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Posts Tagged ‘Great Taste’

An Invitation To Great Taste Judging In Wales

12 May

A few weeks ago I received an invitation from the Guild Of Fine Food to judge at the Great Taste in Cardiff. The Great Taste Awards are respected world-wide and it is an award that Ian and I always recommend our Best Of Welsh & Borders producers to enter. I’ve always liked their star system. Basically because it was easy to understand and unlike Wales’ True Taste Awards, there isn’t just a first second and third in each category. I’ve never understood how this could be judged. GTA award one, two and three stars to any products that match their high standards. So for example, you could have just two, one star winners – ‘close to perfect’, five, two star winners – ‘faultless’ and seven three star winners – ‘wow you must taste this product’. Anyway I’m getting distracted, but that background is important, so back to my invitation which was to be a judge at these highly regarded top food awards. But I was puzzled asking – why me? But that’s putting it politely as to why on earth I would qualify to be part of the Welsh judging team and judge alongside some dedicated food experts. I never have, and never will, considered myself to be a food expert because quite simply I’m not. I’d always assumed, wrongly now it seems, that the GTA judges would be Michelin chefs and top food hall buyers. So I emailed asking for clarification and was told:

The Guild of Fine Food works really hard to build its judging panel full of chefs, food buyers, restaurateurs, food writers and critics, all of whom bring their own experience, knowledge and palate to provide constructive feedback for the producers. Everyone’s opinion counts around the judging table and judging teams are purposely grouped based on their diverse knowledge and experience, which is why producers value the feedback and shows what a rigorous process it is to awarding those Great Taste stars.

After promoting GTA for so many yeas, I now feel a little disillusioned that the judges aren’t all those with professional palates. So I’ve declined their kind invitation and just hope I’ve made the right decision. Actually, as a foodie journalist I’d think I’d have a much better time and learn much, much more if I could attend the judging but as a fly on the wall. But as it is food being judged, I guess I’d get quickly swatted!!!!!

Great Taste have accepted my decision, but hope Igll do it next year just not sure how anything will change from my side by next year. Anyway GTA have said they’ll send me their winners through, I guess with the hope that I’ll cover it for them. But as regular readers will know, if GTA are not advertising and supporting us, then that will not happen. I’ve still not a VAT number not a charity number!
So good luck to all our Best Of Welsh & Borders producers, showing off the best of Welsh food and drink,  who are entering and don’t forget to let me know your experience and how you got on…………….