A glorious pairing...

April 30, 2022

A glorious pairing...

In order to celebrate the arrival of the 2022 Special Edition Lamy Strawberries and Cream design, we thought we'd do some research on the history of this iconic pair...

Cardinal Wolsey seems to be the man credited with inventing the strawberries and cream combo, he was a powerful figure in the court of King Henry VIII. Seeing as Henry VIII’s court fed 600 lords and ladies twice a day, you can imagine the chef’s desperate need for a pudding which was quick, tasty, and ideally required no cooking whatsoever.

So appeared strawberries and cream which, legend has it, was first served at a banquet hosted in 1509. So in fact it was the  chef at Hampton Court who likely whisked the idea together, and not Cardinal Wolsey. Poor chef!

Of course, whatever the King ate became fashionable. 

How strawberries and cream came to be such an integral part of Wimbledon remains a bit of a mystery. There is no historical connection between the fruit and tennis. But during the tournament in a few months time, nearly 150,000 servings of strawberries will be consumed.

"It was probably two things -- strawberries were in season at the time the tournament was played, and in Victorian England they had become a fashionable thing to eat,"

Johnny Perkins, head of PR for the All England Club said in 2015.

According to English Heritage, strawberries and cream were served at the very first Wimbledon tournament in 1877. The development of the railways during the 19th century meant the fruit could be picked and transported to London on the same day to ensure the utmost freshness. This tradition continues today. At Wimbledon, strawberries are picked at 4.00 am on the day of serving, collected from the packing plant at 9.00am and are delivered to the Club at 11.00 am for inspection! 

And so strawberries became entwined with Wimbledon. According to the Wimbledon website, 140,000 servings of strawberries and 10,000 litres of cream were served at the 2015 tournament. The strawberries come in a small box called a “punnet” containing a minimum of 10 berries. A little more than 8,600 punnets were served per day in 2012. The berries are often paired with a glass of Pimm's Cup or champagne.

Strawberries are the No. 1 single food item served at the All England Club, though fans did partake in plenty of other edible goodies:

How very British indeed. 

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