From sodas farls to wheaten, barmbrack and boxty, Northern Ireland is well known for its unique bread and baking traditions.

In recent years new and different breads are emerging in cafes and bakeries across Northern Ireland and with that is coming a resurgence in traditional baking methods. With different monthly themes throughout 2016, September has the distinction of Bread & Baking month as part of the Northern Ireland Year of Food and Drink and to celebrate, the BBC Good Food Show Northern Ireland is on the hunt for Northern Ireland’s Best Bakery.

To enter, bakeries were asked to submit a short video capturing ‘a day in the life of the bakery’ highlighting all the stages of a typical day at the bakery – from choosing the finest ingredients, to baking their products and serving to local customers. All videos were of a very high standard and those who did not make the shortlist should also be highly commended.

The following bakeries have been shortlisted:

Belfast Baking Company


The Heatherlea, Bangor


Ann’s Pantry, Larne and St George’s Market


Knead Bakery, Newtownards


Cookie Jar, Newcastle

Cookie Jar

Plus, the winner of the most shares and likes via social media are also automatically shortlisted…

The Rosehip Café and Bakery, Banbridge


The shortlisted bakeries will need to send a selection of their baked goods to a tasting day where judges, including Aine Kearney from Tourism Northern Ireland, Michele Shirlow from Food NI and lecturers Lorna Johnston & Mark Magee from the NI Home Bakery School at Belfast Metropolitan College. Judges will be scoring the products on a range of criteria, including taste and appearance.

LI2255060@glazing bagels

The winner will receive a free stand at the BBC Good Food Show Northern Ireland at Belfast Waterfront 14 – 16 October to showcase their produce to thousands of food loving visitors, plus the opportunity to meet local celebrity chef Paul Rankin at the Show.

Visitors to the new BBC Good Food Show Northern Ireland can enjoy a delicious day out in the food-loving city of Belfast. Visitors will be able to see top chefs cooking regional and seasonal dishes live in the Supertheatre, including James Martin, Paul Hollywood and The Hairy Bikers, plus local star Paul Rankin leading the Northern Ireland Year of Food and Drink sessions. Visitors can delve into the wealth of fantastic produce that Northern Ireland has to offer, and discover, sample and buy from the producers themselves in the Food NI Pavilion and Producers’ Village, plus shop from favourite brands around the Show.

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