A GLITZY ceremony was held at Kendal College to celebrate the 20 winners and runners-up of this year’s Cumbria Food and Drink Awards.
Hosted by TV and radio pers-onality Stuart Maconie, the awards were presented to the county’s top places to eat, drink and shop, the best products, chefs and producers. Some of Cumbria’s top food and drink personalities and ambass-adors were also recognised.
The coveted ‘Judges’ Restaurant of the Year 2013’ was presented to Simon Rogan with judges desc-ribing his L’Enclume eaterie at Cartmel as ‘truly world-class’.
Businesses in the South Lakes boasted an impressive 14 winners, with Kitridding Farm, near Kirkby Lonsdale, taking the Best Farm Shop prize and Baba Ganoush in Kendal winning the gong for the Best Cafe/Tea Shop.
Judges said about Baba Ganoush: “This place is of a standard that you would expect to find in a trendy part of London with a combination of excellent service and really good food.
“With the husband and wife owners each specialising in main courses and desserts, they’re a great team. They’ve stuck their necks out and what they offer is extraordinary.”
Westmorland and Lonsdale MP Tim Farron said: “Cumbria and especially South Lakeland has world class food, produce and businesses. I think that we have such a fantastic calibre of outlets like Hawkshead Brewery, Baba Ganoush and people like Scott Fairweather of the The Punch Bowl Inn, Simon Thomas at Staff of Life Bakery, and the Drunken Duck Inn at Ambleside.”
Other winners included More! Bakery in Staveley, whose Lakeland treacle bread with walnuts and raisins won the title of ‘Cumbria’s Best product’, and Appleby Creamery, which was acclaimed ‘Best Small Producer’.