Returning for their 18th year, the Deliciouslyorkshire Taste Awards certainly came of age in style, with a glittering black-tie awards ceremony celebrating the very best of Yorkshire food and drink.
In their annual celebration of the county’s thriving food and drink industry, the Taste Awards, which are run by Deliciouslyorkshire, the Regional Food Group for Yorkshire and the Humber, enjoyed record entries across their 25 hotly contested categories, many from a number of new and innovative businesses.
Jointly headline sponsored by the University of York School for Business and Society and FixOurFood, the Awards, which are the biggest and most respected in the North of England, attract hundreds of entries from businesses of all shapes and sizes from throughout the region. Led by Head Judges, artisan food champion Nigel Barden and Yorkshire’s favourite chef Steph Moon, the entries were judged across an intense week of blind tastings in September.
This year’s seasoned judging panel included industry experts, chefs, supermarket buyers, writers, consultants and food entrepreneurs, who carefully worked their way through each of the entries, before whittling them down to this year’s coveted list of finalists which was announced in October.
This year’s much anticipated Taste Award winners, which included awards for Best Pork Pie, Bakery, New Business and Best Use of Local Produce on a Menu, were finally revealed earlier this week in a glittering ceremony at the Pavilions of Harrogate, which saw guests enjoy a delicious menu, featuring many of the shortlisted and winning products.
Host Nigel said: “It’s always a pleasure to be involved in these awards which go from strength to strength each year and always attract new, innovative and collaborative products and businesses from throughout the region.
“Now in this milestone year, we continued this trend and 2022 has seen a whole host of exciting and inspiring entries from all corners of the county.
“It’s a real testament to the resilience and passion of the industry here in Yorkshire that our food and drink producers are still innovating, collaborating and thriving to produce products to such a high standard, and that’s what makes the Taste Awards so exciting year on year.”
As well as the product and business categories, the winner of the 2022 Judy Bell Yorkshire Food Hero was revealed along with the overall Taste Award Supreme Product Champion, which is the judging panel’s stand out entry of the year.
And the 2022 winners are…
WINNER: Acorn Dairy
Family run Acorn Dairy has seen substantial growth in its wholesale businesses over the last 3 years. The undoubted quality of their products has driven demand not just locally but also nationally, as their range expands.
The judging panel were impressed with the proactive relationships developed across their customer base and the clear evidence of collaboration with other local businesses.
“With a key focus on improving sustainability within the business as well as maintaining the highest standards of welfare, Acorn Dairy have proven themselves to be agile, flexible and forward thinking,” said the judges.
Best New Business
Sponsored by TRUEfoods
WINNER: Homestead Kitchen
Nestled in the picturesque moorland village of Goathland in North Yorkshire, Homestead Kitchen is a converted 18th century farmhouse featuring a restaurant offering relaxed fine dining and a self-contained holiday cottage.
The judges loved the team’s genuine passion for Yorkshire that’s deeply personal to their team and rooted throughout their business.
“With a clarity of mission and a passion for caring about their land, home and business in the most sustainable way possible, in just 12 short months this business has received rave reviews and established a loyal following. We can’t wait to visit!”
Best Use of Local Produce on a Menu
Sponsored by Grow Yorkshire
WINNER: Homestead Kitchen
Clearly onto a winning streak at this year’s Taste Awards, the judging panel awarded this year’s Best Use of Local Produce on a Menu to the Homestead Kitchen for their clear connection to the local landscape, their ethos and communication of provenance as well as their dedication to local sourcing which they described as “outstanding”.
“From harvesting their own vegetables, to selecting quality local ingredients which are then treated with the utmost care, this respect and simplicity is a winning combination – Yorkshire pride and passion on a plate – bravo!”
Best Independent Retailer
Sponsored by CHILLI
WINNER: Yolk Farm
Thanks to Yorkshire’s abundance of fantastic independent retailers, this category is always one to watch.
The judges loved this year’s winner, Yolk Farm, based at Minskip close to Boroughbridge commenting: “Small but perfectly formed, this is a fantastic shopping experience with a warm Yorkshire welcome alongside knowledgeable and very helpful staff.”
“Yolk Farm showcased an excellent range of quality, local produce with provenance clearly marked and celebrated with a range of both home-grown and homemade products also available. A clear vision, with clear branding and a cohesive and compelling proposition. Very well done.”
