BRADFORD district food firms have smashed their efforts from last year’s Great Taste Awards, with 25 winners in the 2022 edition.

The annual awards honour businesses across the country with the best products and gold stars are awarded to recognise the excellence of either their food or drink items.

They are organised by the Guild of Fine Food, with 144 judges – leading critics, chefs, buyers and restaurateurs – pouring through thousands of entrants to come up with a definitive list.

Products receive a one, two or three-star rating if they are ranked among the best by judges, with the majority receiving no rating at all, which goes to show how exclusive and illustrious the Great Taste Awards are.

There were 19 products from the Bradford district that won some form of award last year and this has increased by a huge 31 per cent to 25 this time.

These are shared among 10 different businesses – a slight rise on nine in 2021 – with four two-star awards and 21 two-star prizes.

The Yorkshire Smokehouse at Mackenzies, Yorkshire Pecorino Cheese, both in Otley, and Chef Akila, in Keighley, are flying the flag for the district with four awards apiece.

Yorkshire Pecorino had the most two-star awards, with two, for its Leeds Blue and Holy Ewe cheeses.

The former earnt it a three-star prize in 2021 (the only one for West Yorkshire that year) but there was joy to be had for The Yorkshire Smokehouse and Lishman’s of Ilkley, in Leeds Road in the town this time around.

The Handcut & Delicately Smoked Yakitori Salmon earnt The Yorkshire Smokehouse its first appearance on the prestigious list with a two-star award, while Lishman’s went one step better this year, receiving two stars for its Coppa meat cut – after getting one star for both its Smoked Dry Cured Back Bacon and Pork & Fennel Salami in 2021.

Chef Akila’s received one-star awards for its Malabar Ghee Rice, Spinach Dal Kootu, Chicken Sukka Fry and Kerala Fried Chicken Biryani – one more than last year.

Grandma Wild’s, based in Steeton, won three one-star awards, one again for its infamous Ginger Biscuits and two new entries – Dark Chocolate Ginger Biscuits and Milk Chocolate All Butter Salted Caramel Biscuits.

There were two one-star awards for the saucy efforts of Spice Heroes, in Bingley (Yūsha Sauce and Smokehouse Bad Boy), while Lottie Shaw’s, in Brighouse (Sloe Gin Fruit Cake and Yorkshire Parkin), Casa Espresso Ltd, in Shipley (Charlestown Espresso Blend and Unione Espresso Blend), and Aagrah, in Shipley (Onion Bhaji Mix and Kashmiri Korma Tarka Sauce) all got double one-star awards for their products.

Social Libation Ltd, in Pudsey, rounded the Bradford district list out, with a one-star award for its John Roberts Botanic Request: London Dry Gin.

There were no three-star awards this time around for the area but the number of one-star prizes leaped up from 14.

Only six three-star awards were given out to the county overall – all for tea and coffee firms – with Marsden’s Dark Woods Coffee taking the lion’s share of those (four).