Great Taste, the world’s most coveted food awards, which celebrates the very best in food and drink, has announced the Great Taste stars of 2017. Out of over 12,300 products to be judged, Newcastle-based tea and coffee expert Ringtons was awarded five sought-after accolades, with four of its tea blends receiving awards.

Ringtons Breakfast Tea Bags won a 2-star ‘outstanding’ award with judges describing the blend as ‘Bright as a button. A solid blend and a quality tea.’  While Ringtons Traditional Cuppas scooped a 2-star award with judges stating ‘It’s a really nice tea, flavoursome, bright and brisk.’  Ringtons Traditional For Your Mug and Ringtons Northumbrian Gold Blend Loose Tea also achieved 1-star rating, as did Ringtons famous Ginger Snap biscuits.

Judged by over 500 of the most demanding palates, belonging to food critics, chefs, cooks, restaurateurs and producers, as well as a whole host of food writers and journalists, Great Taste is widely acknowledged as the most respected food accreditation scheme for artisan and speciality food producers. As well as a badge of honour, the unmistakeable black and gold Great Taste label is a signpost to a wonderful tasting product, which has been discovered through hours and hours of blind-tasting by hundreds of judges.

Jon Malton, Ringtons divisional director said: “The Great Taste Awards are one of the country’s most respected food and drink awards and we are thrilled to be recognised again, taking our Great Taste Award total rise to 18 accolades.  Our three most popular tea bag blends have now been awarded Great Taste awards – our very best tea, Ringtons Gold has the highest accolade of 3-stars, while our Breakfast Tea Bags and longest standing Traditional Tea Bags also hold coveted 2-star awards.  We are honoured to see our commitment to quality and freshness has been noted again by the Great Taste Awards.  For 110 years, Ringtons has sourced and bought the finest tea in the world, and our unique Leaf Lock process ensures our customers receive the freshest tea possible.  We are also delighted that our Ginger Snap biscuits have retained a one-star award in a hugely competitive category where only three ginger biscuits achieved awards this year – it’s clear to see why they are our most popular biscuit.”

Recognised as a stamp of excellence among consumers and retailers alike, Great Taste values taste above all else, with no regard for branding and packaging. Whether it is gin, biscuits, sausages or coffee being judged, all products are removed from their wrapper, jar, box or bottle before being tasted. The judges then savour, confer and re-taste to decide which products are worthy of a 1-, 2- or 3-star award.

There were 12,366 Great Taste entries this year and of those products, 165 have been awarded a 3-star, 1,011 received a 2-star and 3,171 were awarded a 1-star accolade. The panel of judges included; chef, food writer and author, Gill Meller, MasterChef judge and restaurant critic, Charles Campion, author and chef, Zoe Adjonyoh, baker, Tom Herbert, and food writer and baking columnist Martha Collison as well as food buyers from Fortnum & Mason, Selfridges, and Harvey Nichols. These esteemed palates have together tasted and re-judged the 3-star winners to finally agree on the 2017 Top 50 Foods, the Golden Fork Trophy winners and the 2017 Supreme Champion.

Great Taste 2017 will reach its exciting finale on Monday 4 September, when the world of fine food gathers at the Intercontinental Park Lane Hotel, London to find out the Golden Fork winners for each region at an Awards Dinner, with the final applause reserved for the Great Taste Supreme Champion 2017.

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