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Cotswold food marque launches
Cotswold Taste, the new quality marque for food and drink producers in the Cotswolds, is officially launching on Thursday 10th November at The Blanket Hall, Witney, Oxfordshire.
Cotswold Taste is a member-owned co-operative and has a growing number of members – large and small – from across the food chain, including producers, suppliers, retailers and hospitality outlets, and supporting businesses and organisations. Among big name members and associates are The Royal Agricultural University, Midcounties Co-operative, Wadworth & Co Ltd, and Handelsbanken Cirencester.
“We’re celebrating excellence in a lot of areas”, says Nick Waloff, first Chair of Cotswold Taste. “The Cotswolds are home to some great food and drink products. Food and drink are vital to the future prosperity of the region in many ways. It’s time we got the message across even more effectively than at present. Cotswold Taste is one way to do this, working in partnership with our food and drink producers”.
The group say that the Cotswold Taste quality marque will only be awarded to organisations with high production standards and commitment to sustaining the Cotswolds environment.
It will be rolled out gradually across the Cotswolds, with further regional launches planned for 2017.
Southampton Harbour Hotel on target to open in 2017
The final phase of the redevelopment of Southampton’s Ocean Village is on schedule for completion in 2017 and will introduce a five-star standard Harbour Hotel to the city.
The 85 bedroom building will feature a spa, gym and swimming pool, along with the group’s award-winning Jetty restaurant and a rooftop champagne bar overlooking the marina development.
Bouygues Ltd are the constructors of the project. Darren Gill, Bouygues UK Managing Director for the South said: “Ocean Village has revitalised this part of Southampton and we are very proud to be part of such an important development. Reaching this stage of the overall scheme is a fantastic milestone in the city’s regeneration programme and we are pleased to be making such good progress in a city which continues to be a strong and important market for us.”
Mike Warren, Managing Director of Harbour Hotels, said of the development: “We are delighted that our new Southampton Harbour Hotel & Spa is on course for opening in 2017. We are very confident that the hotel, award-winning Jetty restaurant concept, luxury Harbour Spa and flexible function spaces will prove a fabulous addition to the city.”
St Austell brew stout for M&S
Marks & Spencer have commissioned St Austell Brewery to create a new exclusive Cornish stout as part of its Cornish beer range.
6 Malt Cornish Stout is a 4.5% ABV brew and joins three other bespoke beers created for M&S by St Austell – Cornish Red Ale, Cornish Pale Ale and Cornish IPA. The new stout uses six British malts in the recipe: pale, crystal, chocolate, malted oats, smoked malt and roasted barley, with English fuggles hops and liquorice root to “give extra complexity to the brew.”
Jenny Rea, Product Developer (Beer, Cider, Spirits and Alcoholic Drinks) at Marks & Spencer, said: “We are really pleased to offer another bottle-conditioned beer from St Austell Brewery. This delicious, smooth winter-warmer stout is made from six different malts and Cornish spring water and is a fantastic addition to our beer range.”
Roger Ryman, St Austell Brewery’s Head Brewer, said: “Marks & Spencer champions regional produce and really values the provenance of a product. When the M&S team tasted our popular Mena Dhu Stout they loved it, so we decided to create a variety of stout especially for them.”
Milk vending machine serves it fresh from the farm
A farmer in Somerset is selling his milk at the farm gate after investing in a Swiss-made vending machine that dispense his herd’s milk when it’s a few hours old.
Josh Hares from Frome Road Farm at East Horrington has dubbed it the Horrington Milk Hut. Local people can buy the family-run dairy farm’s milk for £1 a litre, with a traditional glass bottle also available for £1 if you don’t bring your own container.
Josh said to Somerset Live: “We used to get lots of people coming to us and asking if they could buy milk from the farm, and now it’s available. The milk we put in at 7.45am is that morning’s milk that’s been pasteurised, and the afternoon milk will come from the afternoon milking…It took a lot of paperwork to get Environmental Health happy with it, but they were a great help in sorting it out.”
Taste of Dorset 2016 winners
Some of Dorset’s finest food and drink producers, pubs and restaurants were celebrated at the 2016 Taste of Dorset Awards, held on 31st October at the George Albert Hotel in Evershot.
Cooking legend Prue Leith, most recently seen on BBC2’s Great British Menu, hosted the gala dinner and 250 guests were there to see the gongs being handed out.
