London has long been Britain’s culinary star, but according to new rankings by UK food magazine Olive, a new city has taken the foodie crown.
awarded based on famous foods, festivals, local initiatives, food retail shops
and restaurants, Birmingham in the West Midlands beat both London and Edinburgh
2011 list of the UK’s foodiest towns. Britain’s second largest city earned high
marks across all categories, scoring points for being home to the Creme Egg-creating
hosting three annual food festivals and organizing not one, but two of the
country’s best farmers markets , established Moseley Farmers’ Market and
Community Market. Birmingham’s Balti,
a curry dish invented in the 1970s, also helped drive home the win.
Shropshire, England, the town of Ludlow took the silver medal for its role as pioneer
of Britain’s slow food movement. The Local
to Ludlow organization runs a twice-monthly produce market, community
cookery classes and farm visits. An annual September food fest, the Ludlow Marches Food and Drink
Festival, features 180 independent producers, with specialty butchers
competing for the “Sausage of the Year” award.
the “rural capital of food”, Melton Mowbray tied for third place with Edinburgh
in the awards. The birthplace of afternoon tea, stilton cheese and pork pies,
the Leicestershire town earned the highest points in claims to food fame.
Edinburgh scored high for its Michelin-starred restaurants and a university-backed
project that teaches food skills and promotes locally grown foods.
London came in fourth, though the city still showed strongly in food retail
with heavyweights like Harrods and Fortnum & Mason, the world’s
first Slow Food shop,
and specialty shops like Dadu’s, a
Caribbean-Asian grocery in Tooting. The city lost major points for
tourist-traps like Angus Steakhouse
and Garfunkel’s, and for having the
world’s biggest McDonald’s in Olympic Park.
and Ramsbottom rounded out the list; Welsh Abergavenny for its recently
Michelin-starred Walnut Tree and
Black Mountains lamb, and Manchester-neighbour Ramsbottom for its wild garlic
and South Indian cuisine.