Celebrations will be taking place across the county tonight, Thursday 13 March, as the winners of The Taste Of Kent Awards 2014 are announced at a black tie dinner held at the Kent County Showground.
The winners have been selected by an expert panel of judges from three finalists who were shortlisted for each award category. The shortlisted finalists received the most votes in each award category and had been nominated and voted for by members of the public. From Rochester to Folkestone, the people of Kent have chosen the tastes, flavours, products, produce and venues that they have enjoyed the most over the last 12 months.
The winners are:
Best Kent Juice Producer, sponsored by Kent County Council
Winner: Little Stour Orchard, Margate
Biddenden Farm Pressed Apple Juice, Biddenden
Newlands Juices, Faversham
Best Kentish Beer, sponsored by Rix & Kay Solicitors
Winner: Genesis – Goody Ales, Herne
Farriers 1606 – Old Forge Brewery, The Farriers Arms, Mersham
Gadds’ No. 3 Ramsgate Brewery, Ramsgate
Best Kentish Cider or Perry, sponsored by Wilkins Kennedy FKC
Winner: Duddas Tun Cider – Pine Trees Farm, Doddington
Strong Kentish cider – Biddenden Vineyard, Biddenden
10 ACRE Orchard cider – Little Stour Orchard, Margate
Best Kentish Wine, sponsored by Investaco
Winner: Ortega 2012 – Biddenden Vineyards, Biddenden
Bacchus – Chapel Down, Tenterden
English Rose – Chapel Down, Tenterden
Kent Artisan Food Producer of the Year, sponsored by Shopper Anonymous
Winner: Kent Fine Foods, Gillingham
Samovar, Nonington, Dover
Simply Ice Cream, Ashford
Kent Butcher or Meat Producer of the Year, sponsored by sff
Winner: Court Farm Butchery & Country Larder, Halling, Rochester
Chandler & Dunn, Ash, Canterbury
Kent Dining Pub of the Year, sponsored by Opies
Winner: The Ferry House Inn, Isle of Sheppey
The George Inn, Molash
The Three Tuns, Lower Halstow
Kent Farmers Market of the Year, sponsored by Hadlow College
Winner: Cliftonville Farmers Market
Rochester Farmers Market
Tonbridge Farmers Market
Best Kent Food Product, sponsored by KFF
Winner: 10 ACRE apple cider vinegar
Kent Fishmonger of the Year, sponsored by Chapman’s of Sevenoaks Ltd
Winner: Mobile Fresh Fish & Farm Shop
Fruits De Mer, Broadstairs
Folkestone Trawlers, Folkestone
Kent Local Food Retailer of the Year, sponsored by NFU Mutual
Winner: Macknade Fine Foods, Faversham
Quex Barn, Birchington
Whitstable Produce Store, Whitstable
Kent Restaurant of the Year, sponsored by Henkelman UK Ltd
Winner: Rocksalt, Folkestone
The Ambrette, Margate
Wyatt & Jones, Broadstairs
Garden of England Champions Top Fruit, sponsored by BTF Partnership
- Winner - Top Apple: Gala variety Kate Langridge, Mallions Farm, Marden
- Winner - Garden of England Champions Top Pear: Concorde variety D & C Stevens, Elm Farm, Lower Halstow
Garden of England Champion Cherry and soft fruit, sponsored by East Malling Research (“EMR”)
- Cherries – Elverton Farms, Faversham for their Merchant variety
- Strawberries – Langdon Manor Farm, Faversham for their Jubilee variety
- Raspberries – Newmafruit, Chartham, Canterbury for their Glen Ample variety
Kent Food, Farming and Landscape Award, sponsored by Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
- Winner - Court Farm, Halling, Rochester
Kent Food Product Category Awards, sponsored by Shepherd Neame
- Winner Dairy Class – Winterdale Shaw, Winterdale Cheesemakers
- Winner Ambient Class – 10 ACRE Cider Vinegar, Little Stour Orchard
- Winner Bakery & Confectionery Class – Honey Cake with Kentish Honey, Samovar
- Winner Prepared Food Class – Kentish beef & vegetable pasty, S W Doughty
- Winner Catering Class – Dangus beef fillet, Gribble Bridge Meats
- Catering Highly Commended – Strong Wholemeal Flour, Pure Kent
- Dairy Highly Commended – Chaucers Camembert, Cheesemakers of Canterbury
Produced in Kent has also made a special award to Sian Holt, Managing Director, Fudge Kitchen.
Stephanie Durling of Produced in Kent comments:
We would like to thank the thousands of people who took the time to vote in this, our tenth year. We are especially delighted that nearly 500 local businesses across the county were nominated for the awards. The battle for first place amongst the finalists has hard, with a really tough decision for our judges. The standard of products, produce, shops, pubs and restaurants is very high and Kent is firmly becoming established as a foody destination in the UK.
This year there were a number of businesses that were new to the list of finalists including: Newlands Juices, Goody Ales, Samovar, Chandler & Dunn, The Ferry House Inn, The Three Tuns, Rochester Farmers Market, Fruits De Mer, Folkestone Trawlers, Whitstable Produce Store, Rocksalt and Wyatt & Jones.
Many of last years winners were once again in this year’s top 3 including: Little Stour Orchards’ Juice, Gadds No 3, Biddenden Ortega, The George Inn, Quex Barn, The Ambrette.
Stephanie Durling concludes:
Tonight’s Awards were a fantastic showcase for Kent’s food, drink and farming. The Taste of Kent awards are the ultimate stamp of approval from members of the public and confirmation of food and drink excellence. We would like to thank Jason Freedman of The Minnis Bar and Restaurant who prepared the delicious three-course meal for tonight’s dinner and the Kent Event Centre at the Kent Showground for their valuable support.
The awards are sponsored by Vertex Law, part of Cripps Harries Hall LLP. James Beatton, a partner of the firm, says:
Kent is well known for the excellence of its food and drink and the Taste of Kent Awards are a great way to celebrate the skill and passion of those involved in the industry. This is the third year that Vertex Law has been the headline sponsor and as a business that is committed both to Kent and its food and drink industry, we are delighted to be involved again.
This year’s awards are run with sponsorship from Biddenden Vineyards, BTF Partnership, Chapel Down Winery, Chapmans of Sevenoaks, EMR (East Malling Research), Hadlow College, Henkleman UK Ltd, Kent Downs and High Weald AONBs, KCC (Kent County Council), kff (Kent Frozen Foods), NFU Mutual, Opies, Rix & Kay Solicitors, Shopper Anonymous, Shepherd Neame, sff (Stephen’s Fresh Foods), Vertex Law, part of Cripps Harries Hall LLP, and Wilkins Kennedy FKC.
Pictures and further details are available at Taste of Kent Awards and Produced in Kent.