Winners included: Best Bakery – Orchard Bay Bakery, Cranborne; Best Brewer – The Brew Shack, Wimborne; Best Dairy Producer – Baboo Gelato Ltd, Bridport; Best Restaurant or Dining Pub – La Fosse at Cranborne, who also scooped the Food or Drink Business of the Year and the Lifetime Achievement Award went to Steve, Graham and Sue Fudge of Thomas J Fudge.
Carluccio’s plans first Cornish restaurant
The company have submitted plans for its first Cornish opening in Truro. The site on Boscawen Street, formerly clothes retailer Austin Reed, joins the chain’s 100 other venues in the UK, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates.
A premises licence application has been submitted to Cornwall Council stating their intention to open until 12:30am Monday to Saturday and 11pm on Sundays , according to West Briton. Carluccio’s employs 2900 people across its 100 branches and saw its profits dip from £7.7m to £5.2m last year. Chief Executive, Neil Wickers recently said the company would open 12 sites a year, following investment from owner, Jagtiani Foundation.
Cornwall Tourism Award winners
78 winners were celebrated in the 15th year of Cornwall Tourism Awards, presented on the 3rd November at a ceremony attended by Sir Tim Rice.
Top winners on the night included Hendra Holiday Park, picking up the Winner of Winners trophy alongside Golds for Sustainable Tourism and Holiday Parks. There was also an Outstanding Contribution award to Looe’s Mark Camp for his services to tourism as well as a posthumous Special Award for Innovation to Tim Reed of Tredethick Farm Cottages.
For as full list of winners see www.cornwalltourismawards.org.uk
FOOD & DRINK NEWS
Arkell’s steam ahead with new brew
Arkell’s Brewery are releasing their final special Steam beer on 7th November as part of its celebration of Swindon’s railway heritage.
Steam Powered is a 4% ABV dark mild ale using four different malts to “create a deep and complex flavour of chocolate, caramel and coffee – perfect for warming the body on nippy, autumnal evenings. The malt is then layered with a piney finish from a special blend of English-grown hops.”, according to the brewer.
Head brewer Alex Arkell said: “I’ve loved creating these special ales to celebrate the town’s railway heritage. Swindon has a lot to be proud of.”
Countdown to Christmas with a Chase advent calendar
Chase distillery, who make all their spirits on the family farm in Herefordshire, are launching their advent calendar for December 2016.
The calendar includes 24 miniatures of 14 different Williams Chase products including Williams GB Gin, Chase Elderflower Liqueur and Chase Rhubarb Vodka to name but a few. It’s available nationwide including in Selfridges, John Lewis and 31 Dover Street for £130.
Former bankers buy Somerset gastropub
Newcomers to the hospitality trade, Simon MacLeod and Mike Rose have left senior management positions in the banking sector to take over an award-winning gastropub in Somerset’s Blackdown Hills. They bought the Candlelight Inn in Bishopswood which had a market price of £600,000 following a nationwide search for their ‘dream property’ through hospitality specialists Colliers International.
Mike said: “In our previous lives we had advised people on investing into the hospitality sector and lent money to enable them to buy a pub, hotel or restaurant – and we really wanted to get involved. We fell in love with the stunning location and fabulous food.”
Colliers International hotels Director Peter Brunt said the Candlelight Inn was both smart and unusually spacious with 130 covers, adding “I am sure Simon and Michael have got a fantastic business going forward. Their first venture into the hospitality sector backs up what we have been saying about the investment potential for a good pub or hotel.”
Chef moves from Soho Farmhouse to Lucky Onion
Ronnie Bonetti has been appointed executive chef of the cotswold-based Lucky Onion group of hotels.
He joins from Soho Farmhouse on the 14th November to plan the menus and manage the kitchens of six properties including the flagship No. 131 hotel in Cheltenham as well as No. 38 The Park and Tavern restaurant, also in Cheltenham and three pubs: The Wheatsheaf Inn in Northleach, The Wild Duck, near Cirencester and the Chequers in Churchill.
Bonetti has worked at Soho House & Co since 2008, starting as head chef at Babington House, near Frome, Somerset, then overseeing all the company’s UK kitchens before running the restaurants at Soho Farmhouse in Oxfordshire.
