PEOPLE voted with their tastebuds at Stratford Town Centre Food Festival.
The votes are have now been counted in the festival’s , which ran across both days of the festival, and saw around 800 people working their way around participating town centre food and drink businesses.
Two Taste Trails and one Ale Trail took place on each day of the festival, giving visitors the chance to try out different venues in the town centre.
Following the public vote, The Waterside Brasserie at the Arden Hotel took the title for both the blue taste trail on the Saturday and the blue trail on the Sunday.
The Red Taste Trail on the Saturday was won by Carluccio’s, which has scooped the title previously. Vigour Cafe also retained its Taste Trail title, winning Sunday’s red trail.
Special recommendations on the trails – those who scored highly in the votes but were pipped to the post by the winners – were awarded to Fizz and Fin, the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust’s Hall’s Croft, and El Greco.
Prizes were also awarded for the best beers featured during the ale trail, with the People’s Choice of favourite beer going to Red Fox by Fullers at The Old Thatch Tavern. The Experts Choice, chosen by Shakespeare CAMRA, went to The Swan Cafe Bar at the RSC.
The Stratforward-organised event also included a programme of demonstrations by chefs from local restaurants, a market showcasing local and regional producers and hands-on workshops and live music in Bell Court.
Stratforward director Joe Baconnet said: “The trails are always an incredibly popular part of the festival. They’re a great way for businesses to showcase what they do and get people through the door for a taste of their offering.
“Each year we hear that people have returned to Stratford’s restaurants, bars, pubs and cafes after discovering them on the festival trails so it’s a tried and tested way of showing people the huge variety of food and drink we have on offer here in Stratford.
“Congratulations to all the businesses involved. Festival-goers were full of praise for all of the food and drink retailers who featured on the trails so everyone should be proud of what they laid on – especially despite such inclement weather.”