A night to remember at Yeo Valley HQ with fine dining, celebrations and Tin and Thyme winning Best Food Blog in the Food Awards 2016.
Food Awards 2016
Well, I’ve only gone and done it! Much to my huge astonishment I found on Monday night that I’d won the Best Food Blogger in the Food Awards 2016. Bowled over is an understatement. I was so convinced I wouldn’t win that when Tin and Thyme was announced as the winner, I didn’t properly register it.
For those not in the know, the Food Reader Awards is an annual celebration of food in the UK’s South West region. Salt Media and its widely read Food magazine initiated the event five years ago in order to celebrate good food.
Winning is a prestigious accolade for food people in the South West, comprising Gloucester, Bristol, Somerset, Dorset, Devon and of course Cornwall. There are thirteen categories in total, including best food blog. The Food Awards occasion itself is an event I’ve long wanted to attend and this year I got my chance.
I wasn’t aware, initially, that I’d been nominated for the award. It wasn’t until Tin and Thyme got through to the Food Awards shortlist that this fact impinged itself on my consciousness. A second round of voting took me through to the finals. Then Salt Media invited me up to Yeo Valley HQ for an evening of fine dining, people watching and the grand unveilings.
Fine Dining at Yeo Valley
We started proceedings with a glass (or two) of Knighton Cornish sparkling wine and fabulous canapés from Bioaqua and Homewood. We then sat down to a four course meal made with local produce and matched with local beers and ciders.
I was rather taken with the Frobishers Sparkling Ginger, which was nice and fiery and meant I didn’t indulge in more alcohol than was good for me. With well over a hundred guests, there were only seven vegetarians present, but the Yeo Valley chefs did us proud.
Tin and Thyme Wins Best Food Blogger 2016
No sooner had we finished our starters than the Best Food Blogger 2016 was announced. Tin and Thyme was a finalist along with Veggie Desserts and Eating Exeter. I’d been theorising to CT that our table, which was the furthest from the stage, couldn’t possibly have any winners. How wrong I was.
I was even more surprised by this win than I was by getting my cashew nut butter brownies published in the Cranks Bible.
Off I stumbled up the aisles to the stage, in a complete daze. I remember shaking hands with Jo Rees and Michael Caines MBE, who presented me with my rather fabulous wooden plaque come chopping board. Rest assured I will never draw a knife across its surface.
I’ve no idea what I said, but CT assures me I didn’t make a complete fool of myself. Michael Caines was himself a winner that night. Needless to say, I didn’t get to reciprocate by presenting him with his chopping board for Best Food Hero. One can but dream.
Food Awards 2016 – Cornish Wins
Cornwall gave a very good account of itself on the night (hooray!) and won best: Food Cafe, Cookery School, Wine List, Farm Shop, Restaurant, Hotel, Foodie Pub and weirdly, food blogger. For the complete list of winners and grand finalists head to the Food Awards.
Here’s to an excellent 2016 for all food lovers and readers of this blog. Thanks to everyone who voted for me. Also to Salt Media, Yeo Valley and all the sponsors for organising such a splendid event. I may not yet be part of the stretch limo jet set, but my rates are very reasonable 😉
Keep in Touch
Thanks for visiting Tin and Thyme. If you’ve ever attended a similar event or been a food awards winner, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below. Do share photos on social media too and use the hashtag #tinandthyme, so I can spot them.
If you’d like see a few more events I’ve attended, both in the South West and further afield, follow the link and you’ll find I have a few of them.
Top photo and the one of the dining area courtesy of Food Reader Awards / Guy Harrop Photography