Congratulations to all winners and finalists at the Hampshire Life Food and Drink Awards!
After much anticipation, the Hampshire Life Food and Drink Awards were held last night at the Four Seasons Hotel in Dogmersfield. The finalists nervously gathered to hear the results of the twelve categories including 'Hampshire's Best Menu' which was sponsored by Hampshire Fare.
The finalists present at the awards had been chosen by a panel of judges from more than 2,500 nominations made by the public. The independent panel of judges then spent more than a month researching the nominees before coming to their final decision over who should win the awards.
In the stunning setting of the Four Seasons Hotel, guests enjoyed a delicious locally-sourced meal before the compere for the evening, Georgina Windsor from BBC Radio Solent, took to the stage. Georgina spoke of her passion for the county's food and drink as she begun the awards ceremony.
Awards were presented to nine Hampshire Fare members including Luke Holder in the Chef of the Year category, Newlyns Farm Shop in the Butcher of the Year and Lyburn Cheese in the Best Food and Drink Producer category.
Lisa from Lisa's Larder spoke of her delight at being chosen as the overall winner of the Newcomer of the Year category: 'It's a great surprise to win this award in our first year of trading. It's fantastic to know that our customers like what we're doing!'
Jen Williams from Naked Jam who won the New Forest Marque category commented on her award: ' It's an honour, it's fantastic and it's a surprise. The New Forest Marque category is more of a team and I'm proud to be nominated alongside such worthy candidates.
Hampshire Fare sponsored the coveted category of 'Best Hampshire Menu' judged by local freelance food writer, Susie Carter. With three outstanding restaurants in the final three deciding the overall winner must have been a challenging task. The award was presented to The Pig after it was decided that their passion for local ingredients and the obvious labour of love that went into their menu made them stand out.
Mike Wright, Chairman of Hampshire Fare, spoke of the high standard of the finalists: 'We are fortunate in Hampshire to have a large number of pubs and restaurants with chefs who are dedicated to using the high quality local ingredients available to them. The three finalists in the 'Best Hampshire Menu' category are excellent examples of establishments serving inspiring local dishes which really showcase our county's food.'
The full list of winners:
Newcomer of the Year - Lisa's Larder
Butcher of the Year - Newlyns Farm Shop
Tea/Coffee Shop of the Year - Rosie Lea Tea House
Best Farm Shop - Beechcroft Farm Shop
Best Local Supplier/Producer - Lyburn Cheese
New Forest Marque - Naked Jam
Food/Drink Product of the Year - Cheeky Chutney from The Hampshire Chutney Co.
Best Hampshire Menu - The Pig
Pub of the Year - The Hoddington Arms
Restaurant of the Year - Hartnett Holder & Co. at Limewood Hotel
Chef of the Year - Luke Holder
2013 Hampshire Food and Drink Hero - Sarah Hunt from New Forest Produce
A huge congratulations to all of the winners and finalists!
Image: James Golding, Head Chef at The Pig and Mike Wright, Hampshire Fare Chairman