>> Tuesday, 19 July 2011
You would have seen that our internet access in terms of the physical length of time taken to go to write blog posts and being scared that the Sunday security barrier in front of Rosalind's Kitchen might not come back up, led to live blogging being stopped.
So rather than me continuing the live blogging today - I thought I'd let our finalists' Tweets on the day speak for themselves!
My last post was at 12.40 when the finalists were roughly halfway through their two and half hour cooking time. We had seen that #nomnomnom11 was Top Trending in London - which was obviously fantastic, but led to a lot of spammers jumping on the bandwagon & using the hashtag in their Tweets, when they had no idea what it was for. We actually later discovered that one of the spammers made a donation to our charity fundraising page - so I can't really complain about that.
We also got a Tweet from Channel 4 Food's website as a result of Top Trending which was all very nice! Fancy getting involved next year guys?!!!
Cooking was going well & in true Nom Nom Nom finalist style, was aided by some alcohol.
Sian from the Domestic Sluttery team tweeted "Gin and chocolate. Doing #nomnomnom11 right".
By 1.30pm the expert judges had started to arrive. Julia Parsons was first. She was a former NomNomNom Judges Choice winner and founder of the UK Food Bloggers' Association (with her own book A Slice of Cherry Pie out) and Tweeted "Smells incredible here; a heady aromatic cloud filling the room. #NomNomNom11"
She got down to snapping pictures of the finalists' work straight away!
Judge, food writer Jenni Muir was also on the way and tweeting. "#nomnomnom11 Oi! Hirsute chaps. Where are your beard nets?"
Next judge in was Darryl Healy, Executive Chef, from nearby Riding House Café. He wasted no time doing the rounds of the kitchen and watching the finalists in the final stages of cooking.
Cooking finished at around 2.15pm and the finalists got ready to take a well deserved rest and eat the food they had prepared, while the judges went off in their judgely huddle.
Victoria from Nice Glass said in a tweet "Cook off complete: I feel catatonic with tiredness and now for food and WINE! #nomnomnom11"
James Whatley from The Hirsute Hashtag Slingers very impressively had time to write a blog post with a picture of their plated food! He tweeted "It's judging time http://post.ly/2VyXu #nomnomnom11"
Cookery School staff worked with lightening speed to put out the rest of the food for the finalists to enjoy
Gemma Cartwright tweeted "Best bit of #nomnomnom11 is trying everyone else's food afterwards. Mostly the cake. Wow."
Farhan from Asian Invasion tweeted "Yay! Time to munch on some lunch, #nomnomnom11 http://t.co/LUCyQLo"
Farhan said "Desserts are so plentiful! So much to choose from including @TotalGreek and @gupuds http://t.co/zryfJhW"
This year we wanted to try to raise even more money for Action Against Hunger so we held a small private raffle for the finalists, who bought tickets over lunch.
Over lunch the finalists also had a chance to test out the new app from Great British Chefs one of NomNomNom's supporters.
12 Michelin starred chefs have created iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch app containing 180 exclusive recipes, stunning photography and "how to" video techniques. More pictures of the Great British Chefs app in action are here.
After lunch we set out to draw the raffle. But to make the raffle more fun, we ran a Food and Drink Quiz where the finalists were tested on their pop culture, food & drink knowledge with questions related to the prizes.
I'll try to get the quiz up here on in the next few days so you can see how well you would have done. There was much shouting of answers, a lot of random guesses, a bit of luck and some inventive cheating!
Farhan from Asian Invasion tweeted "#nomnomnom11 prizes being won, left right and centre, then I win vouchers for comedy, yay! yfrog.com/kkvbzkij"
The person who got the most points in the quiz got to take home a collection of prizes too and Sian proved to be the best in the quiz. She tweeted: "Yay! I won the #nomnomnom11 food quiz!"
Timing was perfect, as just before the quiz ended, the Judges emerged from their huddle to announce who would be the winners of the Expert Judges Choice.
Tete a Tea looked genuinely shocked when their team name was announced.
Sharon & Lea now have to fight over their wonderful prizes kindly donated by Cuisinart and KitchenAid.
Head chefs, Darryl Healy from Riding House Cafe and Tom Pemberton from Hereford Road then gave a brilliant short critique of each of the finalists' menus.
Sian summed up this very well by Tweeting: "The judges are giving us awesome feedback. Fair, helpful and friendly. Yay. #nomnomnom11" I would also like to thank our truly wonderful NomNomNom Judges for freely giving up their time to judge the event. Also Ros's team from Cookery School were simply brilliant this year.
Remember the Judges Choice is only part of the contest. The finalists now have two weeks to complete their blog posts and we then open up votes for everyone to choose their favourites in the Viewer's Choice NomNomNom Award.
Each of the finalists then had to pick up two goody bags packed with lovely goodies from our supporters. You can see their logos on the right of this page and I must thank them all for being so, so, generous this year.
Finally we all headed over to nearby Market Place bar to continue the celebrations.
I love the last two pictures of Nom Chompsky (judges said they had the best team name!) - Tom & Chris taken by Sian. I never knew she was such a good portrait photographer. The rest of her pictures from the day are in this set.
So for now - that's it. Watch this space for more photos and the blog posts for the Viewer Choice which should appear by Monday 8th August 2011. In the meantime please enter our raffle for Action Against Hunger where you could win a fantastic selection of food and drink related prizes.
Keep an eye on the Twitter hashtag #nomnomnom11 too as I'm sure there will still be some fun stuff going on there.