This award will recognise the outstanding contribution of an individual or business with a focus on promoting local Ayrshire food. The Local Food Hero Award will be awarded to those who have shown a particular commitment to the production, sales or promotion of local food and drink, resulting in the long term benefit and development of their business and the local area
On Thursday 10th October 2013 Cosses Country House were delighted and proud to win the Ayrshire Chamber Local Food Hero Business Award .
Both the Ayrshire Chamber team and the Taste Ayrshire team should be congratulated for all their sterling work in contributing to the success of both organisations. Both bode well for the future of Ayrshire businesses. Having not been to an awards dinner for a few years it was both refreshing and reassuring to see so many thriving businesses all competing for success.
Cosses Country House is a Visit Scotland 5 Gold Star/ Green Gold/ Wolsey Lodge offering pre-eminent home hospitality at affordable prices. The culinary experience is a major part of the total experience and all the food is home grown or sourced from exemplary local suppliers. Cosses Country House goes out of its way to promote other local organisations/products to its guests to give them an out-standing visitor experience. Cosses Country House has guests from all over the world.
We grow most herbs and vegetables -from seed; orchard and berry fruit and flowers. We source other food from the Ayrshire Food Network/ Braehead Foods and Pieroni. We encourage our guests to dine and buy produce form other Ayrshire Food Network and Taste Ayrshire members. We only serve Scottish Cheese (much of it from Dunlop Dairies and Barwheys) and home-made oatcakes. I make all my own bread and preserves. Since the early 90’s when I was on the Taste Of Scotland inspection team I have endorsed local food and drink. I have actively worked with various committees to promote Ayrshire Food and Drink.
Promotion of local produce is through: Direct conversation and suggested itineraries with guests and guest information in the rooms. My food is always a talking point amongst guests. Each individual menu describes the source of all the food even down to the variety of potato. (I grow about 15 varieties to give me the right potato to match the right food.) Menus are balanced and seasonal. Through writing and sale of my book – ‘A Country Cook’s garden in South West Scotland’. Helping with a stall to sell and promote Barwheys cheese, Marburry Smokehouse at the Ballantrae Farmer’s Market and Ayrshire Chamber B2B exhibition.
Working in direct partnerships with Glenapp Castle, the Whisky Experience, Pebbles Bistro, Woodland Bay Hotel (latterly farm-shop), Dowhill and using local wine suppliers – Corney and Barrow and Alexander Wine. Offering guests local beer from Ayr Brewery and promoting whisky from the whisky experience (Banknote is our standard blend – 60% of which is made at Grants in Girvan). Many guests visit the whisky experience and make purchases. Suggesting, encouraging and helping Ballantrae Farmer’s Market at Craigie Mains Garden Centre– promoting other farmers markets to guests.
Guests often stay and have dinner at Glenapp Castle one evening, we drive them there and the castle brings them back. Glenapp Castle recommends Cosses to guests they cannot accommodate to stay with us when they are doing large functions. Some local suppliers sell my book. We have worked with Dalduff Farmshop for over 25 years and there is mutual promotion.
Local Food and drink is the hall mark of our business. Visitors come to Cosses repeatedly for the ‘food’ and drink experience. Many guests buy a cook book.
See page from my visitor book- below and Trip Advisor: