Big thanks to everyone who joined us in celebrating the winners of the 2015 Great Cornish Food Awards on Monday 21st September – an annual commemoration of those businesses doing their bit to put Cornwall on the international map for quality food and drink.
We did battle with the weather that day, but the sun shone for 99% of the ceremony before everyone rushed inside for amazing afternoon tea and sushi. That’s a Cornish autumn for you…
Timed to coincide with the week of the Great Cornish Food Festival (25-27th September), the team at CFD organise the Awards each year to recognise the businesses going the extra mile when it comes to local sourcing, staff development, marketing, innovation and truly outstanding customer service. A judging panel of esteemed local and national food and business experts got to work over the summer to choose winners from a high-calibre shortlist which saw artisan start-ups rub shoulders with household names and Cornish staples.
Shortlisted businesses across the region – from the Isles of Scilly to Launceston – attended the daytime ceremony, held at the National Trust’s Trelissick House near Feock with stunning catering by New Zealand chef Fiona Were. Guests of Honour Jill Stein and Jack Stein joined us to share an inspirational Q&A with BBC Radio Cornwall’s Daphne Skinnard on 40 years of running a business in Cornwall, and what the future might look like for Cornwall’s food and drink industry.
Rail provider GWR were the awards’ key sponsors, joining a panel of businesses across the county who generously stepped up to help make the awards a reality. GWR were also on hand to present a special new award for the Great Cornish Food Ambassador, selected for going way beyond the requirements of their day job to help drive the local food economy.
The Awards coincide with our recent survey findings, which found that over 80% of people say that the food and drink has an influence on their decision to come to Cornwall on holiday. Meanwhile, 4 out of 5 people rate the food scene’s choice and diversity as good or exceptionally good, proving once again that Cornwall has much more to shout about than the much-loved products it’s famous for.
The Award-winners were as follows:
The Great Cornish Food Retailer Award, sponsored by Cornish Mutual
Winner: The Cornish Food Box Company in Truro
Judge’s comments: ‘Cornwall should be extremely proud of this business. I have no doubts they will go from strength to strength, and in doing so will do wonderful things for Cornish food and drink producers as well as providing fantastic job opportunities for Cornish people.’
The Great Cornish Food Producer Award, sponsored by the Royal Cornwall Agricultural Association
Winner: Deli Farm Charcuterie at Delabole
Judge’s comments: ‘A great Cornish success story, developing a new market locally, fulfilling demand not already met by local producers, providing local employment, training and adding value to local produce.’
Great Cornish Food On the Go Award, sponsored by Abbotts Event Hire
Winner: The Cornish Pizza Company in St Agnes
Judge’s comments: ‘Really great products using local suppliers and really promoting those suppliers. The quality of the pizzas was exceptional. I was impressed with how well organised the team was and how efficiently they worked together. They did the up sell – yes I had the garlic bread too!’
The Great Cornish Supply Chain Award, sponsored by Cornwall Food & Drink
Winner: Westcountry Fruit Sales based near Falmouth.
Judge’s comments: ‘A professional and forward-thinking business, ambitious to keep growing and moving in response to technological and market developments. The comprehensive nature of their offer enables them to outmarket national wholesalers locally. Cornwall needs businesses like this, with their service levels, investment capacity and buying power.’
Great Cornish Pub/ Bar Award, sponsored by St Austell Brewery
Winner: Falmouth Packet Inn at Rosudgeon
Judge’s comments: ‘The food is beyond delicious, the interior clean and cosy and the staff polite and attentive. I really hope more people discover this gem of a gastropub that Cornwall should be rightly proud to call one of its own.’
The Great Cornish Café Award, sponsored by Trewithen Dairy
Winner: Juliet’s Garden on St Mary’s, the Isles of Scilly
Judge’s comments: ‘We dined during a very busy sunny lunchtime, and it worked like a well-oiled machine, with very good service from all members of the team. The attention to detail in all other areas was exceptional. The full ‘customer experience’ was very well thought through and maximized the truly breath-taking setting.’
The Great Cornish Restaurant Award, sponsored by Cornwall Chamber of Commerce
Winner: No.4 Peterville, in St Agnes
Judge’s comments: ‘This is as good bistro food as you'd find anywhere in France or Italy. No. 4 is yet another fine establishment that make one proud to proclaim Cornwall's food and drink sector from the rooftops.’
The Great Cornish Food Experience, sponsored by Wolf Rock Marketing
Winner: Philleigh Way Cookery School on the Roseland,
Judge’s comments: ‘While the business itself is very young, it has already contributed hugely to the Cornish food and drink scene, offering employment opportunities and a consistent demand for Cornish suppliers. For the consumer, it offers a full Cornish experience, utilising the skills and knowledge of Cornish people and using entirely Cornish produce in a suitably rural location.’
The Great Cornish Food Breakthrough Award, sponsored by Stephens Scown
Winner: Southwestern Distilllery of St Ervan near Wadebridge.
Judge’s comments: ‘Impressive impact on the Cornish drinks industry; Cornwall should be very proud of this business. It is this that makes it the standout newcomer. Unexpected and classy.’
The Great Cornish Food Ambassador of 2015, sponsored by GWR, was presented to Philip Ugalde – founder of pasty company Proper Cornish, and the driving force behind the Bodmin Food Cluster, aimed at rallying food producing businesses to generate a better community and environment in the Bodmin area.
Congratulations again to all of the award-winners!
The Great Cornish Food Awards precede this week’s Great Cornish Food Festival, starting this Friday on Lemon Quay in Truro. For more information on the Awards or the Festival, visit greatcornishfood.co.uk.