Taste North 2019 featured many foodie and family including chef's demonstrations, cocktail masterclasses and workshops. Our incredible guest of honour was Jean Christophe Novelli who delighted the audience with three live cooking demonstrations.
The Exhibitor's Market offered everyone the opportunity to sample food from local eateries and producers, taste our local tipples and see an array of artisan crafts from right here in Caithness & Sutherland. For families, there was plenty of children’s entertainment and as well as craft activities.
Taste North 2019 would not have been possible without the support of our generous sponsors of both the event and the Taste North Challenge -
NDA, Rock Rose Gin, Together Travel Co, Caithness Chamber through their Developing the Young Workforce initiative, Mackays Hotel and The Gordon and Ena Baxter Foundation.
Our Guest of Honour for 2019 was Jean Christophe Novelli
Jean-Christophe Novelli is a 5 out of 5 AA Rosette and Michelin award-winning chef, who is also dubbed “the nations favourite french chef”.
He began his exciting career at the tender age of fourteen as a baker in his home town of Arras, Northern France, before becoming the private Head Chef to Elie de Rothschild at the age of 19.
Jean-Christophe’s life changed completely when he arrived in Great Britain in 1983. he spent a year taking care of Keith Floyd’s pub, ‘The Maltsters’, as Head Chef, whilst Keith was filming his famous TV shows. In 1996, Jean-Christophe then opened four restaurants in London, and so began the foundations for his internationally based mini-empire. What is so surprising is that he only had £500 in his pocket to start this solo venture.
In conjunction with Baxters and The Gordon & Ena Baxter Foundation, we launched the Taste North Challenge competition in 2015. The competition began as a means to inspiring our local students to come up with new recipe ideas that reflect the abundance of incredible ingredients right here on our doorstep.
The annual baking competition returned this year with support from Developing the Young Workforce - North Highland, The Gordon and Ena Baxter Foundation and Mackays Hotel, Wick. The competition had a record number of entries with Jean-Christophe Novelli leading the judging panel to decide on winners Katie Carlisle of Pennyland Primary School in the Youth Category and Jodie Wilson in the Open Category, who was also crowned the overall winner.
Open Category and Overall winner, Jodie Wilson said "I'm just delighted to win against such stiff competition. I'm thrilled."
Youth Category winner, Katie Carlisle said "I'm extremely surprised as I didn't think I would win. My mum inspired me to do this. I love baking and do it as often as I can."
The winners of the Taste North Challenge 2019 being presented with their prizes. Left to right - Jean Christophe Novelli, Trudy Morris (Caithness Chamber of Commerce), Annie Mills (overall winner 2018), Jodie Wilson (Open Category and Overall Winner), Ellie Lamont (Mackays Hotel and Venture North) and Katie Carlisle (Youth Category Winner).