New Covent Garden Soup Server
The UK’s most popular chilled soup brand is now available in a new ‘plug and play’ dispensing system from R H Hall. The New Covent Garden Soup Server uses patented durable soup pouches and can hold soup up to 12 hours, making it easy, hygienic and safe to fill. Each of the two litre pouches carries a unique barcode containing batch information for tracking and tracing ingredients, ensuring conformity to HACCP guidelines.
It can be set up for back or self-serve with a variety of payment options making it: “The ideal choice for a wide range of foodservice environments – cafés, service stations, schools and many more…creating a great opportunity for additional revenue in any environment.” according to R H Hall. Go to www.rhhall.com for more details.
Food Glorious Food by Responsible Hospitality Partnership Ltd
7th November 2-5pm
Kingston Maurward, Dorset DT2 8PY
“This free event is one of a series designed to build partnerships between tourism and cultural businesses for the economic benefit of both. Experience local food and drink, learn about where they can buy it and work with local artists and tourism specialists to hone their talent in using local food to attract more and higher spending tourists.”
The European Pizza & Pasta Show
9th – 10th November
“The European Pizza and Pasta Show is an exclusive B2B trade event and is set to bring the fast-growing pizza and pasta market into the spotlight by uniting leading UK and European food wholesalers and retailers, pizza operators and pizzeria owners, restaurant chains and independent restaurants, hotels and catering companies with equipment manufacturers, specialist ingredients suppliers and service providers.”
Food matters live…..
22nd – 24th November
“Food matters live is fast becoming the best place for retailers to discover the latest products and innovation driving demand among health conscious consumers. Refresh your shelves and menus with some of the most exciting new products to have launched in the last 6 months – and meet the innovators setting food and drink trends.”
The Hotel Catey’s
Park Plaza, Westminster Bridge
“Since their launch in 2007, the Hotel Cateys have celebrated the most successful hotels, hoteliers and hotel employees across the UK. They were created to recognise and reward those individuals and teams that work tirelessly to ensure their business delivers an exceptional guest experience, day in, day out.”
The Gram Go Green Summit 2016
The Soho Hotel, London
“Back by popular demand, this Autumn’s Gram Go Green Summit is getting ready to tackle the issue of sustainability across an ever-changing foodservice landscape. The Summit’s exciting line-up of industry experts including Kirsty Saddler from popular restaurant chain Leon, Mike Hanson from BaxterStorey and celebrity Eco chef, Tom Hunt is ready to arm caterers and business owners with in-depth knowledge and simple tools to help them work towards a more financially and environmentally sustainable future for the wider industry.”
The tastes (and smells) of 2017
Prepare to cancel your regular order of chia seeds, cactus water and coconut flour. They are so 2016, according to Waitrose’s annual survey of how the UK eats, drinks, cooks and shops.
Their report, which sampled 2000 shoppers of all supermarkets, predicts in 2017 that Britons will be snacking on vegetable flavoured yoghurts, tucking into Hawaiian poke – a raw fish salad – and washing it all down with watermelon juice. These were just some of the new food trends they identified in The Waitrose Food & Drink Report 2016.
The survey also has some fascinating data on our changing relationship with food, like the revelation that a third of those aged 18 to 34 regularly post pictures of their meals on social media. In fact, one in five Britons has posted a picture of their food on social media or sent it to a friend, in the last month and 44% of us would make more effort with our cooking is we think a photo might be posted.
Waitrose conclude that people are increasingly seeing food as a part of their identity, taking pride in what and how they eat. Waitrose Managing Director Rob Collins: “As a nation we’re expressing ourselves through food as never before. From healthy eating, to the explosion of food photography on social media, to our desire to entertain others through cooking – food is today’s hottest social currency; through it, we tell others about ourselves.”
This trend is influencing restaurants. Rochelle Venables, editor of the Good Food Guide, said photogenic food pulls in bookings: “Restaurants today tend to have one dish on the menu that is really Instagrammable and people often go to a specific restaurant just to say they have had that dish.”
Other key trends identified by the retailer include: healthy eating now being ‘just a part of who we are’ and a part of everyday life; ‘doing the right thing’ has become second nature with 80% of us actively considering how and where our food is sourced; and the lines between eating out and eating in are blurring with people increasingly making staying in an event.
And if you are staying in, why not serve a perfume-inspired cocktail to your guests? Waitrose say they will be big and very fragrant in 2017, following the collaboration between Givenchy and London Café Royal this summer.