Celebrity foodies including former “Hell’s Kitchen” finalist and Jordan Caterer exec chef Kevin Cottle and culinary expert Prudence Sloane were among those who traipsed to the Aqua Turf club in Plantsville Thursday to judge the annual Product Awards competition sponsored each year by the CT Specialty Food Association.
More than 180 products produced in Connecticut were vying for awards in categories including cheese, wines, jams, dressings, breads, desserts, vinegars, frozen food, snack food and sweet toppings.
“We had a different balance this year,” said organizer Tricia Levesque, association director. “A lot of newer companies entered and some of our veteran companies chose not to compete, but we have almost the same number of entries as last year.”
The annual event is designed to showcase local food producers from around the state and determine who makes the best of the best in Connecticut.
Tabulating scores from judges won’t be done until Friday with winners being announced on Monday.
For the record, Java was a judge for the fourth year in a row, this year judging jams, non-alcoholic beverages, gluten-free snacks and desserts and vinegars. A perfect workday!
Last year Chaplin Farms LLC of Chaplin won “product of the year” with its apple pie jam.