- 42 awards have been given out to the best West Country food and drink businesses across Cornwall, Somerset, Dorset, Wiltshire, and Gloucestershire.
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On Thursday the 13th of September, The Great Hall at Exeter University was host to this year’s Taste of the West Awards ceremony. The awards, which have been running for over 25 years, contended with entries of over 1,000 products and 330 hospitality and retail classes. With an audience of more than 400 food fans and the help of BBC television presenter Victoria Graham, 38 businesses in the South West food and drink business received awards.
The ceremony featured 12 awards in the hospitality and retail classes, 25 for the product categories, and some additional awards such as the South West Producer of the Year (sponsored by Porter Dodson) that went to Devon-based Denhay Farms Ltd, the Best Newcomer Award (sponsored by The Tracklement Company) that went to Bristol-based Step and Stone, and the newly added Best Branding Award (sponsored by The Collaborators) that went to Dorset-based Conker Spirit. As a celebration of food on the whole, the day began with a drinks and canape reception, followed by a 5-course lunch that used more than 60 Taste of the West award-winning products, and ended, of course, with the awards ceremony. Devon-based Sandford Orchards won the celebrated Supreme Champion Product Award for their St Louis Dry Hopped Cider and the No 1 Pace to Go for 2018 went to New Farm Restaurant in Somerset. A full list of winners can be accessed at :tasteofthewest.co.uk/awards
According to John Sheaves, Chief Executive of Taste of the West: “These awards underpin our core values and strengthen our regional brand, a brand which is attracting considerable interest from new markets – both nationally and internationally, and is now helping to attract more and more visitors to our region each year so playing a major part in our visitor economy. Our sincere congratulations to all the finalists and overall winners, and to all of our valued sponsors and partners who continue to support us.”
Entries for the Taste of the West Award 2018/2019 for hospitality and retail establishments are now open, with food and drinks products opening in mid-October: tasteofthewest.co.uk/business/awards