November 8, 2012
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Earlier this year I was honoured to be asked to be a judge for the Wales True Taste Awards as a result of my blog and food writing. As a food lover living in Wales, I know that receiving an award is a true accolade and I was very excited to be able to be a part of selecting the products worthy of an award.
The Award ceremony was a few weeks ago and I took my seat on the night with winners and hopefuls.
This year the ceremony took place at The Showground in Builth Wells and we were treated to a three course feast that included produce from winners prepared by E J catering.
My table was very award heavy with two awards going to Subzero, two to Forte’s and a gold award for Cardiff preserve maker, Eira from Inner City Pickle for her Mostarda di Frutta.
A gold for Subzero
It was very interesting to see who won the categories that I judged. The judging was blind so although I knew the products we had picked, I didn’t know who made them. I was delighted to discover that the winner of the Other Speciality Foods category that I judged was the fabulous Claire’s Kitchen from Newport. Claire’s lemon curd was absolutely wonderful, so good that I actually took it home with me after judging because I couldn’t bear to see it thrown away.
Other winners of my judging categories included a Bronze Award and a Gold Award for Carmathenshire Cheese Company in the Large Cheese Producer category, and Munchcake Gluten Free Goodies for Special Dietary Options category.
June 13, 2012
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I love writing about food and I of course love eating it too but something that I never expected when I started out was the opportunities that would come my way as a result. This year I have been involved in judging some excellent baking competitions and it is something that I thoroughly enjoy so when I was asked to judge the True Taste Awards 2012, I was over the moon!
The True Taste Awards celebrate the best Welsh food and drink that Wales has to offer with its annual award ceremony. It aims to raise awareness of Welsh food and drink among consumers and increase the consumption of Welsh food by the hospitality industry and the public sector in Wales.
The amount of food I had to eat over my two days of judging was daunting to say the least but I met some fantastic people and it was great to have fellow bloggers Gomezadams and Cardiffbites to chat to in-between munching our way through hundreds of products.
With over 700 products to judge over two days we had our work cut out but we were put into groups and assigned categories so that we could really get to know the products we were tasting. Over the two days, I had the speciality foods category which included ‘free-from’ items and cheese from large producers category. I have to say I was grateful for my categories as they allowed me to true such a wide range. The speciality food category had everything from meat to cakes to curries. I tried some truly amazing products and some truly terrible ones!
Judging was out of 100 with points deducted for flaws in a number of categories. I can’t go into detail about the products I tasted but I will say this. Wales has some fantastic products on offer with some scoring 100 out of 100. I was so impressed by some of the products and I am so excited about the Awards Ceremony in October so that I can find out who made them. Judging is blind so we have no idea who made each product.
However, it wasn’t all high scores and high class and some products just didn’t hit the mark. It was tough competition though and a lot of work went into creating the food that we spent two days eating. I just hope that I get this experience again because it was so fantastic to be involved and to have the honour of judging such excellent food.