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Chesterfield Food & Drink Awards Winners 2019

Published On Sunday 27 Oct 2019 by Sticky Beak
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The Chesterfield Food and Drink Awards 2019 winners were announced at a glittering awards ceremony at The Winding Wheel Theatre in October.

One of Chesterfield’s oldest Italian restaurants, Lombardi’s has been named as the town’s Restaurant of the Year, taking the top honour in the seventh annual Food and Drink Awards.

More than 260 people attended what has become the biggest night of the year for Chesterfield’s food and drink community, which was hosted by celebrity chef Brian Turner CBE. The awards are also a hands-on learning experience for headline sponsor, Chesterfield College’s hospitality students, who served canapés to guests at the venue.

In addition to Lombardi's, 14 bars, restaurants, food producers, cafés and individuals also scooped an accolade across 15 categories at the awards.

Restaurant of the Year – sponsored by Chesterfield Borough Council

Bottle & Thyme – Finalist
Ciuri Ciuri Restaurant – Finalist
Lombardi’s Italian Restaurant – Winner

Christina and Daniel Power, owners of Lombardis said: “It feels incredible to win this award after being in this business for 18 years. It’s amazing to be acknowledged for what we do – bringing the real taste of Italy to Chesterfield since 2002.

“We are regarded as an institution in the town, but we’re not standing still. We have just expanded the business to create more seating and will create an outdoor seating area next year to meet demand from our customers.”

Café and Tea Room of the Year – sponsored by Kier

H&F Vintage Tearooms – Finalist
The Lilypad Cafe & Restaurant – Winner
Qoozies – Finalist

Ryan Purrington, Head Chef and Manager at The Lilypad Café & Restaurant, said: “It feels incredible to win. We have worked hard all year for this. We are innovative and make a point of doing our own thing to stand out from the crowd. At the minute we are undergoing a huge refurb and re-opening on 3 November with some exciting things to come.”

Gastro Pub of the Year – sponsored by Banner Jones Solicitors

The Market Pub – Finalist
The Rectory – Winner
The Red Lion at Peak Edge Hotel – Finalist

Rebecca Walker, General Manager of The Rectory, said: “This is the third time we’ve been nominated for the award but the first year we have won, and it feels absolutely amazing. Over the last year we have really pushed the boundaries with our menu and worked hard to find out what Chesterfield wants and it’s paid off.”

Pub/Bar of the Year – sponsored by University of Derby

Pump + Grind – Winner
The Rose and Crown, Brampton – Finalist
The Three Horseshoes – Finalist

Oliver Perez, Operations Director of Pump + Grind said: “It feels fantastic to win the award. We’ve put a lot of hard work in over the last two years and it’s great to be recognised for this. People like Pump + Grind because we try to do things differently. We take our inspiration from the big towns and cities and bring it to Chesterfield. It’s a great town to go out in and has a brilliant food and drink scene which we love being part of and are looking to do more as we develop our food menu further.”

Chesterfield’s Best Newcomer – sponsored by BHP Chartered Accountants

Afat’s Grill – Finalist
Pig & Pump – Finalist
Sorbo Lounge – Winner

Caleb Wilkes, Assistant Manager at Sorbo Lounge said: “A massive thank you to everyone in Chesterfield who helped us win this award. We’ve worked hard to make Sorbo Lounge a place where everyone feels welcome and this award tell us that we have achieved that. And we want to do even more. Next year we have lots of things planned to fundraise for the charity we’re supporting – The Tom Henson Charity and Defib Map. It’s going to be very exciting for all the team and our customers.”

Best Customer Service – sponsored by East Midlands Chamber

Bottle & Thyme – Winner
Junction Bar – Finalist
The Lilypad Cafe & Restaurant – Finalist

Third time winners at the award, owners of Bottle & Thyme Hannah and Gavin Grainger, said: “It feels brilliant to win an award for customer service as we work so hard with the team to get it right. We have lovely customers so it’s a real pleasure so delivering great service feels really instinctive as it’s a pleasure to have a chat ad catch up with them.”

“Moving forward, as a business we’re going to continue to push to be more environmentally friendly. That has been a big focus for us in 2019 and will be in 2020.”

Best Out of Town – sponsored by Shorts Chartered Accountants

The Horse & Jockey, Wessington – Finalists
Orangery Restaurant, Darley Dale – Finalists
Southgate Brasserie at Van Dyk by Wildes – Winner

Nick Wilson, Executive Chef at Southgate Brasserie said: “It’s amazing to win and the culmination of a year’s hard work – it’s the cherry on the cake. People like us because we’re accessible and cater for all tastes from a simple roast dinner through to Rosette-winning cuisine.”

