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Food and DrinkTop contenders unveiled for the ultimate accolades in food and drink

Top contenders unveiled for the ultimate accolades in food and drink

From 14,195 to one, who will be crowned this year’s Great Taste Supreme Champion?

The results are out for Great Taste 2023 – the world’s most coveted food and drink awards – with 2,344 artisanal food and drink companies across the nation taking home 1-, 2- and 3-stars alongside that all-important judges’ feedback.

Organised by the Guild of Fine Food, this year’s Great Taste awards judging was held over 89 days, in Dorset and London, with general and specialist days for espresso, tea, beer & cider, chilli, matcha, filter coffee, herbal infusions, and new for this year, plant-based alternatives and lo-no alcohol. This year’s expert judging panel blind-tasted 14,195 food and drink products entered from a staggering 109 different countries from across the world.

4,088 (28.8%) were awarded a Great Taste 1-star – ‘food & drink that delivers fantastic flavour’, 1,568 (11%) were awarded a Great Taste 2-star – ‘above and beyond delicious’, and 248 (1.8%) were awarded a Great Taste 3-star – ‘extraordinarily tasty food & drink’. Recent YouGov research* shows that 55% of all UK adults are familiar with Great Taste logos on food and drink packaging, with 74% of those who recognise the logo saying it was a sign of quality and 56% saying it would persuade them to buy a product.  Past winners have claimed that displaying a Great Taste sticker has increased sales by as much as 50%, as consumers from around the globe race to taste the best food and drink products each year.

All 3-star winning products have now be judged again by an expert panel and the highest scoring are in the running for the highest accolade of all: the Great Taste Supreme Champion of 2023. These top products, alongside the highest scoring from key countries, will take home a Golden Fork award. Further Golden Fork trophies are given for various categories including Great Taste Startisan of the Year and Nigel Barden’s Heritage Award.

Of the 3-star winners, 139 have come from the UK and 109 from international producers, including oak honey from Greece and Spain, cold brew tea from Germany, Lebanese chilli sea salt, Cambodian flower sugar and cheeses from Hungary, France, Norway, Bulgaria, and Spain, among many other interesting and innovative products.

John Farrand, managing director at the Guild of Fine Food comments: “It’s encouraging to see the trends we witnessed during the 4-month judging season resurfacing within the list of Golden Fork nominees for 2023. We’re encountering impeccably crafted and inventive artisanal products, alongside outstanding renditions of cherished classics across all categories – mirroring the demand for high quality food and drink by food enthusiasts and independent retailers globally.”

Nominees in the running for a Golden Fork this year are (listed A-Z by company name):

·         Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil from 245 Olive Oil

·         Sour Cherry Molasses from Belazu Ingredient Company

·         Pedigree, organic, pasture-fed hogget leg from Black Welsh Lamb

·         Dorset Coppa from Capreolus Fine Foods

·         Jamon de Tudanca from Carniceria Quintana

·         Cacio di Afrodite from Caseificio Il Fiorino

·         Andes Mountain Honey from CD Colmenares

·         Sea Salt Caramel Filled Bar from Chocolatia

·         Anchoas del Cantábrico en Mantequilla Ecológica from Conservas M.A Revilla

·         Colombia El Placer “Yellow Fruits” from Dark Woods Coffee

·         DYB Naturally Brewed Brown Soybean Soy Sauce from DoYouBo Industry Co.

·         Simply Better French Epoisses PDO from Dunnes Stores

·         Fino Dark Balsamic (Crema) from Fino

·         Sardines in Olive Oil from Giribizzi CP One Global

·         Buttermilk Pork Chop from Hannan Meats

·         Wye Valley Meadery Traditional Mead from Hive Mind Mead & Brew Co.

