KENT YOUNG CHEF / TASTE OF KENT AWARDS

The winners of The Taste of Kent Awards 2014

_Z1A1851Celebrations took place across the county on Thursday 13 March, as the winners of The Taste Of Kent Awards 2014 were 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

“We are thrilled to win for the second year running.”

Finalists:

Biddenden Farm Pressed Apple Juice, Biddenden Vineyards

Newlands Juices, Faversham

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Best Kentish Beer, sponsored by Rix & Kay Solicitors

Winner: Genesis – Goody Ales, Herne

“First brew and first time to have won this year. We are really humbled to be included in this prestigious award for Kent – thank you to the public who voted for us and our beer.”

Finalists:

Farriers 1606 – Old Forge Brewery, The Farriers Arms, Mersham

Gadds’ No. 3 Ramsgate Brewery, Ramsgate

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Best Kentish Cider or Perry, sponsored by Wilkins Kennedy FKC

Winner: Duddas Tun Cider – Pine Trees Farm, Doddington

“We won last year for first time and won again this year which is terrific. We were striving to be better this year and it is so nice to be recognised. Nice for the team to have made the extra effort and to be recognised for it. Still only a small maker and these awards make a huge difference to us.”

Finalists:

Strong Kentish cider – Biddenden Vineyard, Biddenden

10 ACRE Orchard cider – Little Stour Orchard, Margate

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Best Kentish Wine, sponsored by Investaco

Winner: Ortega 2012 – Biddenden Vineyards, Biddenden

“We are delighted to be recognised once again for our hard work. All of the grapes are grown on the estate which is worked on by locals, picked by locals and bottled on the estate by a great team.”

Finalists:

Bacchus – Chapel Down, Tenterden

English Rose – Chapel Down, Tenterden

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Kent Artisan Food Producer of the Year, sponsored by Shopper Anonymous

Winner: Kent Fine Foods, Gillingham

“We have won the best product – lavender jelly and rose jelly before. We have been waiting to win the Kent Artisan award and it is absolutely fantastic. This is the award I’ve always wanted and I’m genuinely amazed we have won it against the competition tonight.”

Finalists:

Samovar, Nonington, Dover

Simply Ice Cream, Ashford

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Kent Butcher or Meat Producer of the Year, sponsored by sff

Winner: Court Farm Butchery & Country Larder, Halling, Rochester

“This is the first time we have won. We try our best so it is really good to know that we are appreciated by our customers and now the wider business community know that too.”

Finalists:

A.J.Barkaway, Faversham

Chandler & Dunn, Ash, Canterbury

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Kent Dining Pub of the Year, sponsored by Opies

Winner: The Ferry House Inn, Isle of Sheppey

“This is the first time we have entered and won which is fantastic. This is down to the fact we farm own own beef, shoot our own game, raise our own lamb and grow as much as we can in our kitchen garden. Being based on an Island we are also surrounded by fresh fish. We are a young team, and really proud to have achieved this win tonight.”

Finalists:

The George Inn, Molash

The Three Tuns, Lower Halstow

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Kent Farmers Market of the Year, sponsored by Hadlow College

Winner: Cliftonville Farmers Market

“We’re absolutely thrilled, we won in 2006, 07 and 08 and have been in the top three since – absolutely amazing.”

Finalists:

Rochester Farmers Market

Tonbridge Farmers Market

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Kent Fishmonger of the Year, sponsored by Chapman’s of Sevenoaks Ltd

Winner: Mobile Fresh Fish & Farm Shop

“I’m speechless, which for anyone who knows me is unusual.”

Finalists:

Fruits De Mer, Broadstairs

Folkestone Trawlers, Folkestone

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Kent Local Food Retailer of the Year, sponsored by NFU Mutual

Winner: Macknade Fine Foods, Faversham

“This is fantastic for our staff who work hard to source the range of products and provide the high level of service for our customers. This means a lot to us and always has and will. Produced in Kent does a lot for all areas in Kent and many thanks to them.”

