Bannister Downs Dairy took home the People’s Choice prize at the WA Good Food Guide Awards for its Farm Fresh Milk, while La Delizia Latticini was awarded Producer of the Year, for cheese made from the very same milk.
Bannister Downs managing director Sue Daubney said the award was a testament to everything the team does to offer the very best tasting and nutritious milk.
“This encompasses all the decisions we make from how we care for our cows, our world-class processing facility in Northcliffe, through to our sustainable packaging. It all makes a difference and we’re proud to be recognised for producing premium quality milk.”
Sponsored by Buy West Eat Best, the People’s Choice Award is voted by the public, with West Australians encouraged to nominate their favourite product or produce.
“We love winning awards from consumer votes – it tells us we’re on the right path,” Sue said. “Now, more than ever, people want ethically produced products and think carefully about our health and what we put into our bodies.”
Sue was also delighted to see the team from La Delizia Latticini, Dom and Kirsty Boccia and head cheesemaker Antonio Caroli, win WA Producer of the Year.
“I’m very proud of the wonderful fresh Italian cheeses that La Delizia Latticini has brought to Perth,” she said. “I am not sure how many people had even heard of burrata until Dom, Kirsty, Giovanni, Antonio and their growing team started their cheese lab in Vic Park and now it is definitely ‘a thing’. So great to see our fresh milk showcased in top quality fresh cheeses!”
Dom was over the moon, having gone along to the awards at his wife’s behest without a thought of winning. “It was an amazing night and for Sue to win, too – I speak to Sue every day!” he said. “It was unbelievable- when everyone is proud of what you do, it means a lot.”
It also means a lot that the chefs who use their handcrafted cheese, which also include mozzarella, stracciatella and ricotta, are the ones voting for it. “I said in my speech that the winners are also the chefs because they take the simple product and create like a fantasy; each one does something different with it,” he said.
The team at La Delizia Latticini have come a long way since they began three years ago, moving from their tiny ‘lab’ to a warehouse in Victoria Park as demand for their artisan cheese grew. The team now supplies more than 300 customers, including restaurants and retail outlets such as The Good Grocer.
“We love what we do and people are happy to have our fresh cheese – we have had people go on holiday to Italy and they come back and say ‘your cheese is better than in Italy’,” Dom says with pride. WA’s chefs clearly agree.
Buy West Eat Best has supported the People’s Choice category at the prestigious awards for the past three years, with members Sweeter Banana and Turban Chopsticks winning in 2021 and 2022 respectively.
Program manager Melissa Worthington said the partnership with WAGFG was a wonderful way to acknowledge the importance of the State’s hospitality and food service sector, which employed more than 157,000 people across 8000 businesses in 2021-2022, turning over more than $8 billion.
“The partnership also helps raise the profile of local food producers and amplify the ‘support local’ message that is the cornerstone of Buy West Eat Best,” Melissa said.
“WAGFG and Buy West Eat Best use their combined networks, social and digital audiences to remind Western Australians of the diversity and abundance of quality local ingredients on their doorstep.”
There was plenty of appreciation for that quality in the runners-up in both categories, too, with McLoughlin Butchers pork sausages and Merre Granola earning votes from the public. The Mushroom Guys and Halls Dairy Family also did their teams proud, with the Buy West Eat Best members named runners-up in the Producer of the Year category. The Mushroom Guys were going for their second win in a row after taking home the award last year.
“These winners and runners-up represent the many Western Australians who produce fresh and fabulous food and drinks for our tables year in, year out,” Melissa said.
“It was wonderful to be able to celebrate their successes with all the others who work so hard in the industry at the WA Good Food Guide Awards.”
This year, Buy West Eat Best member The Good Grocer also came on board as the awards’ inaugural presenting partner. Announcing the partnership with the WA-owned retailer, WA Good Food Guide director Georgia Moore said it would enable a range of initiatives, including sell-through for drinks award finalists, in-store producer activations, cooking education programs.
“We both recognise that the food and drink culture here is something to celebrate, whether you’re eating out or cooking for friends and family at home,” she said. “It comes back to the great producers throughout the state.”
Check out all the winners from the WA Good Food Guide AwardsThe WAGFG 2024 Winners