For the past seven years, the Young British Foodie Awards has celebrated the best new talent in UK food and drink. As one of the only independent awards ceremonies of its kind, it champions the community dairy farms, ice cream sandwich makers, food Instagrammers, and vegetable farmers progressing British food in exciting and often unusual ways.
It’s fitting, then, that the 2018 YBFs would be a year of firsts. A kombucha company triumphed in the Alcohol category, a social enterprise coffee roastery won the inaugural Giving Back prize, and Roberta Hall became the first female Scottish chef to be crowned chef of the year. You can read the full list of winners here.
As the British food and drink scene evolves, so too does the YBFs—and with delicious consequences. This year’s ceremony took over two floors of 180 The Strand in Central London, with winners announced by judges including Yotam Ottolenghi, Jackson Boxer, and MUNCHIES' Phoebe Hurst—judge of this year's Food Sharing category, which was won by The Sister Table.
Guests were welcomed with cocktails and smoked eel onigiri made by Freddie Janssen of Snackbar, before moving upstairs for Som Saa chef John Chantarasak’s palm sugar-braised pork belly.
Servings of buttermilk fried chicken and truffled macaroni cheese also circulated the room, while Terri Mercieca of dessert bar Happy Endings served her specially created “YBF Soft Serve,” made with white cacao nibs and magic ice. Over in another corner, The Sandwich Show host Max Halley dished out mini sarnies and tables groaned with Lily Vanilli cakes, espresso martinis, and a giant wheel of cheese.
But at the centre of the action was the MUNCHIES DJ Booth, where guests sipped gin cocktails and danced under a canopy of hanging plants.
Photos by Alfie Sylvest.