This year saw our very first Cotswold Eats awards, something we decided to do a little differently. Most awards focus on lots of specific categories, but we find that can be restricting when so many of the food and drinks businesses could fall under multiple categories, or one category could be filled with tons of nominees and another could have very few.
So while nominees were listed under a specific category, such as 'Takeaway' or 'Bakery' or any other, they are simply awarded as part of the Top 10 Places or Top 10 Producers based on overall votes.
These Top 10 winners are entirely based on public vote, with thousands of total votes cast by you all, thank you! So without further delay, let's get into the first reveal...
Top 10 Producers 2018
10. Organic Farm Shop
A farm shop based on Abbey Home Farm in Cirencester, selling produce that is primarily home grown or from the local area. They are environmentally minded and have a big focus on animal welfare and ethical practices. Produce includes grass fed beef and organic vegetables, as well as providing community events and a teaching kitchen.
9. Cotswold Gold
Cotswold Gold are based in the North Cotswolds town of Broadway. They produce extra virgin rapeseed oil using cold press methods, preserving all the goodness and all the flavour too!
We met these guys at Cheltenham Food Festival this year and their oil is second to none.
8. Made by Bob
Made by Bob is the hardest to pin down to being either a 'place' or a 'producer', as they are popular for both their restaurant and their deli/catering. However, the original nomination and votes came in for their deli and catering side, so they feature in the Top 10 Producers.
Their deli produces freshly baked breads, pastries and cakes, homemade chutney's and sauces, as well as stocking charcuterie, cheese and more. Their catering is available for events and weddings, providing bespoke menus.
7. Sourdough Revolution
Sourdough Revolution are an artisan bakery in Lechlade, creating a variety of delicious sourdough loaves using no additives and no commercial yeast.
They don't have a traditionally long history or an old sourdough starter to work with, instead they have the perfect no compromise attitude to create something great.
6. Jolly Nice
Jolly Nice are a farmshop and takeaway based in Frampton Mansell (between Stroud and Cirencester). A lot of their produce comes direct from their own farm in Westonbirt, with an amazing variety of ice cream and free range meat available.
As well as the well stocked farmshop, they have an on-site cafe and kitchen producing delights like KFP (Kentucky Fried Pheasant).
5. Stroud Smokehouse
A small producer using traditional hot and cold smoking techniques and curing methods to create delicious meats, salmon, oils and more.
No set location for purchase, but frequenting Gloucester Farmer's Market every Friday and Stroud Farmers' Market on Saturday's.
4. Stroud Brewery
Thrupp, near Stroud
Stroud Brewery are an organic craft beer producer based in Thrupp, near Stroud. Their beer is brewed to organic standards and soil association certified, using mostly Cotswold grown malted barley. They produce a great selection of beers, with a range of special seasonal beers appearing throughout the year.
They have just moved into their larger premises, with their on-site informal bar and pizza oven to reopen soon. Their products are also available from our friends at Vinotopia Wine in Tetbury.
3. Fat Toni's Pizzeria
Fat Toni's has taken Cheltenham by storm over the last year, becoming a firm takeaway favourite amongst the town, as well as their success with popular locations in Stroud and Gloucester. Their pizza is huge, it's sourdough, it's available with a plethora of toppings, but most importantly it's delicious.
We are big fans of Fat Toni's, featuring their Cheltenham takeaway in an article earlier in 2018.
2. Hobbs House Bakery
Hobbs House has become a bit on an institution in the last few years. Originating in Chipping Sodbury, they have Nailsworth, Malmesbury and Tetbury stores, as well as two more added outside the Cotswolds in Bristol.
Their range of bread is brilliant, with lots of classics and interesting varieties. 'Severn Seeds' is a personal favourite at Cotswold Eats HQ.
1. The Cotswold Chippy
Mobile Food Truck
The Top Producer, as voted by you, is on wheels! The Cotswold Chippy is a mobile fish and chip shop based in Quenington, but serving towns and villages across The Cotswolds.
They have only been trading for just over a year, so they must be doing something right to have earned enough votes to be crowned your Top Producer! We're excited to see more from them as they continue their success.
Congratulations to all the Cotswold Eats Awards Top 10 Producers and to all the businesses who were nominated. Plus a big thank you to everyone who voted in the awards.
Don't forget to check out the Top 10 Places and keep an eye on our website over the coming months for in-depth articles and more.