The cream of the city’s hospitality industry joined together on Sunday evening for the grand final of the annual Brighton & Hove Food and Drink Festival Awards.
Launched in March 2013, with the support of the Montefiore Hospital, over 1,800 members of the public nominated across 12 categories – with over 11,000 nominations in all. 22 professional judges then secret-shopped the top three in each category over the summer months. Hosted by Andrew Kay and Andrea Fox, with entertainment from Laura Nixon, the award winners were announced to a packed Live Food Show marquee of industry professionals and VIPs, who also enjoyed Blackdown Sussex gin cocktails, canapés from Cantina, wines and beers from Pub du Vin and a Sussex hog roast by L’Eglise.
“The festival team and our media partners have worked hard to ensure that the awards are a true representation of the best restaurants, bars, cafés, retailers and pubs in the city.”, said festival director Nick Mosley. “We have an amazing hospitality and food industry in and around the city, and we believe that the businesses celebrated last night really are at the top of their game”.
“Its pleasing to see so many young, independent businesses featuring in the awards, with the likes of La Choza, The Troll’s Pantry and the Craft Beer Co. rating highly in both the public nominations and our secret shopping.”, continues Mosley. “It really does go to show how vibrant our local food economy is, and that’s just what the festival and the awards are here to showcase, support and celebrate”.
In addition to the 12 awards, the festival directors also announced an additional Special Recognition award which was presented to Carla ter Maat of Drakes of Brighton.
“Carla and Drakes have been huge supporters of the food festival for many years – getting involved in so many of our activities at every level including our International Chef Exchange projects with her head chef Andy MacKenzie”, said Mosley. “The festival directors wanted to say thank you and offer recognition for her efforts for promoting Drakes, the festival and our city”.
The Brighton & Hove Food and Drink Festival returns with the Spring Harvest at the end of April 2014. The festival organisation also runs regular farmers markets, and a host of events and activities across the year between the main festival periods.
Category judged by Gary Peters (Brighton & Hove Jobs) & James Dempster (Cobb Healthcare)
GOLD The Lion & Lobster
SILVER Craft Beer Co.
BRONZE The Basketmakers
Category judged by Hanna Neter & Dan Gasser (Juice FM)
GOLD Treacle & Co
SILVER The Laine Deli
BRONZE Moksha Caffè
Best Chain Retailer
Category judged by Soozie Campbell (Tourism Alliance) & Dave Moon-Watson (PHS Wastetech)
Best Family Dining Venue
Category judged by Shoshana Plail (childfriendlybrighton.co.uk)
GOLD Breeze Brasserie
SILVER The Hove Kitchen
BRONZE The Coal Shed
Best Fish & Chips
Category judged by Mike Weatherley MP & James Dempster (Cobb Healthcare)
GOLD The Regency
Category judged by Ryan Heal (Rockinghorse) & Nathalie Gomez de Vera (Brighton Visitor)
GOLD Ben & Pamela McKellar (Gingerman Restaurants)
SILVER Seb Cole (Boho Gelato)
BRONZE Paul Clark (The Troll’s Pantry)
Best Food Pub
Category judged by Adam Style (Style Accountants) & Mark Ansell (Brighton & Hove Independent)
GOLD The Foragers
SILVER The Ginger Pig
BRONZE The Lion & Lobster
Best Independent Retailer
Category judged by Caroline Williams (PHS Wastetech) & Sue Korman (Unique to Brighton)
GOLD Infinity Foods
SILVER Butlers Wine Cellar
BRONZE Boho Gelato
Category judged by John Keenan (The Argus)
GOLD La Choza
BRONZE Betty La La’s
Category judged by Andrew Kay (Latest) & Nick Mosley (Brighton Visitor)
GOLD Terre á Terre
SILVER The Chilli Pickle
BRONZE The Coal Shed
Category judged by Ian MIller (Brighton & Hove Bus Company) & Angi Mariani (Latest)
GOLD The Chilli Pickle Canteen
BRONZE The Troll’s Pantry
Best Sustainable Food Business
Category judged by Caroline Lucas MP & Jess Crocker (Brighton & Hove Food Partnership)
SILVER Terre á Terrre
BRONZE Infinity Foods Café
Special Recognition Award
Category judged by the Brighton & Hove Food and Drink Festival directors
GOLD Carla ter Maat, Drakes of Brighton