Heavenly Hedgerows’ Lavender Jelly Wins The Great Taste ‘3 Star’ Award!!

Lavender Jelly Award WinnerKeynsham-based foraged-food producer HEAVENLY HEDGEROWS is thrilled to have been awarded the highest 3-star accolade and top accreditation for its Lavender Jelly, in the prestigious GREAT TASTE AWARDS 2013.

Of nearly 10,000 entries this year, just 125 – including Heavenly Hedgerows’ Lavender Jelly – are 3-star winners.

The GREAT TASTE AWARDS is the world’s largest and most rigorous food award scheme and Britain’s most trusted and recognized good food competition. The acknowledged benchmark for specialty food and drink, it is sometimes described as the 'Oscars of the food world’ or ‘the Epicurean equivalent of the Booker prize.'

The food award scheme involves over 400 diverse blind-tasting experts, appointed by the Guild of Fine Food.

Judges are presented with, for example, a piece of cheese, a pie or a little dish of chutney, with no wrappings, jars or marks – and they taste, confer and re-taste before making the decision on whether a product should be a 1-, 2- or 3-star winner. In total more than 12 judges will have tasted and commented on each product.

Heavenly Hedgerows Wild Plum Jam and Hawthorn Jelly received 1 star awards to boot.

Great Taste is not simply about taste, not clever branding or smart packaging.

Heavenly Hedgerows, which produces gourmet jellies, jams and liqueurs from hand-picked local wild plants and berries, has a passionate proprietor in Chris Westgate.

Her venture started as a hobby borne from an outdoorsy New Zealand childhood, in which her mum would take Chris and her sisters foraging for breakfast mushrooms and edible flowers.

After five years creating preserves and liqueurs for appreciative friends and family, she set up at a farmer’s market stall - to rave reviews. Chris, who waited for her three children to start school before developing her brand, has now successfully combined her love of food, foraging and family to create a thriving business.

‘Heavenly Hedgerows’ seemed the obvious name for her burgeoning company, as she says the berries Bristol’s local hedgerows produce are “just divine!”

Its lavender jelly, which accompanies roast meats and adventurous toast, is a popular perennial for the kitchen-top company. The award-winning latest version – which judges commended as ‘Appealing colour, clear jelly, subtle and delicate aroma, and a full, rounded flavour’ - was refined to the highest level partly as a result of last year’s lack of quality seasonal fruit.

“Because of the bad weather, much wild fruit had a poor harvest last year. So I decided to concentrate on flower jellies, and spent much time ‘perfecting’ their nuance and depth of flavour. In retrospect, this was the best decision I could have made!”

Picking wild food for commercial purposes is illegal without a landowner’s permission, but Heavenly is fortunate to had the green light to pick from three local farms - with an acreage totaling nearly 2,000. It rarely picks from the same spot and is careful to leave plenty for birds and re-seeding.

“Wild food is an interest bordering on obsession, so we are absolutely delighted to have received recognition at the highest level” says Westgate, “but the best thing about Heavenly Hedgerows – apart from my pride in the products themselves - is that the whole family has developed a shared passion for its ethos: hand-picked, seasonal and wild produce.”

Heavenly Hedgerows locally handpicks its key ingredients. As a result of this labour-intensive and environmentally-friendly approach, the company supplies selected farm shops and delis across Bristol & Bath.

@heavenlyhedgero

Great Taste Awards Press Enquiries:

Joanne Myram: joanne@positivepr.co.uk (T) 01935 389497