Ludlow firms bag food awards
Turkey and ham pie, luxury hot chocolate and locally-pressed apple and mulberry juice are among the products from a Shropshire town that have bagged top rating at the national Great Taste awards.
Ludlow producers are celebrating after receiving top accolades following more than 60 days of judging by the Guild of Fine Food.
Out of a record breaking 12,300 products to be judged, 4,347 were awarded a highly prized Great Taste accolade, with 305 based in the Midlands.
One three star winner was Ludlow Food Centre's "generously filled” cutting pie, wrapped in seasoned pastry and packed with local turkey, Gloucester Old Spot ham and redcurrant sauce.
The centre, which is based on the Earl of Plymouth's Oakley estates at Bromfield, just outside Ludlow, also won three stars for its Gloucester Old Spot chorizo, two for its smoked back bacon and luxury hot chocolate and one for its truffle Cheese With No Name.
Managing director Jon Edwards said: “The Great Taste awards are the UK food producers Oscars, something that we all aspire to win but only the very best succeed.
"To have a product win a gold star tells our customers that they can buy with absolute confidence that it will not only deliver but exceed their expectations, that the product has been through one of the most vigorous judging processes in the industry and blind tasted by some of the most passionate foodies in the UK.
"To win a gold star is wonderful, to win with two or three gold stars is exceptional and this year has been exceptional – having won five awards of which four are two or three stars really is a huge achievement.
"It’s also a reflection of the knowledge, passion and drive that our team have to deliver some of the UK’s very best food. It's such an inspirational place to work.”
Meanwhile Ludlow-based apple juice company Appleteme, run by business partners Tish Dockerty and Jane Cullen, received a two star award for its apple and mulberry juice.
Jane Cullen said: "We’re thrilled to have received two stars, it’s great to get the recognition we feel our juice deserves. The two star award makes Appleteme one of the top 8 per cent of all entrants, across all food and drink categories.
"The awarded apple juice is combined with mulberries picked from mature trees in the historic centre of Ludlow. Feedback from judges said that the combination was a winning one, commenting ‘the balance is really well judged’."
Appleteme, now in its fifth year, won its first Great Taste award for its apple and damson in 2014.
The final honours in the awards, including the Great Taste 2017 Supreme Champion, will be announced at the Great Taste Golden Fork Awards Dinner on September 4, at the Intercontinental Park Lane Hotel, London.