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Classic Smoked Salmon Fillet scoops Great Taste Golden Fork award for Scotland

13/09/2023
Richard Hunt-Smith and Sarah Fulton from Loch Fyne Oysters with Iain Baxter from sponsor Scotland Food & Drink.

WINNERS of the Great Taste Golden Forks 2023 – the grand finale of the world’s largest food and drink accreditation scheme based entirely on taste – have been revealed.

Announced on Monday 11 September at a ceremony held at Battersea Arts Centre attended by food industry experts, the Great Taste Golden Fork trophy for Scotland has been awarded to Loch Fyne Oysters from Argyll, for its Loch Fyne Kinglas Fillet. 

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Described as “delicately smoked, soft, creamy and tender”, the Kinglas Fillet is made from the centre cut taken from the crown of a classic smoked salmon fillet, cured with brown sugar and sea salt then gently smoked over oak shavings from retired whisky casks, resulting in a mild, delicate flavour and moist texture. It impressed the Great Taste judges with its “stunning pink and orange appearance” and its “buttery in the mouth, almost creamy, but clean and silky” characteristics at every stage of the blind-tasted judging process across 89 days in Dorset and London. An incredible 14,195 product entries from 3,609 artisan food and drink companies across the world were tasted and considered for the black and gold badge of honour.

Rising to the top of hundreds of other entries from Scotland, this “beautiful” Kinglas Fillet was celebrated as the best tasting product in its country at the highly anticipated awards ceremony which marks the culmination of Great Taste 2023, dubbed the ‘Oscars’ of the food & drink world.

John Farrand, managing director at the Guild of Fine Food, commented: “Announcing the Great Taste Golden Fork winners is always a huge honour and a real celebration of all of the producers reaching the finale of the Great Taste judging season.

“After months of rigorous blind-tasting and judging with a team of over 500 judges, it is fantastic to reveal the award-winning products and celebrate the producers’ hard work and innovation. It’s been an exceptional year for both creative and traditional food and drink entries, with many products showing us that well-made food and drink will always stand out when put to the test.Huge congratulations from all of us at the Guild to all the award winners who have risen to the top and proven to be the best of the best international food and drink. Thank you to everyone who was involved in another successful year of Great Taste.”   

For more information on Loch Fyne Oysters, see here: www.lochfyne.com.

For 2023, Roussas Galoytri P.D.O. took home the highest accolade of all, the 2023 Great Taste Supreme Champion, for its Roussas Galotyri P.D.O., soft Greek cheese made from sheep and goats’ milk. Further Golden Fork trophies were given for various categories, including the Great Taste Startisan of the Year award which saw La Maritxu win for its La Maritxu Basque Cheesecake, the Nigel Barden Heritage Award which saw The Newt in Somerset win for its Ice Cyder, and the Guild of Fine Food Contribution to Food and Drink award, which was awarded to Silvija Davidson.

The Great Taste Golden Fork from Scotland was sponsored by Scotland Food and Drink. Also nominated this year were the Great Taste 3-star Jalapeno Ketchup Dead Hot Sauce fromTrodden Black based in Dollar, Clackmannanshire, and Sea Salt Caramel Filled Bar from Chocolatia based in Forfar, Angus. 

What is Great Taste? 

Recognised as a stamp of excellence and actively sought out by food lovers and retailers alike, Great Taste, organised by the Guild of Fine Food, values taste above all else. All products in the line-up for judging are blind-tasted: every product is removed from its packaging so it cannot be identified, before entering a robust, layered judging process.

New for this year and to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Great Taste, the Guild of Fine Food offered 50 micro producers the chance to put one new product in front of its expert panel of Great Taste judges for free. The bursary was aimed at micro producers who have never entered Great Taste before or have a new product which has never been entered before. 2023 saw 21 products entered through the bursary scheme win a Great Taste award including Karobi’s Ghee from Karobi’s (3-star), New Alt from Antur Brew Co. (3-star), Shoogle Junniperous Scottish Navy Strength Gin from Shoogle Spirits (2-star) and Traditional Napa Cabbage Kimchi from The Ferm (1-star).   

Great Taste’s prestigious judging panel is made up of over 500 food and drink professionals, including critics, chefs, recipe creators, buyers, retailers, journalists, broadcasters, and experts in the field. This experienced panel, each with trusted palates, have together tasted and re-judged the 3-star winning products to determine the Golden Fork winners, as well as the Great Taste Supreme Champion of 2023.

The full list of this year’s winners can be found at www.greattasteawards.co.uk and a wide range of the award-winning products are available to buy in delis, farm shops and independent retail outlets.

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