Finalists:

Quex Barn, Birchington

Whitstable Produce Store, Whitstable

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Kent Restaurant of the Year, sponsored by Henkelman UK Ltd

Winner: Rocksalt, Folkestone

“After 20 years in London and running restaurants with Gordon Ramsey, the best thing that has happened to me was to come to Kent. We are serving the best produce Kent has to offer and it is great to be part of such a fantastic community.”

Finalists:

The Ambrette, Margate

Wyatt & Jones, Broadstairs

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Garden of England Champions Top Fruit, sponsored by BTF Partnership

 

• Winner – Top Apple: Gala variety Kate Langridge, Mallions Farm, Marden

“We’re all thrilled at Mallions farm that we can grow a variety of apple that can compete with fruit grown worldwide.”

 

• Winner – Garden of England Champions Top Pear: Concorde variety D & C Stevens, Elm Farm, Lower Halstow

“We’re honoured to be the first winners to have won this category.”

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Garden of England Champion Cherry and soft fruit

sponsored by East Malling Research (“EMR”)

 

• Cherries – Elverton Farms, Faversham for their Merchant variety

“We’re thrilled to have received this award tonight.”

 

• Strawberries – Langdon Manor Farm, Faversham for their Jubilee variety

“Thanks to all the team at the farm and for the help from the marketing group Berry Gardens and Driscolls who provided the breeding genetics to produce the Jubilee variety.”

 

• Raspberries – Newmafruit, Chartham, Canterbury for their Glen Ample variety

“We’re delighted to win the first award for the best raspberry variety, fantastic to win a Taste of Kent Award and great work done by Produced in Kent.”

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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

“This is great to win and shows that commercial farming and the conservation of the landscape can work hand in hand.”

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Kent Food Product Category Awards, sponsored by Shepherd Neame• Winner Dairy Class – Winterdale Shaw, Winterdale Cheesemakers

“We have won before but not this category. We are dedicated and passionate about what we do and how we do it. It is our wonderful cows that produce the milk from our family farm that makes our cheese so delicious.”

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• Winner Ambient Class – 10 ACRE Cider Vinegar, Little Stour Orchard“Second year of winning and just our third year in business. We are thrilled our naturally fermented cider vinegar has the recognition it deserves, everyone should have it daily as it is very healthy and delicious.” _Z1A1785
•  Winner Prepared Food Class – Kentish beef & vegetable pasty, S W Doughty“This is the first time we have entered this category but we have been the previous winners of meat producer and also shortlisted for meat producer. It is the provenance of the ingredients, which are locally sourced, our prime Sussex beef, potatoes and carrots that make it stand out. And also our team, this has been lovingly hand made by our apprentice – the next generation in the food industry in Kent.” _Z1A1787
•Winner Bakery & Confectionery Class – Honey Cake with Kentish Honey, Samovar“This is the first time entered. I want to dedicate this award to my grandmother who very sadly passed away a few weeks ago. She taught me to cook and I love cooking and all my customers who voted for me. I hope I can get my honey cake to shops all over England.” _Z1A1778
• Winner Catering Class – Dangus beef fillet, Gribble Bridge Meats“Amazing, this is the first time to have entered and to have won is incredible.” _Z1A1781
• Catering Highly Commended – Strong Wholemeal Flour, Pure Kent“This is the first time we have entered and we are very excited to have also won on our first time. All credit to the bakers who make our flour into amazing products.”

Dairy Highly Commended – Chaucers Camembert, Cheesemakers of Canterbury

“We have won before but not this category. We are dedicated and passionate about what we do and how we do it. It is our wonderful cows that produce the milk from our family farm that makes our cheese so delicious.”

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_Z1A1814Best Kent Food Product, sponsored by KFF

Winner: 10 ACRE apple cider vinegar, Little Stour Orchard

“This is our third award tonight and we thrilled and speechless, all the hard work is worth it.”

 

 

_Z1A1889Produced 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 www.tasteofkentawards.co.uk, and on the Produced in Kent Facebook Page

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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