Food & Drink Awards 2017 – by Lauren Heath

Recently I was lucky enough to be invited to attend the Love the Flavour – Food and Drink Devon Awards.

The event was held at the handsome Deer Park Country House Hotel, and was attended by some of the finest local Devon food and drink producers, restaurateurs and foodie folk around.

A venue with is own vegetable garden and orchard, the menu was bound to be delicious.

We enjoyed a starter of salmon rilette, pickled cucumber, horseradish and salmon caviar. This was a delectable, smoked salmon affair, with plenty of refreshing, palate-cleansing bedfellows.

Main of peppered pork tenderloin, crackling, creamed potato, apple, savoy cabbage and pork sauce. This delectable meaty morsel was so soft and moreish, cooked to perfection with complimentary savoury elements, along with the subtle sweetness of apple. And crackling….what a piece of crackling!

Dessert was a vanilla cheesecake, apple and cider sauce. It looked simple but was texturally spot on – smooth and light, creamy yet elegant, draped in a sweet sauce for a bit of naughtiness with a delightful cleansing sorbet.

The food was a fantastic representation of local suppliers, cooked wonderfully by the Deer Park team; considering the orangery was full of approx 200 people, it certainly upholds the basis for their reputation of catering for small and large events.

So as we ate, drank and chatted with our table guests, of course the reason we were all there was to witness the announcement and award giving of the lucky foodie establishment and product winners, all the while admiring everyone that had been shortlisted, as that is an achievement in itself.

The awards were very well organised by RAW PR and Marketing, we heard from passionate chair of Food and Drink Devon, Barbara King and the comedic Nigel Barden of BBC2 Food and Drink fame was our compère and host for the evening.

Before reading the winners below, if there’s anything we want you to take from this blog post, it has to be inspiration or a to-do list. Everyone below, and on the runners up list on the website, are incredibly hard working Devon folk at the top of their game, doing what they do best, trying to mke a living whilst utilising the best of Devons larder – google them, share them, follow them on social media, take friends to eat lunch there, buy their products for a gift, or go on and just spoil yourself – but support local! They can only exist if we support them all year round whatever the occasion.

Of course if you are a local food or drink producer or restaurant, looking for support and promotion within Devon and beyond do get in touch with Food and Drink Devon to see how they can help you. The team are incredibly passionate and know a thing or two, as they have fingers in plenty of pies (excuse the pun!).

Anyway – here are the winners in each category:

Best Fine Dining Restaurant Thurlestone Hotel, Kingsbridge
Best Hotel Restaurant Kentisbury Grange, Barnstaple
Best Restaurant Fat Belly Freds, Barnstaple
Best Pub Restaurant Victoria Inn, Salcombe
Best Pub The Journey’s End Inn, Kingsbridge
Best Bistro The Hotel Bar @ Arundell Arms
Best Café The Pantry, Kingsbridge
Best Street Food The Teign Canteen, Teignmouth
New Awards
Best Cookery/Training School Salcombe Distilling Co
Best Farmers Market Crediton Farmers Market
Retail Awards
Best Retailer Aune Valley Meat, Loddiswell
Best Online Retailer Riverford Organic Farmers
Producer Awards
Best Producer Salcombe Distilling Co
Best Packaging Bell & Loxton

Taste of Devon Gold Awards for Food and Drink Products

Bays Brewery Topsail
Bell & Loxton Basil Oil
Chocolate Heaven made in Devon Salted Caramel Liqueur Truffle
Chunk of Devon Cheddar & Onion Pasty
Chicken, Leek & Bacon Pasty
Squealer Pork Pie
The Steak Pasty
Churston Traditional Farm Shop Beef & Stilton Pasty
Continental Crumbs Morning Crunch Biscuits
Dartmoor Chilli Farm Dartmoor Goblin
Dartmoor Distillery Black Dog Gin
Devon Distillery Devon Grappa
Eversfield Organic Beef Fillet Steak
Honey Smoked Streaky Bacon
Favis of Salcombe 100% Hand Picked Brown Crab
100% Hand Picked Dressed Crab
100% Hand Picked White Crab
Hanlons Brewery Stormstay
Happy Butter Organic Butter Ghee
Hunters Brewery Devon Maid
Hunt’s Cider Wobbler Cider
Lyme Bay Winery Bacchus Block
Blanc de Noirs
Otter Garden Centres Raspberry Jam
Strawberry Jam
Rocks Drinks Sparkling Elderflower
Ruth’s Real Food Caponata – Sicilian Vegetable Stew (vegan)
Homemade Christmas Pudding
Sticky Toffee Pudding
Salcombe Dairy Honeycomb Ice Cream
Salcombe Distilling Co Start Point Gin
Sharpham Wine & Cheese Washbourne
South Hams Brewery Black & White
South Devon Chilli Farm Cool Jalapeno Salsa
The Well Hung Meat Co Lamb Chops
Tideford Organic Foods Fresh Brown Rice Miso
Tom’s Pies Chicken & Leek Pie
Waterhouse Fayre Seville Marmalade
Yarde Cider Real Cider

The full list including silver award winners as well as deserving runners up can be found here.

Thanks to Food and Drink Devon for having me as their guest, and here’s to another year of great food and produce! Let’s all help to fly the foodie flag for Devon, countywide and countrywide.



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