Cream of the crop honoured at Sage

Tasty bunch ' Winners and runners-up at Thursday's Food and Drink Awards. Front row, from left: Steve Kerwood (for Elaine Ayres), Manzur Hasam, Nigel Burch (for Dun Cow), Karl Sergison, Joan Mitchell and Trisha Stafford; back: Matthew Curtis, Charlotte Turner, Carol Perkins, Tanya Lewis, Spalding Guardian editor Jeremy Ransome, Donna Gower, Ellie Green, Joel Green, Christine Hanson, Abu Rasel and Rachel Murray.
Tasty bunch ' Winners and runners-up at Thursday's Food and Drink Awards. Front row, from left: Steve Kerwood (for Elaine Ayres), Manzur Hasam, Nigel Burch (for Dun Cow), Karl Sergison, Joan Mitchell and Trisha Stafford; back: Matthew Curtis, Charlotte Turner, Carol Perkins, Tanya Lewis, Spalding Guardian editor Jeremy Ransome, Donna Gower, Ellie Green, Joel Green, Christine Hanson, Abu Rasel and Rachel Murray.

THE district’s top food and drink businesses were honoured at the inaugural South Holland Food and Drink Awards on Thursday night.

The Spalding Guardian teamed up with the Red Lion Quarter in Spalding to run the awards, which culminated in a meal and presentation evening at the Sage Restaurant.

In the three categories voted for by Guardian readers, Ye Olde Dun Cow in Cowbit won best pub, Indus in Winsover Road best restaurant and Trio’s, also of Winsover Road, best cafe.

Saints and Sinners was chosen by the Red Lion Quarter as the best food business and Karl Sergison, of Sergi’s deli in Francis Street, was chosen as local food hero by a special judging panel.

Guests enjoyed a champagne reception at the impressive Red Lion Quarter atrium before enjoying a lovely meal cooked and served by students from Boston College.

Guest speaker Mr Sergison, well-known for his starring role in 2009’s TV documentary Turn Back Time – The High Street, talked about the challenging times ahead for South Holland food and drink businesses before South Holland District Council deputy leader Nick Worth announced the winners, who received their awards from Spalding Guardian editor Jeremy Ransome.

The winners all received a trophy and Jason Atherton cookery book.

Runners-up, who received a certficate, were: best pub – Ivy Wall and Duke of York; best restaurant – Golden Lion and Blue Bell; best cafe – Penningtons and Bookmark.

Unable to attend on the night were Dick and Fiona Morgan, of Ye Olde Dun Cow, whose award was collected by council officer Nigel Burch, and Elaine Ayre, of Saints and Sinners, whose award was collected by Red Lion Quarter operations manager Steve Kerwood.