East Berkshire and South Bucks firms pick up 'Great Taste' awards

East Berkshire and South Bucks firms pick up 'Great Taste' awards

The Handmade Cake Company, based in Gardner Road, Maidenhead, was recognised again at the Great Taste Awards 2022

Food firms from across East Berkshire and South Bucks have been recognised at the coveted Great Taste Awards 2022.

The accolades see more than 500 culinary experts hand out their seals of approval with respected stars - from one to three - enabling the product to sport the well-known black and gold logo.

Firms from across the country took part, and the 2022 results were announced on Monday this week.

Bray-based cured meat company Bray Cured, in Windsor Road, was only founded last year but saw five of its products receive awards.

It makes British charcuterie using local ingredients and was five months into trading when it entered Great Taste.

Bray Cured received two stars for its hogget bresaola, a twist on the traditional beef bresaola, made with hogget from Marlow.

It also received one star for its cacao venison bresaola; venison salami; Berkshire salami and Berkshire Pestle.

Founder of Bray Cured, Alex Mugan said: "We were five months in when we entered Great Taste, but customers had said nice things about the product, so we thought we would give it a go.

"We're aiming to create charcuterie that has a real local feel, so the wine we use is made 10 minutes away at Stanlake Park, the cheese in the Berkshire salami is from near Reading and the meat in the Hogget Bresaola and Venison Bresaola is from our friends and partners at Chiltern Lamb and Chiltern Venison.

"Hopefully, with a full year to get ready, we'll be able to kick on next year.

"For now though, the best thing about the awards is that there was recognition for each of our collaborations with local meat, cheese and wine producers.

"We're in an amazing area for food produce, and we're delighted to be bringing some of that together to create charcuterie that tastes of this place."

Maidenhead was represented on the list by two firms. The Handmade Cake Company, based in Gardner Road, received one star each for its gluten-free chocolate brownie and cherry Genoa cakes.

It has been making wholesale cakes and traybakes, by hand, for coffee shops and cafés, for more than 30 years. 

Meanwhile, Epic Brownies, in Blackamoor Lane, came away with one star for its cherry and amaretto brownies.

Founder Pam Hilling explained on social media about her inspiration for starting the business.

"I cannot express to you just how much this means to me," she wrote on Facebook. 

"I started this business after being diagnosed with some pretty serious heart conditions. I didn’t want to just sit at home but it was proving impossible to hold down a 9-to-5 job.

"My friends and family rallied around me and pushed me to start this business and I’m so grateful to them that I did.

"It’s the best thing that I’ve ever done. My late younger sister even named the business after eating my brownies and saying, “Pam these are Epic”.

"We lost her a year ago at only 28 years old. She is still with me, always guiding me forward and bringing happiness back into my life.

"I’m not trying to pull out a sob story here, I’m just trying to highlight the journey that Epic Brownies has made and to also remind you that if you’re feeling at all lost, there is always hope."

Copas Traditional Turkeys, from Cookham, won a star for its Copas clear orchard honey.

In Eton Wick, dried meat company Biltong Boss, based at Manor Farm, picked up awards for four of its products: its volcano boss biltong; traditional boss biltong; chilli beef biltong and sweet chilli/sweet hot beef jerky. 

Crisp producer Tyrells, which has a base in Albert Street in Slough, won a star for its mature cheddar and chive flavour snacks. 

Over in Bucks, Haynes Gourmet, based in Raymans Lane, Marlow, picked up one star for its candied jalepenos.

To view a full list of winners, visit www.greattasteawards.co.uk/results 

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