Two Leamington brothers have fulfilled a lifelong dream by bringing a drink they used to enjoy as children in Nigeria to the UK market.
Mike and Garry Robinson have bottled and are commercially selling a drink known as ‘Ikoyi Chapmans’, a soft, fizzy drink made with citrus fruit and bitters.
They grew up with their parents in Nigeria, where the drink was hand-mixed by locals. Mike and Garry would often drink it as children.
The brothers moved back to the UK to board at Warwick School, but would often return to Nigeria during the school holidays and would have the drink again while they were there.
Mike said: “After leaving school, Garry and I both became professional squash players but it has always been our dream to commercially produce this drink.”
After their squash careers came to a close around five years ago, they decided to try and make their dream a reality.
Mike said: “We’ve always had a dream of bringing it to market.
“We went to various drinks companies, but many only want an energy drink or a fruit drink. We were taking them a drink that had a unique taste.”
Eventually, drinks company Dohler got on board, and after a bit of experimentation with the flavour and finding a bottling company, the drink was ready to produce.
In April, the first bottles finally came off the production line.
Mike said: “It was a long, drawn-out process, so it was emotional to see our drink go round the bottling line.
“We were just absolutely elated - we can’t believe it.”
The drink is being sold in a few bars and cafes in Leamington and Warwick, such as the Cape of Good Hope and Coffee Architects.
And the brothers are hoping to start selling it in supermarkets soon.