October 24th, 2016
Biddenden owner Julian Barnes has been crowned Kent’s Food and Drinks Hero of the Year at the Kent Life and Kent on Sunday Food and Drink Awards 2016, which were held earlier this month at the Ashford International Hotel. Biddenden also reached the top three in the Drink Producer of the Year category, which was awarded to Anno Distillers, Marden.
The prestigious Kent Life and Kent on Sunday Food and Drink Awards, which launched in 2013, are designed to champion, highlight and offer a showcase to the great and the good from the region’s food and drink industry, including local producers and suppliers, small farming businesses, chefs, pubs, restaurants and hoteliers.
This year’s awards witnessed a record number of nominations spread across 11 different categories, with the top three finalists in each category enjoying a sparkling wine reception that included Biddenden’s Gribble Bridge Sparkling Rosé, 2012 and Red Love apple juice, followed by a three-course meal with Biddenden’s Ortega, 2014 before the winners were unveiled.
Julian Barnes, Managing Director at Biddenden, comments: “I am very honoured to have been awarded the Kent Food and Drink Hero of the Year award, it was a complete surprise as they don’t announce the finalists for this category before the award ceremony.
“We are also extremely pleased to have finalised in the top three best drink producers in the 2016 Kent Life and Kent on Sunday Food and Drink awards, especially as this is the first year we have been nominated! On behalf of the whole Biddenden team, we would like to thank all readers who voted for us and congratulate all the other winners and finalists.
“From our estate bottled wines like Ortega, to our Strong Kentish Ciders, and our new products such as the Red Love apple juice, we are incredibly passionate about all the drinks we produce at the vineyard. We work hard to ensure all our products are crafted with Kent in mind and keep all aspects of the business as local as possible from the grape picking which is still done by hand by a team of local workers, to our apples which are sourced within a 15mile radius and even our distribution is still done independently.”