The Norfolk Food and Drink Awards 2024 are in full swing for entries, and they are piling in.

This is a fantastic opportunity for the very best of Norfolk food and drink to be recognised in one of 12 categories.

There are 11 categories open for entries: Best Coffee Shop/Café, Best Newcomer, Best Norfolk Producer, Chef of the Year, Field to Fork, Food/Drink Experience, Food and Drink Retailer, Front of House Experience, Pub/Bar of the Year, Restaurant of the Year and Street Food Vendor, plus the non-entry Outstanding Achievement Award, the recipient of which will be chosen by our panel of expert judges.

Readers and businesses have until midnight on June 9 to enter or nominate at Once judging is complete, four finalists in each category will be announced on August 23, followed by the main awards event on September 16 at Caistor Hall.

Of course, none of this would be possible without the support of our category sponsors, as well as event beer supplier Woodfordes and event drinks supplier Makro Booker.

Here we hear from our category sponsors about why it’s so important to support our amazing food and drink sector:

Sponsor of Restaurant of the Year

“Ever since opening Benedicts, we have highly admired the Norfolk Food and Drink Awards,” said Richard Bainbridge, chef restaurateur.

“Having been the proud recipients of awards in various categories over the years, it is fitting for us to contribute to the judging and profile of this amazing organisation.

“It is incredible to have a hand in highlighting some of the best restaurants in our county and something that I am extremely passionate about.”

Caistor Hall
Sponsor of Front of House Experience

“We support the Front of House Experience award category because we understand the pivotal role front-of-house staff play in shaping the dining experience,” said Sian de Waal, hotel manager and director.

“Their warm hospitality, attention to detail and dedication to guest satisfaction elevate every meal into a memorable occasion.

“Recognising and celebrating these individuals is not only a tribute to their hard work but also an acknowledgement of their invaluable contribution to the hospitality industry.”

Castlemeadow Care
Sponsor of Food/Drink Experience

“This category is often overlooked, but who remembers a good meal if they have had a bad experience?” said Sanda Stott, regional support manager.

“The residents within our care often reminisce about places where they have been ‘fed and watered’ within the beautiful Norfolk landscape, and they enjoy nothing more than sharing their lovely experiences with their friends and carers.

“Castlemeadow’s ethos is ‘Creating Special Moments’, and as such this resonates with us as the overall dining and drinking experiences are also about creating special moments that can always be remembered and shared.”

Eastern Daily Press: Hotel School at City College Norwich is sponsoring the Field to Fork awardHotel School at City College Norwich is sponsoring the Field to Fork award (Image: Newsquest)

Hotel School at City College Norwich
Sponsor of Field to Fork

“We are incredibly proud to be sponsoring the Field to Fork category,” said Joe Mulhall, head of hospitality, catering, tourism, hair and beauty.

“Understanding the importance of using fresh, locally sourced produce is a key theme throughout our students’ learning.

“With so many incredible farmers, producers and brewers in Norfolk, there is no shortage of possibilities for putting this learning into practice and creating amazing dishes in the process.”

Sponsor of Best Norfolk Producer 

“Jarrolds knows the variety and ingenuity on offer from Norfolk and seeks to champion this amazing produce,” said Judith Finney, Food Hall buyer.

 “The local food space holds a special place in Jarrolds’ heart with brands including Norfolk Brew, Crush Oils, Harris & James Chocolates and local spirit producers including Norfolk Gin, Black Shuck and St Giles Gin.

“The Food Hall buyers have a passion for local and artisan food, seeking to find the best, the unique and the surprising. 

“We are supporting Best Norfolk Producer as the variety of what’s on offer continually astounds us while we love nothing more than celebrating everything delicious.” 

Eastern Daily Press: Jarrolds is sponsoring the Best Norfolk Producer awardJarrolds is sponsoring the Best Norfolk Producer award (Image: Newsquest)

Motorvogue DS Store Norwich 
Sponsor of Chef of the Year 

“Much like a meticulously crafted dish, DS vehicles are known for their attention to detail, precision engineering and aesthetic appeal,” said Amie Russell, group marketing manager. 

“Just as a chef carefully selects and combines ingredients to create a memorable dining experience, DS designers meticulously craft each element of their vehicles to evoke a sense of luxury and sophistication.

“This award celebrates the dedication and innovation of Norfolk’s best chefs in recognition of their achievements for excellence.”

Newman Refrigeration
Sponsor of Food and Drink Retailer  

“We are incredibly proud to be sponsoring the Food and Drink Retailer category,” said Rob Newman, operations director. 

“There are many great food and drink retailers across Norfolk, and we are committed to recognising the businesses that work so hard to offer their customers such an incredible range of products to choose from, including their very own produce, and stocking locally sourced products from other amazing Norfolk brands, celebrating the variety we have available.” 

Eastern Daily Press: The Gin Trap Inn is sponsoring the Pub/Bar of the Year award The Gin Trap Inn is sponsoring the Pub/Bar of the Year award (Image: The Gin Trap Inn)

The Gin Trap Inn 
Sponsor of Pub/Bar of the Year 

“Dining out in Norfolk has never been better,” said David Lamyman, director. “Norfolk now has four Michelin-starred restaurants. We are among seven restaurants that have three AA Rosettes and one has four Rosettes. It’s a really exciting time to be involved in this industry in Norfolk.

“British pubs are admired the world over, helping to pull in millions of international visitors. With many pubs closing each week, I want to celebrate the hard work and skills that publicans exhibit in running their successful hostelries.”

To enter the awards, or for more information, please visit