Last night the Welsh True Taste awards took place in Abergavenny. It was a dazzling affair bringing together true foodies of Wales. A list of all the winners can be found on the True Taste website.
At the reception I met an array of people, from producers to promoters. There was a speech by the Minister for Rural Affairs Elin Jones which she commented that the awards recognize businesses that have reached a certain quality of product and just by being nominated they have done "exceptionally well". And after talking to various people at the ceremony I'd have to agree with Elin.
Everyone that I spoke to had a real passion for the Welsh food industry. The award ceremony seems to spurs companies on to be extremely successful and the best at what they do. I sipped on local Monnow Valley Brut and nibbled on fish pie canopies produced by Cardiff Caterers EJ Caterng. I felt privileged to amongst the people the people that produce the food and drink I love.
I spoke to Jeff Reader and Alexandra Tebby from Puffin Produce who supply Welsh Asda stores with their award winning potatoes. Jeff told me he "always looks for the Welsh label" when buying food and he often chooses Welsh over other leading brands. Alexandra informed that their contract with Asda has improved over the years. They can carry on supplying local stores and not just to Asda. Puffin Produce won the Gold Award in the Large Fresh Produce category, so I'll have to try and grab a pack of their potatoes and put them to the Sunday Roast test!
I also met some bodies from the Welsh Assembly who told me of the enormous preparation that goes into organizing such a huge event. They surprised me by telling me that anyone in the EU can enter the Welsh True Taste awards because it is EU funded! So maybe next year we'll see a winner from Germany or Italy...I wonder how that would go down?! Certainly not as well as the lovely food I had last night. The True Taste awards was a great event. It brings together so many people from rural communities in a celebration of Welsh food and drink. I can hardly wait until next year!