Celebrity chefs to judge Reading Retail AwardsBy David Millward
May 10, 2012
Two top chefs will be on the judging panel for two key categories in this year’s Reading Retail Awards.
Celebrity chef Antony Worrall Thompson and Michelin star winning Daniel Galmiche will help decide which venues should be named the Restaurant of the Year and The Lovely Lunch winner.
Nominations are pouring in for the customer-based awards with big names from The Oracle doing battle with small independent eateries.
Stephanie Maynard, of the Event Crew which is organising the awards, said: “Now in its third year, the Reading Retail Awards have gone from strength to strength celebrating the outstanding retailing in and around Reading.
“This year to add to the success, we are delighted to welcome Michelin star chef Daniel Galmiche along with Reading resident and TV chef Antony Worrall Thompson on board to help judge two of our customers based awards, The Lovely Lunch and Restaurant of the Year.
“Having previously helped with the judging at the Pride of Reading, we know they come with a passion for the town and the excellence it serves up.”
Mr Worrall Thompson, who owns The Greyhound, in Rotherfield Peppard, and Mr Galmiche, formerly of l’ortolan, in Shinfield and now the Vineyard at Stockcross, will be considering Miller & Carter steakhouse, on The Riverside at The Oracle among others.
The restaurant, which only opened in February, was nominated by diner Claire Prendergast. She said: “I had the best steak I have ever eaten in my life here and I love steak.
“The staff are all extremely friendly and knowledgeable of the menu and more than happy to help or make suggestions.
“The decor is very modern and has a great feel to it.
“I have recommended this place to all my friends and cannot wait to go back again for my birthday in a few weeks’ time.”
Natalie Taylor, general manager of the Reading restaurant, was thrilled to hear of the nomination.
She said: “This is my first appointment with Miller & Carter so I’m very excited about it and my area manager is very pleased.
“It’s quite a new brand with only about 26 in the country so it’s really exciting to be nominated.”
Other categories in the customer-based awards are My Favourite Coffee Shop and The Shop I Can’t Live Without.
Categories in the business-based section are: Promotional Initiative of the Year, Independent Retailer of the Year, Multiple Retailer of the Year, Store Design and Environment of the Year, Shooting Star, Store Manager of the Year and Learner of the Year.
Nomination forms can be found in shops and restaurants around the borough or online at www.readingretailawards.co.uk