Winners of the Coventry and Warwickshire Foodie Awards revealed

The Leamington Courier Series was also a sponsor for the Independent Food or Drink Retailer of the Year Award

Jonathan Smith Foodie Awards founder compered the evening. Photo by David Fawbert Photography
Jonathan Smith Foodie Awards founder compered the evening. Photo by David Fawbert Photography

The winners in the Coventry and Warwickshire Foodie Awards have been revealed.

In partnership with Visit Warwickshire and Visit Coventry, the awards, hosted by Fargo Village in Coventry last week, brought together more than 50 businesses vying for success across 17 food and drink categories.

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Finalists unveiled for the Coventry and Warwickshire Foodie Awards

The finalists came under the scrutiny of a judging panel made up of some well known names in the industry, including Michelin Star chef Paul Foster, who runs Stratford’s Salt restaurant, British Bake-off winner Candice Brown and food and drink broadcaster and champion Nigel Barden.

Warwickshire food blogger Ellen Manning, of Eat With Ellen, also helped judge the Fine Dining Chef cook-off.

Winners were chosen from 17 categories that focus on quality, service and innovation with an emphasis on farm to fork, including a public vote Community Award, and new this year, a new special award honouring a Food Hero, sponsored by Visit Coventry.

Foodie Awards Founder Jonathan Smith, of Talk Business UK, said: “I must admit to feeling humbled and inspired following the Foodie Awards presentation event.

"Meeting all the finalists and hearing their stories, feeling their passion for what they do and seeing how wonderfully supportive the food and drink folk are towards each other, was amazing.”

The awards also raised more than £500 through a raffle on the night for The Trussell Trust network of eight food banks in Coventry and Warwickshire.

Zoe Ballinger, of Trussell Trust, said: “Thank you to everyone at Foodie Awards 2022 for supporting the work for The Trussell Trust and Coventry and Warwickshire Foodbanks. We are very grateful for the generous donations we have received that will make a huge difference to the work we do in the community and ultimately the work to end food poverty.”

Here are the winners:

~ Food and Drink Experience Award – Enchanted Tea Room in Leamington

Co-owner Kelly Isles said: “This time last year we won the community hero award for feeding the NHS free meals during Covid at a time when our business was closed for 18 months. We didn’t know if we even had a business. This year’s award was perfect timing for us as we’ve worked so hard to save our business and are absolutely thrilled to win this award.”

~ Young Foodie Award – Veg Food Enthusiast - Katie Todd, Henley-in-Arden

Katie Todd said: “I am over the moon to be named Young Foodie of the Year and be recognised alongside so many fantastic people and businesses here in the Midlands. My mission is to show people that vegan food is delicious, enjoyable and in growing demand.”

~ Foodie Start-up Award – St Maur in Alcester

Co-owner William Seymour said: “We have won awards for St Maur internationally over our first two years in business but to win here at home is a success we can be very proud of. I would highly recommend to other food and drink start-ups to enter The Foodie Awards too and help build the fantastic community we saw coming together on the Awards night."

~ Best Casual Dining Establishment Award –Dough and Brew in Warwick

Owner John Martin said: “We were delighted and humbled to have won against such great competition, and having the award presented by culinary genius Paul Foster was also a great honour for the team.

We hope to continue to live up to expectations and thank everyone that has and continues to support us.”

~ International Taste Award Award – The Cork and Tile in Stratford

Neil Perry, owner, said: “What an incredible honour, we’re so grateful to everyone in Stratford Upon Avon for supporting us and we would like to thank all our partners within the Fred Winter Centre.”

~ Farm Shop of the year Award – The Farm in Stratford in Snitterfield

Charlie Wells, Director, said: “It’s such a great feeling to be recognised for all our hard work through these challenging times, and what fantastic farms shop to be alongside. We are thrilled.”

~ Artisan Drink Producer Award – Napton Cidery in Napton-on-the-Hill

Co-owner Charlotte Olivier said: “It was such a surprise to win this award and also flying the flag for craft cider. We are very passionate about what we do and so proud of this recognition.”

~ Artisan Food Producer Award – Vittle and Smoke in Southam

Owner Kieran Ingham-Burroughes said: “We are so happy to have won our very first award and humbled by the overwhelming number of messages of congratulations following the event.”

~ Fine Dining Restaurant of the Year Award – The Loft in Coventry

~ Fine Dining Chef of the Year Award – Tobias Reutt of Earlsdon Supper Club in Coventry

~ Independent Food or Drink Retailer of the Year Award (Sponsored by Leamington Courier) – LOLA Provisions in Leamington

Katie Jenson, who runs the business with her husband James, said: “We couldn’t be more humbled and touched for the recognition receiving this reward brings.”

~ The Best Cafe or Coffee Shop Award – Forrest Coffee House in Kenilworth

Molly said: “We’re thrilled to have won a Foodie Award for Coffee Shop of the Year, we have had a whirlwind year opening Forrest in the midst of a pandemic and welcoming our son Ned into the world so this is just the cherry on top and credit to our wonderful team.”

~ The Best Pub or Bar Award – The Coach House in Stratford

~ The Street Food Trader of the Year Award – Boxx ‘n Bar in Coventry

~ Best Casual Dining Chef Award – Sophie Hyam, Culinary Bites in Coventry

~ Employee of the Year Award – Kevin Prior – Metropolis Bar and Restaurant in Coventry

~ Community Award – Metropolis Bar and Restaurant in Coventry

~ Food Hero Award – Andrew Hartshorn, Finham Park 2 School in Coventry