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Food and drink round-up

Here come the girls as Candice and Rosaria scoop the cream of the food and drink awards crop

Published on January 14th 2010.

Food and drink round-up

SO, is the Italian Club Fish the best restaurant in Liverpool? Or is it Delifonseca? And what exactly is the difference between “Best Restaurant” and “Restaurant of Excellence.”

Who knows? But both were winners in each of these top categories in Monday night's inaugural Liverpool Food and Drink Awards at the Pan Am.

One thing is for certain: It was a victory for women: Rosaria Crolla, Glaswegian Italian, and Candice Fonseca, Blackburn lass. Both no-nonsense forces to be reckoned with, and each possessed of a love and understanding of proper, rustic, peasant food at the heart of everything they do. Well done both.

Winners were chosen by public vote which led to the London Carriage Works being chosen as... “Best Bar”. Who'd have thought it?

Full report from Gordo when he has recovered from the ordeal of discovering that an entire room of shocked diners in Ego were surveying his naked torso as he loomed large at the bathroom window of his Hope Street Hotel room. Blimey.


SPEAKING of Delifonseca, such has been the success of the Stanley Street shop, with Martin Cooper still strong at the helm in the kitchen, that they've decided to take on the South Docks.

In November, Delifonseca will open up in the Brunswick Dock premises previously occupied by Il Baccino, an ill-fated operation which had styled itself on...Delifonseca.

Ace up the sleeve is a counter selling meat from one of the best butchers you'll find in the North West. Brian and Fiona from the Anglesey butchers have been spoiling Liverpool Farmers Market customers for years now with their “special stuff”, and now there's a place to pin them down (or should that be truss?) anytime of the week.


THE Brunswick/Castle Street area continues to attract more and more restaurants and bars. With San Carlo's long awaited arrival in the city almost here, and Merchants throwing their doors open in 62 Castle St, Alma De Cuba's owners tell us they are soon to open a place opposite Restaurant Bar and Grill. Expect plenty of jostling for position and the “business district” dollar as Piccolinos, Heathcote's, Etsu and the Olive Press join the fun.

The question is will sufficient numbers of office workers stay out in town after work, and/or will they come back in from the suburbs? Alternatively, will the Mersey Tunnel and Moorfields continue to swallow them whole, like oysters, come five o'clock? It would be nice to think not.

IT'S Retro Sunday again (27th) at Leaf Tea Shop, giving you the opportunity to leave the modern world behind and step into the land of retro threads. “Enjoy an afternoon of dressing up, finding fashion pearls, drinking tea and seeing friends in the super relaxed setting of Leaf,” they say.

The bar will be open serving breakfasts, retro lunches and homemade cakes.

Sounds promising, but quite what a retro lunch is, we are not sure. Harking back to the school canteen, one might expect to be greeted by the aroma of two-hour-boiled sprouts, cold Smash and lambs liver with the texture of rubber, alternating (Tuesdays) with crinkle cut chips and mince in Bisto. Oh and plenty of tea. The one that the monkeys drink, please.

*Retro Sundays - Vintage Fair, Sun Sept 27, 11am-5pm at Leaf Tea Shop and Bar, 27 Parliament Street (in the Novas Centre), L8. 0151 707 7747


PLENTY of wind about this Thursday (24th) when trumpets meet taps of a different kind in the Philharmonic Hall's Grand Foyer Bar.

The CAMRA Liverpool Real Ale Pubs Festival will feature the launch of Liverpool’s newest real ale brewery, the Liverpool Organic Brewery, which will be offering the first of its cask ales from their base near Bank Hall.

There will also be a range of other Merseyside brewed real ales, demonstrating the area’s growing reputation as a centre for quality real ale brewing.

The Phil’s Oompah Band, consisting of members of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra’s brass section, will play for you while you drink from your horn of plenty.

The £2 tickets include a free pint and are available in advance of the event. Admission may also be available on the night. Book on 0151 709 3789


SPEAKING of the Phil and taps of yet another kind, it's funny the people who tap you on the shoulder at the Hope Street Feast.

