people to either “share” the sweet treat or “go solo”.

Baked in the shape of a horseshoe to match the pub chain’s logo and topped with pink icing and colourful sprinkles to mirror Project D’s best-selling Homer doughnut, it is the first ice-cream-filled doughnut to be produced on such a large scale.

With the addition of strawberries and whipped cream, the dessert is tipped to challenge England’s traditional summer dessert enjoyed at fetes, regattas and tennis championships across the nation.

Project D’s collaboration with Greene King, which will see it manufacturing thousands of Horseshoe Homers each week, marks yet another coup for the bakery brand that has previously partnered with the likes of British Airways, Amazon, Coca-Cola and Brewdog.

Max Poynton, marketing director and co-founder of Project D, said: “This is absolutely huge for Project D. It’s like winning a Grand Slam for us!

“Although we have big ambitions, Project D is still a relatively small company in comparison to Greene King. To work alongside such a massive pub chain – one that’s been going in the UK since the 18th Century - is just amazing.”

Hungry Horse is just one of 14 brands owned by Greene King, which was founded 224 years ago in Bury St. Edmunds, Suffolk. In total, the group operates 3,100 pubs, restaurants and hotels as well as brewing some of Britain’s best-selling beers, including Greene King IPA and Abbot Ale. 

The Horseshoe Homer recipe underwent months of testing at Project D’s state-of-the-art research and development facility in Corby, Northamptonshire, to meet with Greene King’s requirements.

“It took tonnes of development with our team of nutritional scientists to arrive at the perfect result. But we’re all delighted with it – and to see the Project D brand on the new Hungry Horse summer menu is just fantastic.

“The addition of whipped cream and fresh strawberries was yet another challenge that we overcame. But I don’t think anyone who tries a Horseshoe Homer will look at strawberries and cream in the same way again.” 

Max’s statement appeared to ring true when he visited The Merlin, a Hungry Horse pub at Pride Park, Derby, on the day the new menu was launched last week.

“We popped in to try one of our Horseshoe Homers, just to see how well they had travelled. But they were completely sold out on the first day by the time we got there. I guess that’s the best test we could have hoped for!”

Sarah Williams, senior marketing manager at Hungry Horse, said: “As anticipated, the Horseshoe Homer is proving extremely popular with guests and the feedback we’ve had so far has been incredible.

“We’re big on quality and flavour and we knew Project D would be able to deliver just that to our new menu. I’d urge everyone to visit their local Hungry Horse as soon as possible to get their hands on this taste sensation.”

Project D was co-founded from a kitchen table in 2018 by former schoolfriends Max Poynton, Matthew Bond and Jacob Watts.

Having grown to a company with a turnover of almost £3m, Project D recently launched a successful crowdfunding bid as part of plans to quadruple its turnover in the next three years. The expansion plans will include the opening of permanent retail stores across the UK.

To find out more about Project D, visit www.projectdoughnut.co.uk. To discover your nearest Hungry Horse pub, visit www.hungryhorse.co.uk.