FOOD and drink producers in the Cardigan area are savouring the sweet taste of success after being recognised in the 2018 Great Taste Awards.

Pride of place goes to Caws Teifi’s Celtic Promise, whose raw milk cheese produced at their Glynhynod Farm base tickled the judges’ tastebuds.

It earned the Llandysul firm a coveted three gold stars to add to a host of awards the company also won at the Royal Welsh Show and capped a hectic few weeks which also saw Prince Charles visit the site.

Owner John Savage-Onstwedder: “Celtic Promise is the most highly-awarded British cheese and it’s great to see all the hard work being rewarded again.”

The Caerphilly type washed-rind cheese’s soft, buttery texture, bold aroma and mild flavour appealed to the judges.

Allaways Coffee from Tanygroes claimed one gold star for its spicy chocolate and cedar noted coffee, as did Cardigan’s Mantle Brewery, based at Pentood Industrial Estate, for its full-flavoured Cwrw Teifi beer.

There were two stars for The Smokeshed’s sustainably sourced smoked salmon, while fellow Newport business Bluestone Brewery, based at Cilgwyn in the Preseli Hills, was toasting a double success.

Fossil Fuel, a 4.8 per cent coffee milk stout, and Bedrock Blonde, a four per cent blonde beer, both received one star.

The brewery’s Emily Hutchinson said: “It is the third year that we have entered our products and it means so much for our beers to be recognised for their quality.

“Having that Great Taste star on the label just gives our beers that extra credibility. We're really well supported by so many local businesses around Pembrokeshire and Ceredigion, so it's nice to be able to help those businesses out too - they can now shout about the fact that they're stocking award-winning beers.”

Cardigan Bay Fish was again a popular choice with the judges, with Mandy and Len Walters and son Aaron picking up two stars for its hand-picked white spider crab meat. Pembrokeshire Sea Salt Co, based in Dinas, also earned two stars for its natural sea salt

Out of a record-breaking 12,634 products to be judged this year across 35 categories, 177 Welsh firms gained a Great Taste star. Overall, just 192 products were awarded three3 stars, while 1,207 received two stars and 3,254 were given one star.

In September, the winners will find out if they have done enough to also claim the top awards for their region, at the Great Taste ‘golden fork’ dinner on September 2, in London.

Recognised as a stamp of excellence among consumers and retailers alike, Great Taste, organised by the Guild of Fine Food, values taste above all else, with no regard for branding or packaging.