Chesterfield Food Producer of the Year – sponsored by Edge Events Management Ltd

Crooked Pickle Co – Finalist
Derbyshire Distillery – Winner
Moss Valley Fine Meats – Finalist

David Hemstock, Co-founder and Head Distiller of Derbyshire Distillery said: “This award means everything to us. It’s far beyond what we thought we could achieve when we established the business only 14 months ago. We’ve now got purpose-built premises at Markham Vale which has given the business space to grow and develop even further.  Despite the growth in production, our focus will remain on quality; from the ingredients in our products to the fact that the entire gin making process is all done under one roof and by us – that’s what really sets us apart.”

Young Chef of the Year – sponsored by Owen Taylor & Sons

Callum Fitzpatrick – Finalist
Jake Parkin – Winner
Sophia Johnson – Finalist

Jake Parkin said: “When I heard my name called out, I was absolutely thrilled. I was confident I’d done well in the cooking element of competition but to actually win the award means the world to me. The Young Chef of the Year Award is the start of my career to eventually become a head chef. The whole experience has been exciting but nerve wracking.”

International Restaurant of the Year – sponsored by MSE Hiller

Cocina at Casa Hotel – Winner
Delhi 41 – Finalist
O-Tokuda – Finalist

Luke Gregory, Resident Manager at Casa Hotel said: “It feels absolutely amazing to win the award. We’re overjoyed. We pride ourselves on our service and locally sourced food to deliver an excellent experience for customer and this comes through in our customer feedback – they tell us they love Cocina’s relaxed atmosphere and quality food.”

Family Friendly Award – sponsored by Jumble Creative Design

The Bulls Head, Holymoorside – Finalist
Chesters – Winner
The Six Halts, Clay Cross – Finalist

Chris Ioannides, Owner of Chesters said: “To win this award for the fourth time in a row feels brilliant. The whole team is so proud as we all work hard to ensure we have the best environment for families who dine with us as we know that keeping the kids entertained is the key to the whole family enjoying their meal.

“We’re hoping to give even more families a taste of Chesters soon as we’re expanding the business into Markham Vale next year with the opening of a new restaurant and drive through. Exciting times are ahead.”

Apprentice of the Year – sponsored by Apprentice Town (led by Chesterfield Borough Council)

Denny Pearson – The Bulls Head, Holymoorside – Finalist
Donna McMahon – Van Dyk by Wildes – Winner
Stuart Mcardle – The Tickled Trout – Finalist

Donna McMahon said: “I am astonished to have won Apprentice of the year as. I am an older apprentice and people just assume that apprenticeships are for younger people. I decided to do a Business Administration apprenticeship because my employer wanted to invest in me and it was an opportunity to develop myself. Everything I have learnt in the apprenticeship so far is really helping me in my job role. I would definitely recommend an apprenticeship to anyone, regardless of their age, who wants to develop themselves and build their knowledge.”

Apprentice Employer of the Year – sponsored by Learning Unlimited (The Chesterfield College Group)

Ringwood Hall Hotel & Spa – Winner
Stephenson’s Tea & Coffee House – Finalist
The Tickled Trout – Finalist

Michael Nash, Operations Director at Ringwood Hall Hotel & Spa, said: “The apprentices work really hard in the business and this award also recognises their contribution. Apprenticeships bring immeasurable value to the business and are  a double-edged sword for both us and the apprentices. Everyone benefits.”

Conference Venue of the Year

Casa Hotel – Winner
Chatsworth House – Finalist
Ringwood Hall Hotel & Spa – Finalist

Maroslava Hanatova, Conference Manager at Casa Hotel said: “We’re delighted to win the award. It is well deserved by all the team – from sales to operations. We offer the whole package – from food, passionate staff and accommodation – and I believe it is this which really sets us apart from other venues in the area.”

Chesterfield Food Hero – sponsored by Casa Hotel

Chris Mapp – The Tickled Trout

Chris Mapp, Head Chef and Owner of The Tickled Trout said: “I am over the moon, surprised and humbled to receive this recognition. I am passionate about the industry and also Chesterfield because it’s home and also because we have such fantastic produce on the doorstep in the Peak District and South Yorkshire. Youngsters beginning their career need to understand how food works – taste over presentation using locally sourced food is an excellent starting point. It’s an amazing industry to work in.”