Award Categories

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Best Craft Beer

Whether you brew your own beer or offer the most comprehensive selection of real ales, we want to celebrate those who fill Scotland’s pint with the best drink in town. Judges are looking for:
  • Uniqueness of product, why it stands out as the best
  • Quality of taste
  • Quality of packaging
  • Ingredients

Best Bar and Kitchen

Food in bars used to mean nuts, pork scratchings and prawn cocktail crisps. We have come far since then. Now it’s all about the burgers, pies and fish and chips and good comforting food to go with your pints, cocktails and wine. We want to hear about your local that does the best food and drinks combined whether it be something traditional or a more special little special. Judges will consider:
  • Value for money
  • Quality and variety of drinks
  • Quantity and variety of food
  • Comfort of environment

Use of Scottish Produce

Sponsored by
Great ingredients make a big difference in the kitchen. We are proud to support and celebrate the best sourcing, use and promotion of Scottish local produce. Nominate your favourite place that makes use of local Scottish ingredients to create great flavours in their kitchen’s. Judges are looking for:
  • Locally sourced produce in all elements of dishes
  • Locally sourced drinks available on the menu
  • Marketing promoting the use of Scottish produce

Best Scottish Spirit

Sponsored by
Some are perfect by themselves and others go well when you add a little something extra. No matter how you take yours, we want to celebrate this year’s surprises or the undefeated champion of spirits. Judges are looking for:
  • Uniqueness of product, why it stands out as the best
  • Quality of taste
  • Quality of packaging
  • Ingredients

Your Hidden Gem

Secret spots, creative locations, stunning views or quirky decor; whether you like them from the mystery they’re surrounded by or the crazy lampshade hanging from the ceiling, we want to celebrate Scotland’s best surprises. This event is the reader's choice, this will be narrowed down to 10 companies and put back to public to choose the winner. Judges will consider:
  • Location
  • Popularity
  • Visibility
  • Type of food

Best Newcomer

Sponsored by
This is a category where we are open to suggestions. We want to be impressed but have no preconceived ideas. We want to judge the entries on the impression they have made in a relatively short space of time. The bottom line is we want impact, rather than an established record. This category applies to restaurants that have opened from January 2017 onwards. Judges will consider:
  • Successes to date
  • First impressions
  • Originality

Most Dedicated Food Blogger

Sponsored by
Be it Instagram, Facebook or Snapchat we want to find that one blogger that makes your mouth water with their reviews of the best spots in town. Judges will consider:
  • Quality of writing
  • Quality of imagery
  • Number of blogs to date
  • Locations covered

Best Street Food

Sponsored by Bowhouse
Whether they are always on the road or have found a regular home in your city, they bring people together and offer satisfying quick bites to please people on the go. Judges will consider:
  • Both street food style restaurants as well as the more traditional “food on the street”
  • Cooking methods
  • Location
  • Menu

Best Dining Experience

The excitement, the preparation, the lighting, the service, the music, the wine that matches every bite of your menu selection so perfectly…nothing beats this complete dining experience. Help us celebrate the venue that has it all. Judges will consider:
  • Ambiance
  • Service
  • Presentation of the food/ drinks and restaurant
  • Uniqueness

Best Eco Friendly

This category celebrates the establishments that have the environment at the heart of their business. Maybe you know somewhere with a zero waste policy, somewhere that emphasises using seasonal and local produce, or runs the restaurant using clean energy? We want to hear all about the restaurants leading the way in the environmental revolution. Judges are looking for:
  • eco-friendly policies
  • impact on the local or wider environment
  • plans for the future

Best Chef

No one is more key to the success of a restaurant than its chef. The flair and skill of this person affects everyone else who works there, as well as the customer. We want to reward a chef who has shown inspiration and a desire to mould a restaurant in their form. We are looking beyond mere cooking skills to a person who can add that extra ingredient to create a staggering menu and take a restaurant to the next level. Judges will consider:
  • Presentation
  • Attention to detail
  • Cooking skills used
  • Knowledge

Best Cafe/Deli

You might go to escape the office for a while, catch up with friends over a coffee or run in to grab the meat and cheese selection that everyone has been raving about. It’s your greasy spoon or the newly opened delicatessen that has to be recognised. Judges will consider:
  • Hot drinks quality/ variety
  • Time to be served
  • Quality of food
  • Value for money

Best Local Pub

Quiet or crowded? DJ or jukebox? We want to find out what your local pub is all about and how it beats the rest. Judges will consider:
  • How long the pub has been in the area
  • Customer loyalty
  • Value for money
  • Entertainment (local band, fundraisers, sports, quizzes)