Shetland Food And Drink Recognised In Awards

by Alastair Hamilton -

Three Shetland food and drink businesses have made it through to the finals of the Highlands and Islands Food and Drink Awards.

The successful Shetland entrants are a brewery, a cheesemaker and a fish and chip restaurant.

The nominated beer is the Lerwick Brewery's 60° North and Alison Graham, from the Lerwick Brewery, said:

“60° North is proving really popular with drinkers right across Scotland, and its reach is growing in the rest of the UK too. Drinkers love the depth of taste coupled with the lack of artificial fizz so redolent of many mass- market lagers. It's a refreshing take on lager – as one reviewer said "how lagers should be" – and we are delighted that 60° North has been recognized by the Highlands & Islands Food & Drink Awards. It's a fantastic accolade to be a finalist.”

Like the brewery, the Shetland Cheese Company is a young company. It was established in premises at Skeld, in the west mainland, by a couple who moved from London to Shetland for a complete change of lifestyle. Its St Ninian's soft cheese is nominated in the new product category.

Frankie's Fish and Chips hasn't been around for much longer but is already the holder of many awards. Occupying purpose-built premises in the northern village of Brae, diners can eat in with a great view over the sea, or choose a takeaway. The menu isn't limited to fish and chips; among many other options are delicious mussels, grown in the waters just a mile or so from the restaurant. The firm is nominated as best eatery.

Chair of the judges, Stephen Rankin, commented:

“It was fantastic to review such a diverse range of entries from a brilliant blend of well-established companies to youngsters and new businesses just starting out in the industry. The latter group"s bravery and willingness to take on responsibility has to be admired and recognised."

The winners of all the awards, which are in 12 categories, will be announced at the Awards Dinner and Ceremony at the Kingsmills Hotel, Inverness on Friday, 24th October, hosted by popular presenter and comedian Fred MacAulay.