Best Free From
WINNER: Geo. Middlemiss & Son – Gluten Free Yorkshire Steak & Potato Pie
In a category that covers a variety of areas from gluten free to vegan and everything in between, the Best Free From award is often a difficult one to judge with a wide variety of entries.
This year’s winning product came from the team at Otley based butchers Geo. Middlemiss & Son who are no stranger to producing Taste Award winning products. Their Gluten Free Yorkshire Steak & Potato Pie caused a real stir amongst the panel who said: “If you didn’t know this product was gluten free you certainly wouldn’t be able to tell. Crisp pastry, and generously filled it’s packed with delicious flavour and is a product to be proud of!”
Best Bakery Product
Sponsored by Cranswick
WINNER: Burtree Puddings – Golden Syrup Pudding with Sticky Syrup Sauce
Unsurprisingly one of our most popular awards to judge, the Best Bakery category again enjoyed a record-breaking number of entries this year, which certainly didn’t disappoint the judges!
The winning product, Golden Syrup Pudding with Sticky Syrup Sauce from family run business Burtree Puddings “screamed quality” according to the panel. Run by husband-and-wife team Robert and Lea Darling, this year’s winner was described as “Simple, honest and a real classic. It’s a fantastic example of a simple product produced to perfection. Full of comforting and delicious flavours – we literally can’t fault it! Run, don’t walk, to buy it now!”
Best Pork Pie
WINNER: J A Mounfield & Son – 1lb Pork Pie
Selby based butchers J A Mounfield & Son returned for another successful year in the coveted Best Pork Pie category.
Winning this award this award for a fourth consecutive year, the judges said, “this is a pie to be proud of! Beautiful to look at, rustic and appealing, it’s perfectly seasoned with delicious flavoursome jelly throughout and the meat and pastry combination was just perfection!”
Best Fresh Meat
Sponsored by Yorkshire Agricultural Society
WINNER: Soanes Poultry – Grain Fed Chicken
Rarely does an entry cause such an intake of breath from the judging panel but this year’s Fresh Meat winner, did just that! Reared on farm in the Yorkshire Wolds to the highest welfare standards, this product wasn’t just visually sensational, it packed a punch on flavour too.
The judging panel commented: “It looks great, it smells amazing, and the taste was out of this world. This product screams care and quality and was packed with moist, buttery, and delicious flavour throughout. A joy to eat and a seriously great piece of meat.”
Best Ice Cream/Dairy
Sponsored by Reed Boardall
WINNER: Burtree Puddings – Lemon Posset
Famous for their range of products made using traditional methods, Burtree Puddings continued their 2022 winning streak by sailing to victory in this year’s Ice Cream & Dairy category with their Lemon Posset.
“Enticing and delicious, this is a really grown-up product, full of zestiness, and it packs a punch of flavour, “said the judges. “With a deliciously creamy texture, which makes it feel really decedent – this is a classy dessert and one we could see ourselves buying for special occasions again and again. A real treat!”
Best Savoury Condiment
WINNER: Town End Farm Shop – Chorizo Jam
This year’s winning product really gave the judges something to talk about!
Produced by the team at award-winning Town End Farm Shop, based at Airton in the Yorkshire Dales, their Chorizo Jam was a different take on our usual savory condiment entries and really stood out.
Praised for its flavour combinations, balance of acidity and all over innovation and quality, our judges said: “It’s thick and chunky with a great balance of flavours and a deliciously meaty texture, we could happily polish off an entire jar without any problem!”
WINNER: Florian Poirot – Red Fruit Tea and Chocolate Macaron
“Textbook with a twist”, was how the winner of this year’s Best Confectionery category was described by our panel.
Curtesy of the team at Malton based Florian Poirot, their Red Fruit Tea and Chocolate Macaron was universally loved by the panel. “Beautiful to look at and with a crisp outer shell, the filling is jammy and delicious with the fruit flavours singing through. A real treat for the eyes as well as the taste buds and a seriously good product that highlights the skills and passion that has gone into creating them.”
WINNER: Side Oven Bakery – Winter Indulgence – Organic Granola with Chocolate, Orange & Almond
This year’s Best Pantry category champion, was a clear winner in the eyes of our judges, produced by the skilled team of bakers at the family run Side Oven Bakery based at Foston-on-the-Wolds in East Yorkshire.