·         Irish Yogurts Clonakilty Half Fat Crème Fraîche from Irish Yogurts Clonakilty

·         Smaller Green Leafhopper Honey Flavour Black Tea (Flower) from Junjie Lin Tea Garden

·         La Maritxu Basque Cheesecake from La Maritxu

·         ΛΗΜΝΙΑ ΓΗ (honey) from Lemnos Apicultural Cooperative

·         Loch Fyne Kinglas Fillet from Loch Fyne Oysters

·         Wagyu Beef & Ale Pie from Martins

·         Pistachio Ice Cream from Mauds Ice Creams

·         Morelli’s Pistachio Swirl Ice Cream from Morelli Ice Cream

·         Cold Pressed Sunflower Dressing Oil from Mountain Produce

·         Signature Tastes Smoked Rack of Bacon from Musgrave Retail Partners Ireland

·         Bagoila Cold Pressed Pumpkin Seed Oil from Natur Press Team

·         Roussas Galotyri P.D.O. from Roussas Dairy

·         Saicho Hojicha Sparkling Tea from Saicho Drinks

·         Mrs Bell’s Blue from Shepherds Purse Cheeses

·         Silver Hill Confit Duck Legs from Silver Hill Duck

·         Tenuta Marmorelle Panettone Infused with Vin Santo Liqueur from Tenuta Marmorelle

·         Ice Cyder from The Newt in Somerset

·         English Heritage Toffee Apple Curd from Thursday Cottage

·         Jalapeno Ketchup Dead Hot Sauce from Trodden Black

·         Sommerblüte Fass Nr. 1 from Wegguner Honighof

All will be revealed on Monday 11 September at the Great Taste Golden Forks awards ceremony held at Battersea Arts Centre, London (industry event only), where the  following Golden Forks will be awarded:

·         Golden Fork from England

·         Golden Fork from Scotland

·         Golden Fork from Wales

·         Golden Fork from Northern Ireland

·         Golden Fork from Ireland

·         Golden Fork from Spain

·         Golden Fork from Greece

·         Golden Fork from Italy

·         Golden Fork from the Rest of Europe

·         Golden Fork from the Rest of World

·         Great Taste Startisan of the Year

·         Nigel Barden Heritage Award

·         Supreme Champion

In addition, the Guild of Fine Food will award an individual or group with the annual Guild of Fine Food Contribution to Food & Drink.

Food & Drink Wales is the headline sponsor of Great Taste 2023.  Great Taste Golden Fork trophy sponsors include: Andrew Ingredients, Bord Bia, Food & Drink Wales, Invest NI, Italian Trade Agency, Maltby & Greek, Mevalco, Partridges, Scotland Food and Drink, ShireFoods, and Speciality and Fine Food Fair.  Great Taste is supported by Henderson Group, Horgans, and Peter Green Chilled.

What is Great Taste?

Recognised as a stamp of excellence and actively sought out by food lovers and retailers alike, Great Taste, organised by the Guild of Fine Food, values taste above all else. All products in the line-up for judging are blind-tasted: every product is removed from its packaging so it cannot be identified, before entering a robust, layered judging process.

New for this year and to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Great Taste, the Guild of Fine Food offered 50 micro producers the chance to put one new product in front of its expert panel of Great Taste judges for free. The bursary was aimed at micro producers who have never entered Great Taste before or have a new product which has never been entered before. 2023 saw 21 products entered through the bursary scheme win a Great Taste award including Karobi’s Ghee from Karobi’s (3-star), New Alt from Antur Brew Co. (3-star), Shoogle Junniperous Scottish Navy Strength Gin from Shoogle Spirits (2-star) and Traditional Napa Cabbage Kimchi from The Ferm (1-star).  

Great Taste’s prestigious judging panel is made up of over 500 food & drink professionals, including critics, chefs, recipe creators, buyers, retailers, journalists, broadcasters, and experts in the field. This experienced panel, each with trusted palates, have together tasted and re-judged the 3-star winning products to determine the highest scoring products who will be awarded at this year’s Golden Forks, as well as the Great Taste Supreme Champion of 2023.

Sam Allcock
Sam Allcock
With over 20 years of experience in the field SEO and digital marketing, Sam Allcock is a highly regarded entrepreneur. He is based in Cheshire but has an interest in all things going on in the North West and enjoys contributing local news to the site.
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