There is still time to enter the Seafood Restaurant of the Year, a competition organised by The Caterer and Seafish UK alongside Seafood Week to celebrate the individuals, teams and businesses showcasing seafood and excellent customer service in the foodservice industry.
Previous winners of the competition include Gamba in Glasgow in 2015, the Jetty in Christchurch, Dorset, in 2016; the Salt Room in Brighton, East Sussex, and the Idle Rocks, in St Mawes, Cornwall, in 2018.
The competition, now in its fifth year, highlights the best use and knowledge of seafood, especially under-used species. The competition is open to all UK restaurants and seeks to reward restaurants and other eateries that demonstrate both excellent examples of the cooking and serving of fish and shellfish and evidence of fish and shellfish knowledge.
Restaurants do not have to have a standalone fish menu or exclusively offer fish and shellfish to be considered. Businesses are asked to focus on examples of excellent customer service, innovative ideas to drive sales of fish and shellfish, and evidence of varied fish and shellfish dishes alongside sustainable policies and practices.
Guy Owen, the head chef of the Idle Rocks, last year’s winners, said: “We were absolutely over the moon to be awarded the Seafood Restaurant of the Year 2018. It was, without a doubt, thanks to the fantastic team here, who work so hard to understand our food and ensure that we are sourcing the fish and shellfish that we use in a responsible and sustainable manner in order to protect the biodiversity of our oceans.”
Besides the kudos of being judged by a prominent judging panel and the benefits to be gained from promoting your restaurant as an award-winning establishment, there are also a number of other prizes up for grabs.
Members of the winning restaurant will be invited on an all-expenses-paid study trip to Brixham in Devon, or to Peterhead in Aberdeenshire (the winner’s choice), to learn about the catching, processing and supply of seafood from either south-west England or north-east Scotland to other parts of the UK.
In addition to a winner’s trophy, the range of other prizes includes vouchers to be redeemed against cookery equipment and signed copies of cookery books.
Seafish aims to support all sectors of the seafood industry for a sustainable, profitable and socially responsible future. It is the only pan-industry body offering services to all parts of the industry, from the start of the supply chain at catching and aquaculture through to processing, importers, exporters and distributors, restaurants and retailers. Seafish is funded by a levy on the first sale of seafood landed in the UK and its services are intended to support and improve the environmental sustainability, efficiency and cost-effectiveness of the industry, as well as promoting sustainably sourced seafood.
Andy Gray, trade marketing manager for Seafish, said: “As consumers in the UK, we have a tendency to focus our seafood consumption on five main species – salmon, tuna, cod, haddock and prawns – and yet on any one day it is estimated that there is in excess of 100 different species of fish and shellfish available for consumers to purchase and enjoy in the UK; a veritable bounty from the seas.”
Questions regarding the competition can be sent to email@example.com
The competition is open to all restaurants in the UK, excluding the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man, which include fish and shellfish on their menus, and this may be served alongside meat and special diet dishes.