“This product has clearly been made with love and care. Vibrant, fresh and interesting to look at, it has a lovely balance of sweetness and an exciting mix of flavours and textures throughout. It really delivers and is a breakfast that you would be reaching for throughout the day again and again – we love it!”
Unfortunately the Side Oven Bakery team weren’t able to join us for the awards ceremony, and so the award was collected on their behalf by Michele Scott of Yorkshire Media.
Best Prepared Meat (Cold)
Sponsored by Parkers Branded
WINNER: Lishman’s of Ilkley – York Air Dried Ham
Ilkley based Lishman’s winning Best Prepared Cold Meat entry was described as “simply beautiful!”
In a category that turned up so many great products it had to be split into two separate awards, their York Air Dried Ham was much loved by our panel who described it as “Meadow-esque with a incredible depth of flavour and a delicious balance of fat.”
The judges loved it’s “thin, almost translucent appearance which has clearly been produced with considerable skill and care. It has floral notes and a deliciously moreish pork flavour and is everything we would want and more! A truly impressive product!”
Best Prepared Meat (Hot)
Sponsored by Parkers Branded
WINNER: Hinchliffe’s Farm Shop – Dry Cured Plain Back Bacon
After receiving so many note-worthy entries into our Best Prepared Meat category, our panel were split down the middle on this year’s winning product – so simply decided to award two!
This year’s Best Prepared Meat (Hot) came in the form of Dry Cured Plain Back Bacon from much loved Farm Shop Hinchliffe’s near Huddersfield. The judges describing it as “looking good, smelling delicious and really packing a punch on flavour! With a skillful balance of salt and beautiful golden fat that was full of meaty flavour, this was clearly produced by a skilled hand with a huge amount of passion for the product that they produce. A seriously good entry!”
Best Ready to Eat
Sponsored by Subrosa
WINNER: Rosalind’s Larder – Borek
“Beautifully presented and clearly created with a huge amount of skill, we couldn’t wait to dig in and we certainly weren’t disappointed.”
The Judges were clearly bowled over by this year’s winning Best Ready to Eat entry from Rosalind’s Larder – more widely known for their range of award-winning preserves!
“Well filled, beautifully spiced and packed with delicious layers of well-balanced flavour – this is a really well made, quality product,” said our panel and one which didn’t last on the judging table for long!
WINNER: Shepherds Purse Cheeses – Yorkshire Blue
With so many fantastic and iconic producers in Yorkshire, the Best Cheese award is always one to watch.
Our winning cheese from Shepherds Purse Cheeses really hit the spot with our panel who loved the flavour journey, it took them on. “Well balanced and with a delicate salty finish. We really enjoyed this product with its beautiful texture and its interesting rind which beckoned us on. It had a delicious smell which really carried on through to the flavour. A real treat of a cheese and one which we’ll be running out to buy!”
Best Fish and Seafood
Sponsored by Platinum Print
WINNER: AliBiltonCooks – Asian Style Potted Crab and Brown Shrimp
This year’s Fish and Seafood Category was probably the best to date! With so many entries of such high quality across the board and many innovative and delicious products, the judges had a whale of a time getting stuck into this year’s entries.
The panel loved the winning product from AliBiltonCooks declaring it “delicious and fresh, with a lively balance of flavours. A very moreish product that looked appealing and delivers on taste and texture – a real triumph!”
Sponsored by Shepherds Purse Cheeses
WINNER: Pennine Brewing Co – Heartland
Bedale based Pennine Brewery returned for a second triumphant year to take home the award for Best Beer. In an ever-popular category covering both Yorkshire’s fantastic beers and ciders, this year’s winner was described by our judges as “extremely gluggable!”
The family run and fiercely independent brewery draw inspiration from their rural location for their range and our judges loved Heartland’s amber appearance and rich, creamy texture, along with its layers of complex and delicious flavour.
Best Wine or Spirit
Sponsored by Marshall Wooldridge
WINNER: Rudgate Brewery – Yorkshire Gin
With an ever-expanding spirit industry in Yorkshire, this category is consistently packed with fantastic quality and sometimes quirky flavour combinations that always delight the Taste Award judges.
