Sue Nelson, the founder of the Yorkshire Food Finder says that Yorkshire is the only English county that has a larder better than France in terms of tradition, quality and quantity. She believes that it is not the hills, dales or scenic backdrop that has led the Tour de France to choose Yorkshire as the starting point for the 2014 race, it is the food that is causing the greatest annual sporting event in the world to come to God’s own county.
“Yorkshire is the only county in England with a larder that betters France for quantity, quality and tradition. So where else could Le Tour possibly start?” says Sue, whose guided gourmet tour company puts foodies in touch with the county’s top producers and chefs. “We’re the biggest beer, rapeseed, pork and seafood producer in the UK, and when it comes to beer, Yorkshire is a frothy head above the rest with more than 130 real ale brewers producing more than 920 different beers.”
Sue, who is developing a special Yorkshire Food Finder trail around Le Tour’s Grand Depart on July 5 and 6, says, like France, Yorkshire is home to thousands of talented artisan food and drink producers.
“They’re creating fabulous food but without the legendary status enjoyed by producers on the other side of the channel!” says Sue. “Our cheese, for example, is spectacular – think of award winners like Barncliffe Brie and Harrogate Blue – our Givendale and Dexter beef easily give French Charolais a run for their money as do our free-range poultry. Nothing can beat the lamb from Swaledale, Coverdale and the Wolds, or hoggets reared on the Howardian Hills, not to mention the PDO Yorkshire Forced Rhubarb, or Red Grouse and liquorice!”
Yorkshire Food Finder has 30 artisan food trails available for 2013 featuring a selection of these fabulous foods and award-winning producers. It will be developing a special trail for Le Tour traversing the spectacular scenery of the North Yorkshire moors and coast, the Dales and David Hockney’s beloved Wolds of East Yorkshire.