The Judging Panel
Chair of Judges
“After an enforced gap of two years, it is an absolute honour to be Chair of the judging panel for the Flavours of Herriot Country Awards once again. Each year these awards gone from strength to strength and Herriot Country truly represent the very best of the food, drink, produce and service that Richmondshire and Hambleton has to offer, this year though we have more to celebrate than ever, amazing examples of diversity and flexible business models and indeed survival. We are so fortunate to live and work in an area rich and diverse in its culinary offerings and the Flavours of Herriot Country capture this. Thanks must go to all of the farmers, producers, makers and businesses that enter these awards, and to the very professional and committed judges who support them”.
Here are a selection of our industry experts who will be judging the 12 categories this year…
Middlesbrough College will be hosting and judging the Young Professional Chef or Catering Student of the year category, with Molly Shaher, Catering and Hospitality course leader/ Chair of PACE (Professional Association of Catering Education), and Frances Atkins, of the renowned Yorke Arms, one of the very few Michelin Starred chefs in the UK, and Jonathan Harrison, Roux Scholarship winner and chef/patron of award winning The Sandpiper, in Leyburn, North Yorkshire.
Simon Jenkins began a temporary stint writing the Yorkshire Evening Post pub column in 1992, while a colleague was on annual leave. 25 years on, Simon’s articles remain a weekly feature in the paper, and include reviews of local pubs, favourite beers and occasional jaunts to Yorkshire’s best breweries. He has written two editions of The Great Leeds Pub Crawl, his homage to the city’s drinking scene, and his new book The Yorkshire Beer Bible will be published in the summer of 2017. He has won a number of awards, including being named British Beer Writer of the Year in 2010.
Local chef Stephanie is a Yorkshire farmers daughter and has travelled the world with her job over the years.
Steph has a five star hotel background and now She runs her own consultancy business, All Things Food, which proudly is in its eleventh year.
Working with businesses large and small to help realise their potential in all areas of food.
In October 2021 Steph headed up the Guild of Fine foods -Great taste “Golden fork” canape banquet at the Yorkshire event centre in Harrogate.
Stephanie has worked at The Dorchester working for world famous chef Anton Mosimann. During that time she cooked for the Royal State banquet attended by the Queen. Steph has also worked in St Moritz, Munich, Sydney, Hayman Island and Chicago but is delighted to be living back home where she loves spending time with her family exploring Yorkshire in her converted Sprinter camper van.
In 2000 she worked at Rudding Park Executive Chef, for many years .
Stephanie is a recognised figure on the Yorkshire food scene and has many accolades to her credit, such as appearances on BBC2’s Great British Menu and BBC1’s Chefs Put Your Menu Where Your Mouth Is. Steph has also been a professional’s guest on BBC radio Leeds breakfast show many times.
She is a regular MC or Chef demonstrator at various food festivals and shows including The Great Yorkshire Show.
These days Steph enjoys helping support Young Chefs coming into the industry and encouraging the next generation of years into this great career.
She is a passionate ambassador for Yorkshire produce and has been a Deliciouslyorkshire champion twice.
Chris Wildman – a farmer and 5th generation butcher. Owner of Town End Farm Shop, Malham, and creator of the award winning Paganum Choorizo, cured in the Yorkshire Dales from his own pigs.
There is also an online shop for farm meat and charcuterie.
Etta Cohen OBE
Etta Cohen OBE has for over 20 years been an active networker building up contacts throughout the U.K and abroad at all levels.
Etta started her career as a teacher in inner city Leeds. She then went to work in the public sector.
Etta set up and previously ran Forward Ladies, one of the UK’s leading business support organisations for women. She was involved in consultation with government, organising trade missions, training, a speaker programme and Women in Business Awards.
Since leaving Forward Ladies Etta has set up www.afternoontea4u.com a website dedicated to promoting Afternoon Tea. She spends her time enjoying, reviewing and advising on Afternoon Tea.
She also mentors several women and is a public speaker.
Etta has two grown up married children and is Chair of the Development Board for Breast Cancer Haven in Leeds. She is a judge for several business awards both in the U.K. and US.
In 2016 Etta was awarded an OBE for services to women in business and entrepreneurship.
Dave & Charlotte Reilly
Robert Ramsden, Specialist Food Development, Delifresh
I’m always on the hunt for new and exciting food ingredients for the catering trade for Delifresh, who service the catering trade throughout the UK with a vast array of specialist and exciting ingredients. Working closely with local growers and artisanal producers of all things food related, my job also involves hands on support in the customer’s establishments. I also enjoy the many cookery demonstrations that I do at many of the main events in the region. Previously Head Chef at The General Tarleton and chef at Harvey Nichols.
I’ve run cookery classes for 40 years, sat on Defra, Food Standards Agency and Meat and Livestock Commission committees, Chaired The Guild of Food Writers, presented a 10 part BBC TV series on Welsh food and published over a dozen books. Apart from that my children say that my toad in the hole is quite good.
I started my career with Roux scholarship winner Jonathan Harrison, The Sandpiper, Leyburn, before taking an internship at the 3 Michelin starred Fat Duck. I then moved to Yorebridge House Hotel, in Bainbridge, North Yorkshire, where I was sous chef. We won 3 rosettes, and restaurant of the year awards.
I moved to the Black Swan, Olstead, where we won 4 rosettes and were voted best restaurant in the world. I then spent some time in Oslo at the 3 Michelin starred Maaemo.
After that I took over as head chef at Roots restaurant, York, where we won a Michelin star, and was voted one of the top restaurants in the UK.
I won the Staff Canteen award for the ‘One To Watch’, and won an Acorn award from Caterer magazine for being one of 30 people being recognised as the industry’s most talented stars. We are hoping to open our first restaurant next year. Darlington College, which is where I studied catering, named their refurbished kitchen in my honour.
The Sandpiper Inn, Leyburn
FLAVOURS OF HERRIOT COUNTRY AWARDS 2022
CHAIR OF BOARD
Irene Myers, Irene Myers & Associates.
Emma Hudson, Business & Economy Tourism Advisor, Hambleton District Council.
Ian Ashton, Managing Director, World of James Herriot Ltd.
Neil Jones, Technical Director, World of James Herriot Ltd.
Cllr Carl Les, Leader, North Yorkshire Country Council.
Debra Thornton, Business & Operations Director
Malcolm Warne, Communications Officer, the office of Rishi Sunak MP.