This year’s panel included experts who have previously judged at an international level in wine and spirit competitions and it’s safe to say they were suitably impressed with this year’s winning gin from Rudgate Brewery. “This is a world class product that would stand up against some of the very best. Rich and balanced with a delicious finish it’s a fantastic product and a very worthy winner – we absolutely love it!’
Best Hot Beverage
Sponsored by The Serious Sweet Company
WINNER: Dark Woods Coffee – Yemen Fawaz Ali Wahab Natural
Another category that threw a cat amongst the pigeons with this year’s judging panel, so much so that it was split into hot and cold winners to truly recognise the quality of this year’s entrants.
Our panel described our winning Hot Beverage from West Yorkshire based Dark Woods Coffee as “a fantastic light to medium roast. Complex, with a round, juicy body and bright acidity. Winey with notes of blueberry and hibiscus and pleasant lingering herbal notes. This coffee has been processed and roasted with great skills – a must try for all coffee lovers!”
Best Cold Beverage
Sponsored by The Serious Sweet Company
WINNER: SOWN – Carrot, Apple, Ginger, Lemon & Turmeric Cold Pressed Juice
With a real diversity throughout the category from tonics to juices, cordials to alcohol free spirits, it certainly proved tricky for our panel to pick out a winner for this year’s Best Cold Beverage category.
Our triumphant product from SOWN however really put a zing in their steps! “Fresh and appealing in appearance, it smells delicious and we can feel the health pouring out of it! It would be great as a long drink with fizzy water and ice or as a shot for a quick pick-me-up! A really versatile product and one we would happily buy.”
Best Sweet Preserve
WINNER: Just Delicious – Strawberry Jam
In a diverse category, simple and well-made products always shine through, and this year’s winner from Just Delicious who run a successful Tea Room in Pateley Bridge was no exception.
‘Quintessentially British and perfectly executed. This beautiful product encompasses everything you’d want from a really fantastic preserve. Bright and fresh and with a great smell, it looks and tastes artisan, with a perfect texture and a delicious hit of fruit. A seriously great example of a classic strawberry preserve and a very worthy winner.
Best Fresh Produce
Sponsored by Yorkshire Media
WINNER: The Organic Pantry – Sweetcorn
The Organic Pantry are a family run company based near Tadcaster who pride themselves on their organic credentials, producing fresh, bright and delicious produce delivered throughout the region and available throughout their online store.
This year’s winning product, which was up against a whole host of delicious, fresh and innovative entries met those standards perfectly and basically blew the judges socks off! “Humble yet full of flavour, this is a product that has been so well grown and is a credit to their skills and care as producers” said the panel.
The Judy Bell Yorkshire Food Hero
Sponsored by Masons of Yorkshire
WINNER: Tom Mellor, Spirit of Yorkshire Distillery & Wold Top Brewery
Nominated by their peers and decided on by the panel of Taste Award judges, this award has been renamed in honour of the late Judy Bell MBE, the original Yorkshire Food Hero and seeks to shine a light on someone who has championed the Yorkshire food and drink industry far and wide.
This year’s recipient is a stalwart of the industry in the county, founding and running not one, but 2 multi award-winning businesses and producing products enjoyed throughout the country and indeed around the world.
Inspiring, innovative, and forward thinking, Tom Mellor and his team have diversified and expanded, keeping up with trends and indeed setting new ones for many years from their base in East Yorkshire.
Our judges said: “Tom is a popular winner, building successful businesses alongside being a great ambassador of Yorkshire food and drink. A true Yorkshire Food Hero and a very worthy winner of this year’s award.”
Supreme Product Champion 2022
Lishman’s of Ilkley – York Air Dried Ham
Quite simply, the Supreme Product Award is the champion of champions. Selected as the stand-out product from this year’s entries, it is quite simply the product that blew our judges away – and this year’s winner, Lishman’s of Ilkley’s York Air Dried Ham, did just that.
As well as focussing on taste, texture and appearance, packaging is also taken into consideration and with a diverse range of fantastic products entered across the board this year, our judges had an incredibly hard task picking the overall winner.
This year’s Champion was praised for not only its taste and obvious quality, but also its clear and proud provenance. The team at Lishman’s pride themselves on their longstanding relationships with the farmers who supply them, selecting the highest quality meat and producing products with care and attention.
“A product produced with such skill and attention to detail that you could see the quality even before you tasted it.” said the judges. “A perfect example of skilled butchery and charcuterie and a stand-out product all round.”