After months of blind tasting, deliberation and judging, the shortlist of finalists for the 2015 Food & Drink Devon Awards have been announced, with the winners revealed at a ceremony in Exeter on Monday 5th October. Entries from across the county included 144 products, 38 producers, 41 hospitality and 6 retail establishments judged by experts from the industry.
Michael Smith, chairman of Food & Drink Devon since 2008, is thrilled with the quality of food and drink brought to the judging table. "We champion Devon's producers and food and drink industry, and this year in particular competition has been tight with standards greatly increased," he says. "As a county we have so much outstanding produce on offer and the quality of hospitality across the board is also second to none."
In celebration of Devon's best produce, Platinum awards will be given to any of the 144 tasted products given a perfect score of 100%, Gold awards go to products achieving 91-99%, and Silver to those scoring 85-90%.
There's enormous variety this year on the producer shortlist for the Taste of Devon Product award, with everything from shellfish to rare breed meats, artisan spirits and craft beers, with ice creams from both North and South Devon plus traditional Christmas puddings represented.
"As customers get all the more discerning, choosing provenance and traceability over mass-produced food and drink, our independent shops and businesses can really shine," continues Michael. "Ultimately that is why it is so important we all support our local fishermen, farmers, delis, cafes, chefs and artisans."
Two well-known butchers, Eversfield Organic and The Well Hung Meat Company, go head to head in the category for Best Online Retailer. Best Retailer will be awarded to either Ashburton Delicatessen, Shaldon's butcher G.T. Orsman or Quickes Farm Shop near Exeter. Producers on the Best Packaging shortlist are Bays Brewery, rapeseed oil producers Bell & Loxton and Devon Distillery's DAPPA.
Establishments on the Taste of Devon Hospitality shortlist include The Horn of Plenty at Gulworthy and Prince Hall Hotel, near Two Bridges on Dartmoor for Best Fine Dining Restaurant. Vying for Best Restaurant status is Salcombe's The Crab Shed, The Mission in Plymouth and Riverford Field Kitchen. As well as Best Hotel Restaurant, Bistro and Best Café categories, there are three businesses hoping to win Best Takeaway: Good Game, The Posh Kebab Company and Two Coast County.
The movers and makers of Devon's food and drink industry will attend the black tie awards ceremony to find out who the winners are for each category after a drinks reception and three-course meal created from food and drink produced by Food & Drink Devon members – all the ingredients for a fabulous night on Monday 5th October 2015 at Exeter Golf & Country Club starting at 6.45pm.
A special thanks goes to the proud sponsors of the Food & Drink Devon Awards including their exclusive media sponsor taste buds magazine, Hedgerow Print, Luscombe Drinks, The Venus Company and Stephens Scown.
For more information, please visit www.lovetheflavour.co.uk and follow @lovetheflavour on Twitter.
Notes to the editor:
1. Food & Drink Devon was founded with the aim of representing like-minded businesses dedicated to producing food and drink of the very highest quality. The Food & Drink Devon association is committed to continuously achieving its mission – to make 'Love The Flavour' a nationally recognised brand for outstanding sustainable food and drink.
Food & Drink Devon Awards Shortlist 2015
Taste of Devon Product category shortlist
Bell & Loxton
Salcombe Crab Traders
Bulleigh Elms Farm Shop
Chunk of Devon
Sharpham Partnership Ltd
Luscombe Drinks Ltd
South Devon Chilli Farm
Lyme Bay Winery
South Hams Brewery
Cobley Farm Produce
Dartmoor Farmers Ltd
Partridge Farm Meats
Devon Distillery Ltd
Quickes Traditional Ltd
Verney's Molton Ice
Favis of Salcombe
Georgie Porgie's Puddings
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Best Packaging category shortlist
Bell & Loxton
Taste of Devon Hospitality category shortlist
Best Fine Dining Restaurant: The Horn of Plenty, Gulworthy
Prince Hall Hotel, near Two Bridges
Best Restaurant: The Crab Shed, Salcombe
The Mission, Plymouth
Riverford Field Kitchen, Staverton
Best Hotel Restaurant: Broomhill Art Hotel, Barnstaple
Buckland Tout-Saints Hotel, Kingsbridge
Two Bridges Hotel, Dartmoor
Best Bistro: The Cove Café Bar, Hope Cove
Killerton Kitchen Restaurant, Broadclyst
On the Waterfront, Exeter
Best Gastro Pub: Bronx Bar & Cue, Teignmouth
Pig on the Hill, Bideford
Best Pub: The Cove Café Bar, Hope Cove
The Elizabethan, Luton
The Pig & Whistle, Totnes
Best Café: A la Ronde Tea Rooms, Exmouth
Rosemoor Garden Kitchen, Great Torrington
Quickes Farm Kitchen, Newton St Cyres
Best Takeaway: Good Game
The Posh Kebab Company
Two Coast County
Taste of Devon Retail category shortlist
Best Retailer: Ashburton Delicatessen
Quickes Farm Shop
Best Online Retailer: Eversfield Organic
The Well Hung Meat Company
For further information, photography or an interview with Michael Smith, chairman of Food & Drink Devon, please contact:
Hayley Reynolds at RAW PR and Marketing - email@example.com;
Telephone: 01548 550 429 / 07887 474 104
Twitter: @HayleyJReynolds / @RawSW
Press release distributed by Pressat on behalf of Pressat Wire, on Thursday 24 September, 2015. For more information subscribe and follow https://pressat.co.uk/