New Zealand’s most talented artisan food producers have been honoured in the Cuisine Artisan Awards 2016, with delicious and innovative products ranging from frankfurters to ice cream among the winners. 

The eighth annual Cuisine Artisan Awards, proudly supported by L’affare, attracted a large number of entries, with the judging panel of food experts selecting 10 winning products. The artisan producers who made the cut this year come from Ohaeawai in the far North to Wanaka in the South.

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Wellington Chocolate Factory (WCF) was named Supreme Winner for its Great War Bar, a coconutty, Anzac-biscuity treat made to commemorate the centenary of World War I and raise funds for Wellington’s Great War Exhibition.

Cuisine Artisan Awards 2016 WCF Great War Choc

In researching how war and chocolate might be connected, WCF investigated the ingredients of the D ration bar – the United States’ standard military ration during World War II. The fact this bar was made with oat flour prompted the company to include oats in its new creation, which was combined with coconut in a nod to the World War I-inspired Anzac biscuit. 

It’s the second Cuisine Artisan Award for Wellington Chocolate Factory, which was runner-up in the 2015 awards for its delicious Salted Brittle Caramel. The WCF was founded just over two years ago and in that time has impressed not only with its seriously delicious chocolate, but also its commitment to ethical and sustainable practices.

Wanaka-based The People’s Bread was named runner-up for its Multigrain Sourdough, made from locally sourced, organic grains including rye, several kinds of blonde wheat, brown rice and konini. The judges loved that owners Ruth and Jeremy source the organic grains locally, grind their own flour and even deliver the loaves on an electric bicycle. 

The People's Bread Multigrain Sourdough

Also from Wanaka, Pembroke Patisserie made the winners’ list with its thin, crisp Gingerbread Biscuits which have a lovely warm ginger flavour.

Northland’s Ludbrook House continued its winning ways, adding a third Cuisine Artisan Award to their cabinet for its Merlot Grape Jelly.

The Auckland region had two winners, Bonnie Goods’ Canterbury Linseed Oatcakes and Alderson’s Kawa Kawa Salsa Verde.

Cuisine Artisan Awards 2016 Aldersons Salsa Verde

Duck Island’s Roasted White Chocolate and Miso Ice Cream, made in Hamilton, and Frankfurters from Frank’s Sausages in Te Aroha, are proudly flying the flag for the Waikato district.

Frank's Sausages Frankfurters

Just north of Wellington, Kapiti Artisan Bakehouse has won its second Cuisine Artisan Award with the spicy Ghost Chilli Ciabatta, a collaboration with another previous winner, Culley’s hot sauces.

The Canterbury region is represented by WabiO’s The Headless Kombucha, a thoroughly unique fermented tea drink.

Cuisine’s new editor, Kelli Brett says “Now more than ever people are wanting to know the stories behind the food that they eat and drink. The Cuisine Artisan Awards give us the opportunity to support and highlight these skilled producers, each and every one of them so passionate about their final product. Innovation and dedication are essential ingredients in the evolving food culture of New Zealand. It is inspiring and exciting to see and taste the diversity of entries received from across the country.”

Cuisine Artisan Awards head judge Fiona Smith says deciding the winners is always a tough task. There were more than 60 entries this year, including some new and interesting flavour combinations that challenged and delighted the judges’ taste buds. 

“We’ve had some incredibly interesting entries, with the most surprising being Duck Island’s Roasted White Chocolate and Miso Ice Cream. I wasn’t sure what I’d think but as soon as I had my first spoonful, I couldn’t stop. It’s absolutely delicious.”

Find profiles of the winners in the March 2016 issue of Cuisine, on sale 15 February. Taste Cuisine‘s winning products at the Farro Fresh Market Day at Constellation Drive on Auckland’s North Shore on Saturday 20 February from 11am to 2pm. Farro Fresh stocks all the winning products and is pleased to support these awards as a silver sponsor. 

Or join the Cuisine team at Auckland’s EURO on Wednesday 9 March from 6pm where renowned chef Gareth Stewart will serve a stunning six-course menu featuring all of the 2016 winning products matched to prestige wines from Marisco Vineyard’s Kings Series. Marisco are also a silver sponsor of the Cuisine Artisan Awards.

Cuisine Artisan Awards – 2016 Winners

·         Supreme Winner:  Wellington Chocolate Factory Great War Bar (Wellington), RRP $13.50
·         Supreme Runner-Up: The People’s Bread Multigrain Sourdough (Wanaka) RRP $13
·         Pembroke Patisserie Gingerbread Biscuits (Wanaka)  RRP $8.50
·         Duck Island Roasted White Chocolate and Miso Ice Cream (Waikato)  RRP $13
·         WabiO  The Headless Kombucha (Christchurch) RRP $5.50
·         Bonnie Canterbury Linseed Oatcakes (Auckland), RRP $8
·         Kapiti Artisan Bakehouse Ghost Chilli Ciabatta (Kapiti Coast) RRP $5.49
·         Alderson’s Kawa Kawa Salsa Verde (Auckland)  RRP $8
·         Ludbrook House Merlot Grape Jelly (Northland) RRP $9

·         Frank’s Sausages Frankfurters (Waikato) RRP $8.99

For further information visit cuisine.co.nz

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