Monday, November 4, 2013


Country’s top food writers honoured

Book, website and broadcast. Food writer Annabel Langbein’s work across multiple media has earned her three of the six main honours in the 2013 New Zealand Guild of Food Writers’ Culinary Quill Awards.

Regarded as the top food writing prize in New Zealand, the 2013 Culinary Quill Awards have been announced at a function tonight (2 Nov.) in Dunedin.

Langbein, who spreads her time between her Auckland base and Wanaka in the South Island, wins Quills in the book, online and broadcast categories.

Other winners are Fiona Smith from Auckland in the visual category, Hamilton’s Denise Irvine, who takes the journalism Quill and Kathy Paterson (Auckland) who receives The Tui Flower Recipe Writing Quill.  Both Fiona and Denise were winners of their respective categories in 2011. 

Additionally, a Chief Judge’s Special Award was presented to Lesley Christensen-Yule and Lindsay Neill for their reference book The New Zealand Chef.

Annabel Langbein’s Culinary Quills were awarded for her book Simple Pleasures, her website and the second series of her TV show The Free Range Cook Simple Pleasures.  In 2011, Annabel also won a Quill for the first series.

Chief judge Margot Buick says the quality of the finalists in this year’s Culinary Quill Awards was of high calibre across all media.

“This reflects New Zealand’s increased interest in all things to do with food.  Guild members have risen to the challenge of providing nutritional information and food preparation techniques along with tantalising recipes that are beautifully illustrated and achievable,” Margot says.

Outgoing president of the NZ Guild of Food Writers Anne Scott says it is important to celebrate excellence in food writing in all media.

“The Culinary Quill Awards provide an important benchmark for all food writers to aspire to,” Anne says.


Culinary Quill – Book (sponsored by Chelsea Sugar)

Judge’s comments
This is a new collection from a very popular New Zealand food writer. The author has a strong following and very accessible recipes that fit well with the author’s established base. Simple Pleasures is a very practical, clear collection related to the author’s television series. There is good cross referencing, clear indexing and an emphasis on fresh produce.  The QR codes are an additional benefit along with the website reference for some recipes to watch videos of the recipe preparation. The menu suggestions are also a very useful addition.

Chief Judge’s Special Award
Lesley Christensen Yule and Lindsay Neill - The New Zealand Chef

Judge’s comments
The New Zealand Chef achieves its aim of providing a comprehensive reference book that is highly accessible and precise. It provides very good background information as well as an introduction to professional cooking techniques with an emphasis on New Zealand produce and style. This is not only an excellent textbook for students and practicing chefs but also a resource for all involved in the food production and development including home cooks.

Culinary Quill – Online (sponsored by Poultry Industry Association of NZ)
WINNER: Annabel Langbein –

Judge’s comments
There is no question that this website sets the benchmark in terms of design, content and navigation. It is practical and easy to use with elegant, beautifully photographed recipes, and useful menu ideas. The tone is confident, trustworthy, and reassuring, and knows its audience.

Culinary Quill – Broadcast (sponsored by
WINNER: Annabel Langbein TV Series – The Free Range Cook Simple Pleasures, Series 2

Judge’s comments
The series gives easy to follow instructions, with good descriptions on how things should feel, smell, or look so you know you have reached the right consistency etc. It also gives other uses for items that had been cooked or good ideas of what to do with leftovers. The recipes are not too complicated and would appeal to the average home cook wanting to try something new. A variety of visual effects and the presentation were of good quality.

Culinary Quill – Visual (sponsored by Regal Marlborough Salmon)
WINNER: Fiona Smith – 10 Big Bites at Summer; for Draft FCB                                                                                            

Judge’s comments
This visual was joyful, amusing and imaginative with huge impact and was beautifully balanced both scoop and colour wise. In terms of food styling, this is a well thought out image. This shot required a great deal of skill due to the ephemeral nature of ice cream.

Culinary Quill – The Tui Flower Recipe Writing Award (sponsored by NZ Guild of Food Writers)
WINNER: Kathy Paterson – Go Fish, Real

Judge’s comments
This article is well written with very easy to follow instructions. The dishes were chosen from a variety of different cuisines. They are well presented with very interesting detail, different cooking techniques and some vegetarian options as well. There are also good tips, alternatives to use, accompaniments and giving New Zealand fish options for the recipes. Go Fish has excellent relevance, giving lots of options for wowing family and friends without too much fuss. 

Culinary Quill – Journalism (sponsored by Deer Industry NZ)
WINNER: Denise Irvine – Zest for Life, Waikato Times

Judge’s comments
This article is first rate and a lively piece of reporting of the World Chef Showcase in Sydney and about Carluccio himself with an impressive bonus in the one-on-one interview. The side bars about restaurant critics and the art of the restaurateur from Gold and Durack were of additional interest.

No comments:

Post a Comment