Thank you for visiting this website. I hope you find it interesting and worthwhile.

Let me tell you a story beforehand and maybe you will understand why I feel that taking over Dakin & Company (No. 1, London) was like having a mantle placed on my shoulders. When I was wholesaling wine in 1979, I called in at a quaint shop at 333 Central Market, Farringdon Street, London EC1. I had worked for Oddbins under Ahmed Pochee in 1970 just down the road and knew the amount of business that he had generated. The two elderly people who ran it, Lily and Harry were still there and possibly the same cat had pride of place, sleeping on the counter. Ownership had changed however during this period and the new owners had used most of their money to buy the business and were stuck for credit. Slightly green as a salesman, being my first year, I sold them ten cases of Liebfraumilch, a wine which was the flavour of the day, and help them merchandise it (put a label with a description on it and a competitive price). I came back and was told the wine had sold out very quickly. Expecting payment and another order I called back several times and got fobbed off. Eventually I was allowed up the spiral staircase to the office. The cheque had to be postdated. The whole experience had been a nightmare for the owners. They were glad to get their capital back as they thought they had been sold a pup when buying this shop. As you can gather, I bought the shop from them and thus started an adventure of discovery where I realised that I was only treading in somebody else’s footsteps and that they had been there, done everything before me far better than I could ever hope to do.` You will see that the pup was a full pedigree bulldog that had seen the rise and fall of the British Empire and much more and yet had an appetite for little more glory.

There is still one mission left. That is to market Dakin & Company (No 1 London) as fine purveyors of Tea and Coffee

André Trépel