The Guild of Fine Food’s annual Shop of the Year awards, an accreditation which recognises and promotes excellence in independent retail, has announced its shortlist for 2018 and Aubrey Allen in Leamington Spa is among those in the running for the Best Delicatessen award. Having had its written entry reviewed by a panel of respected industry experts, Aubrey Allen will now undergo two further rounds of judging this summer, including an announced visit from one of the judges and a mystery shop by Shopper’s Anonymous.
Previously forming part of the Great Taste accreditation scheme, Shop of the Year has evolved to apply an even more rigorous and robust judging process dedicated solely to retail. Celebrating delis, farm shops, cheesemongers and more, Shop of the Year offers independent retailers a chance to achieve a stamp of approval with real integrity, much like Great Taste does for food and drink products.
From the overall shopping experience and financial performance to staff training opportunities and environmental initiatives, the panel of highly experienced judges, which includes Edward Berry of The Flying Fork, Stuart Gates, who has worked for both Harrods and Fortnum & Mason, award-winning retailer Tracey Colley and Georgina Mason from Gonalston Farm Shop, will rate, score and feedback on every aspect of Aubrey Allen before agreeing on an overall category winner.
Simon Kelly, Shop Manager, says “it’s an honour to be on the shortlist for such a fantastic award and to be recognised for all of the hard work that the deli team put in. Everyone takes such pride in the products we sell, from the latest additions to the cheese shop to our chef-prepared meals and picnics and we can’t wait to see what happens at the awards ceremony in September!”
On Thursday 20 September, Shop of the Year 2018 will reach an exciting finale when the world of fine food gathers at No. 42 Southwark Street, the Guild of Fine Food’s London base, to find out the winners of Best Delicatessen; Best Farm Shop or Garden Centre with Food Hall; Best Grocer, Village or Community Shop; and Best Specialist Cheese Shop.