Sisters use their culinary passion to make Homemade by Thelma’s a success
Drive is essential to make a business work, but passion is what’s needed to make it a success.
Three years ago Sheffield sisters Emily and May Rowley inherited some money following the passing of their much-loved grandma. Rather than doing what most their age would – blow it – the siblings came up with a business plan for an exciting new venture.
Both were on career paths that didn’t give them a buzz, but where they found they did get a kick was in the kitchen. So they bottled that culinary passion and poured it into delivering fresh, honest food to Sheffield folk.
They opened up a café named Thelma’s on Sharrowvale Road and built a loyal customer base, before an opportunity arose last year to take their venture up a notch. Some acquaintances were selling up their café/bistro business, Homemade, in Nether Edge and gave the girls first refusal.
A bigger space and a new challenge - the Rowley sisters like a challenge – meant that Homemade by Thelma’s was born.
The duo introduced their home-cooked breakfasts and lunches to the venue and took on its bistro nights that have since become so popular they’re now held every Friday.
We went along to see what all the fuss is about.
At night the cafe’s attractive pendant lighting is dimmed, candles are lit and the food on the menu is taken up a gear.
Seasonal produce determines the menu’s dishes and Thelma’s caters for all with meat, veggie, fish, vegan and gluten-free options. Why? Because people with dietary requirements are also entitled to a good night out.
It’s £16.50 for two courses and £20 for three, plus a £2 corkage fee per bring your own bottle.
To start I select the duck liver, apricot and brandy pate with toast and tomato chutney, while he ordered the Morecambe Bay potted brown shrimp and toasted Irish wheaten bread. He found it a tad fiddly but I was quick to coat the chunky toast in the smooth pate and top with sweet chutney - a winning combination.
For main my partner fancied the beef and Stilton pie with celeriac and mustard mash and honey roasted beetroot, but he’s not crazy about cheese. “That’s not a problem, we can make you one up without the Stilton,” offered our friendly waiter.
I chose the smoked haddock fishcakes with a creamy parsley sauce on a bed of sautéed leeks with wilted spinach. We enjoy the flavours of both and note how filling the dishes are, though we can’t resist dessert.
The chocolate and raspberry mousse made me wilt like the spinach in my main - heaven. Meanwhile my partner is a fan of an affogato and gave Thelma’s the thumbs up.
And the name above the door? It belongs to the lady who made it all possible - grandma Thelma.
Venue: Homemade by Thelma’s
Address: Nether Edge Road, Sheffield
Contact: Tel. 07774 013438
Star rating out of six: