Winning a Great Taste gold star is no easy task. Of the 9738 products entered, only 33.8% were awarded a star.
The Great Taste Awards, organised by the Guild of Fine Food, is the acknowledged benchmark for speciality food and drink. It has been described as the ‘Oscars’ of the food world and the ‘epicurean equivalent of the Booker prize’. Quite simply the Great Taste logo is the sign you can trust when buying food and drink in your local, quality retailer.
405 judges, including 38 food writers, input judges’ comments over 50 judging days, from May through to the last week in July, including a week in Ireland, three days at the Royal Garden Hotel in London, specialist test centres for tea, filter coffee, espresso and olive oil with the remainder done at Guild HQ in Dorset.
Winning is important to the producers as it differentiates their products from the norm and means you, as the customer, have a guarantee that the products have a reliable seal of approval based upon great taste and not marketing.
10,000 products were submitted this year with only 125 foods achieving the three gold stars. Last year, no coffees were awarded three gold stars.
So, we are delighted and proud to announce that Saint Helena coffee, roasted by Sea Island Coffee, received two gold stars.
The Judges made the following notes about St Helena coffee:
High Cherry fruit note. Not overly acidic. Really interesting bean, neat and tidy. Lacking a little acidity, however it's a darker heavier coffee but without the aggressive bitterness. Good cocoa note to this.
St Helena is a tiny sub-tropical island paradise lying on latitude 16 between Angola & Brazil in the Atlantic in the path of the South East Trade Winds. Originally a Portuguese possession, it has been a British colony since the 17th Century and is one of the most isolated British overseas territories, still only accessible by sea. The island's most famous enforced denizen was Emperor Napoleon who was exiled there from 1815 until his death in 1821.
Coffee was introduced to St Helena in 1733 by its then owner, The East India Company, and is an Arabica bean of the Green Tipped Bourbon variety. The Island constitutes one of the purest environments in the world with the local guano-derived natural fertiliser being applied only sparingly in the coffee cultivation in the rich volcanic soils. The coffee is processed using pure spring water descending from the Island's Central Ridge peaks. This yields a cup of elegance and subtlety characterised by good body combined with a superb fragrant bouquet.