"We are very fortunate in Warwickshire to have such a thriving food scene backed up by incredible suppliers. The foodie awards are a great way to celebrate what's great about our area."
More than 200 entries have been received for next month's Coventry & Warwickshire Foodie Awards, a prestige event which will celebrate the very best of the region's vibrant food and drink sector.
The Awards, in partnership with Visit Coventry and Visit Warwickshire, will culminate in a ceremony at The Box at Fargo Village, Coventry, on June 16th.
Entrants will showcase their talents to a panel of judges including chef Paul Foster who runs Salt, in Stratford-upon-Avon. Foster’s career has so far earned him a Michelin star, three AA rosettes and a place in the top 50 UK restaurants in The Good Food Guide.
He will be among those deciding on winners in categories which focus on quality, service and innovation, with an emphasis on farm to fork. Categories include best artisan food and drink producers, farm shop, independent food and drink retailer, newcomer, street food trader and chef or cook of the year.
Paul Foster said: "We are very fortunate in Warwickshire to have such a thriving food scene backed up by incredible suppliers. The foodie awards are a great way to celebrate what's great about our area."
New categories this year will recognise Foodie Start-up, Fine Dining Restaurant and Fine Dining Chef of the Year as well as the International Taste Award.
The Foodie Start-up Award, along with the Independent Food and Drink Business Award, have been sponsored by Warwickshire County Council.
"We are delighted to support these two categories at the Foodie Awards," said Warwickshire County Council's Lead Commissioner for Place Projects and Partnerships, Aaron Corsi. "The quality and range of Warwickshire's food and drink offer, and with so much of it locally-sourced, is breathtaking and the Foodie Award is a brilliant way to celebrate it."
The Casual Dining Chef of the Year category will be judged live on stage at the Warwick Pub in the Park event on 12 June with Bake Off winner Candice Brown. The Fine Dining Chef of the Year will be decided at a cook-off at The Farm Cookery School on June 7th.
Foodie Awards founder, Jonathan Smith, of Talk Business UK, said: “We have been inspired by the entries we have received in all of the award categories and look forward to having them all assessed and the finalists chosen for the next stage and the Awards presentation event.
“The Foodie Awards shines a spotlight on our region's brilliant Food and Drink sector and give recognition to all those who work so hard across this sector to give us all wonderful eating and drinking experiences.”
The Foodie Awards will once again raise money for The Trussell Trust network of eight food banks in Coventry and Warwickshire.
Any businesses interested in becoming sponsors are still invited to get in touch via: email@example.com.
For further information, please visit https://foodieawards.co.uk