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Taste of Kent Awards announces 2023 food and drink product finalists

Following a successful judging day held at Jestic Foodservice Solution’s test kitchen in Paddock Wood, The Taste of Kent Awards (TOKA) has shortlisted 51 outstanding food and drink products from across Kent as finalists for the 2023 awards.

Products which made the list came from across the entire county including delicious seafood from Whitstable, wine from Canterbury, dairy from Benenden, and cheese from Faversham to name a few.

Nigel Barden, national food and drink broadcaster and this year’s lead judge, headed up a stellar judging panel of more than 20 judges, which included renowned chefs and food writers. Nigel comments. “Kent’s a remarkable county, 1500 square miles chock full of great products, producers and farmers. We assembled a fantastic judging panel of food and drink journalists, chefs, buyers, and producers. I always like to taste blind; I don’t want to be too skewed by the packaging, good to see that of course, but afterwards. Really it’s all about taste and we weren’t disappointed!”

Floortje Hoette from Produced in Kent who run the awards adds “Judging the food and drink product categories has never been harder. The standards were higher than ever before, and it was fantastic to watch so many food and drink professionals get excited about produce from our great county.”

All finalists will be listed in the Taste of Kent Buyers Guide and invited to attend an evening awards ceremony taking place this year at the University of Kent on the 15th of June. For the first time, the awards ceremony is being paired with a brand new Taste of Kent Food and Drink Festival. The festival will be open to the public and trade, and attendees will have the opportunity to sample and buy the delicious food and drink products which have been shortlisted.

The Taste of Kent Awards (TOKA) is now in its 18th year and celebrates the tastiest food and drink of Kent. The awards shine a spotlight on the regions excellence in producing fine quality British produce.

The awards are made possible because of the generous support of TOKA’s sponsors. Southeastern, The University of Kent, Kent County Council, Brachers, Canterbury BID, Crowe UK, EKC Group, Jestic Foodservice Solutions, NFU Mutual Ashford Tenterden & Whitfield, Oxbury, Primed, Port of Dover, Shepherd Neame,  the University of Greenwich, Social Enterprise Kent, Southern Co-op and Visit Kent.

For more information

The full list of Taste of Kent Awards 2023 food and drink product finalists.

Non-alcoholic cold drink

  • Beardy B’s Lemonade. Beardy B’s Original Lemonade, Faversham.
  • Spiced Apple Juice. Chegworth Valley Limited, Harrietsham, Maidstone.
  • Zak’s Kombucha – Ginger & Turmeric + Black Pepper. Zak’s Kombucha, Hastingleigh, Ashford.

Non-alcoholic hot drink

  • Maypole Blend. Garage Coffee Roasters, Canterbury.
  • Mont58 Ethiopian Coffee. Mont58 Coffee, Ashford.
  • THAT ONE. We Are Here, Margate.


  • Gusbourne English Rosé 2022. Gusbourne Estate, Appledore, Ashford.
  • Woodchurch Classic Brut 2017. Woodchurch Wine Estate, Woodchurch, Ashford.
  • Woolton Bacchus 2019. Woolton Farm, Bekesbourne, Canterbury.


  • Biddenden Ice Cider 2021. Biddenden Vineyards, Biddenden, Ashford.
  • Curious Apple, Curious Brewery Ltd, Ashford.
  • Dudda’s Tun Greenhorn. Dudda’s Tun, Doddington, Sittingbourne.


  • Bishops Finger. Shepherd Neame, Faversham.
  • Pig and Porter Ltd, Tunbridge Wells.
  • GADDS’ No.5 Kentish Best Bitter. Ramsgate Brewery Ltd, Broadstairs.


  • Anno Owler Dark Spiced Rum. Anno Distillers, Marden Tonbridge.
  • Foundry Streetlight Single Malt Whiskey. Canterbury Brewers and Distillers @The Foundry Brew Pub, Canterbury.
  • Greensand Ridge Plum Brandy. Greensand Ridge Distillery, Tonbridge.
  • Sharp’s Toffee Liqueur. The Maidstone Distillery, Maidstone.

Sweet Bakery

  • Apple Crumble Slice with Salted Caramel Drizzle. Bohemian Treats, Chatham Medway.
  • Spiced Apple Cruffin with Miso Caramel and Candied Walnut. Docker Bakery, Hythe.
  • The Captain’s Cookies: Apple & Hazelnut. The Zingiberi Bakery, Herne Bay.

Sweet Pantry.

  • Gourmet Granola. Pebble Beach Bakery, New Romney.
  • Raspberry, Vanilla & Rose Geranium Jam. Karly’s Kitchen, Ramsgate
  • The Wooden Spoon Preserving Company, Ashford.


  • Chocolate That Feels Good. Ethical Workshop, Canterbury.
  • Collection box. The Chocolate Pig, Birchington.
  • Fudge with Biscoff. Chloe’s Fudgey Fancies, Margate

Savoury Bakery

  • Gilda Sourdough Olive Focaccia. Gilda Bakery Ltd, Canterbury.
  • Gilda Country Sourdough. Gilda Bakery Ltd, Canterbury.
  • Kentish Knocker Pasties. The Town Kitchen, Deal.


  • Chaucers Soft Cheese. Cheesemakers of Canterbury, Faversham.
  • Kentish Blue Cheese. Kingcott Dairy, Tonbridge.
  • Kingcott Blue Cheese. Kingcott Dairy, Tonbridge.

Savoury Pantry

  • Eve’s Temptation’ – Apple and Fig Chutney. The Wooden Spoon Preserving Company, Ashford.
  • Karimix Tomato Chutney. Karimix UK Ltd, Faversham.
  • The Red One – Vegan Friendly Kimchi. Bottlebrush Ferments, Ramsgate.

Ready to Cook

  • Apple & Biscoff Crumble. Crmbl, Tonbridge. Kent Bramley
  • Chicken & Mushroom Pie. Yes Chef Boxes,
  • Onion Bhaji Burger. The Indian Dish, West Malling.

Fresh Fish or Seafood

  • Tankerton Smokeshed Smoked Salmon, Tankerton Smokeshed, Whitstable.
  • Tankerton Smokeshed Smoked Trout. Tankerton Smokeshed, Whitstable.
  • Whitstable Rock Oysters, Whitstable Oyster Trading Company, Whitstable.


  • Hinxden Farm Dairy Channel Island Double Cream. Hinxden Farm Dairy, Benenden.
  • Honeycomb Ice Cream. Simply Ice Creams Ltd, Ashford.
  • Kent Cowslip Butter. Cheesemakers of Canterbury, Faversham

Prepared or Cured Meat

  • Peppers Sausages. Macknade, Faversham.
  • Kent Honey Baked Ham, Stephen’s Fresh Foods, Chatham.
  • Whole Traditional Biltong with Fat. North Downs Real Food Co Ltd, Maidstone.

Fresh Meat or Poultry

  • Pork Chop. Oink and Udder, Canterbury.
  • Rib of Beef. Paley farm, Cranbrook.


  • Company Name: Taste of Kent Awards
  • Contact Name: Floortje Hoette
  • Contact Email:
  • Contact Number: 01293 854402
  • Website Address:

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