This year Liverpool Confidential got engaged in banter with so many familiar and surprise people, that, quite frankly, they couldn't be bothered doing any pictures. You were all there anyway. You all know what it looked like. Lots of people and stalls in a busy Hope Street.

So there aren't any apart from one of hungover Deaf School who sounded better and better, acoustically, the further you backed away down Blackburn Place. Oh, and this one.

It was the usual super effort with little fanfare and a lot of goodwill to make it a memorable day attended by the world and their aunt. But not Tesco.

With the success rate of this event, surely it's only a matter of time before they make more of a meal out of the Feast and it starts to take on Mathew Street Festival proportions, but with food and artiness: A bit, in fact, like the Mathew Street Festival used to be.

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16 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

Liverpool wagSeptember 22nd 2009.

Bob K is right about evolved culture rather than imposed culture. Just make sure that you keep the cold, dead hands of the city council off it folks!

NickSeptember 22nd 2009.

Can anyone tell me what date San Carlo is opening?

DigSeptember 22nd 2009.

Pardon my ignorance but what has beer, organic or not, got to do with being vegan? Beer doesn't have bees in it does it?

CheeksSeptember 22nd 2009.

Big fan of real ale, especially local brew so pleased to see Liverpool Organic has opened, esp as I'm trying to go vegan. Had a few tries and it's a good sup. The IP and Iron Men are especially lish.

peter panSeptember 22nd 2009.

...correction: small will not mean bad.

peter panSeptember 22nd 2009.

Congratiulations for all the food & drink awards winners. We must not forget that this is the 2nd year and the ones who pionenered this event are been eaten by the new comers and the the big enterprises money (even multinationals restaurants were allowed, this year). I also desagree that the official sponsers can be nominated for awards.If you believe that a restaurant serving 400 people p/night can don it with quality, so create a small business award because nobody can compete with such big places. And if big does not mean good, small will mean bad

DigSeptember 22nd 2009.

Great atmosphere at Hope Street. Wished I wasn't working so I could have spent more than a lunch break there. I was very surprised & disappointed by how much the olive stall had hiked up it's prices though. A few weeks ago I bought a tub for £5.25. Same size tub this time? £8.50. I guess that's a festival for you. Where can you buy Liverpool Organic Brewery beers?

Bob KSeptember 22nd 2009.

Hope Street Feast is just bloody great - "evolved" culture rather than "imposed" culture, if you get my not inconsiderable drift. It's the best event on its scale in the city by a long way, for precisely this reason.

Shjim BeamSeptember 22nd 2009.


DigSeptember 22nd 2009.

What a wonderful place your imagination is Professor. You should invite people in to have a look around. I reckon it would be like a cross between a mass animal breakout at a zoo and a silent disco.

StingSeptember 22nd 2009.

There was one in mine a couple of months ago, when I was sitting in the beergarden. Could have been a bluebottle with a striped jumper.

Yuri the Ticket ClerkSeptember 22nd 2009.

Sir, British real ale is go to Vegan every half the hour frome Limey Street. Stooping at Broad Groan, Bittchwood and Saint of the Halluns.But if you want go Iron of Man, is no trains so you must the boat take frome the Poor head or you can make the Plane from June lemmons Hairports. But for catch plane you muss get bus or the taxes cab frome Soothe Perksway as there is no trains or tramps connection to the hairport sorry. So maybe best you drive yourselves in big fan

Ay!Carmela!September 22nd 2009.

The Hope St. Feast had a lovely atmosphere. Quite, quite charming.

JohnBSeptember 22nd 2009.

Liverpool Organic is on at The Belvedere, Ship and a couple of other pubs in town. Often at Stamps Too in Waterloo and Stamps in Crosby.

Vee DSeptember 22nd 2009.

It was good but I picked up one souvenir I didn't want

JohnBSeptember 22nd 2009.

Liverpool Organic Brewery have been selling for two weeks now. And very good beer it is!

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