Winners of Fortnum and Mason Food and Drink Awards 2024 – we celebrate with the women who won

The Fortnum & Mason Food and Drink Awards 2024 are one of the most eagerly awaited dates in the culinary calendar.  Recognising excellence in food and drink writing, broadcasting and photography, for thirteen years, Fortnum and Mason are continually championing those who help others to enjoy, explore, experiment, and discover more about food and drink, through their writing, photography, and commentary.  It’s an area that women do very well in and this year was no exception.  Our co-founder Mecca Ibrahim was at The Royal Exchange for a star-studded awards ceremony on May 2nd 2024 to see the winners.

As with the 2023 Awards the ceremony was presented by chef, presenter of Great British Menu and broadcaster Andi Oliver, joined by Angela Hartnett who was chair of the judging panel.

The winners were selected by an independent panel of expert judges made up of Angela Clutton (pictured above with Georgina Hayden), Kate Hawkings, Leyla Kazim, Itamar Srulovich, Mark Andrew MW and Will Hawkes.

Food Book of The Year

Fuschia Dunlop won Food Book of the Year for her Invitation to a Banquet: The Story of Chinese Food.  This is an “epic” exploration of China’s culinary heritage and a wonderful accolade to be added to Fuschia’s many awards! Fuschia said “to all the friends and teachers in China who have fed me and talked to me and put up with my incessant questions for some 30 years: this book is really your book too and I couldn’t have written it without you“.

Cookery Book of The Year

Gohan: Everyday Japanese Cooking, Memories and Stories from My Family’s Kitchen by Emiko Davies won Cookery Book of The Year. It was wonderful to see a book about simple, everyday, homely Japanese food in the shortlist.  Emiko said of the food in the book, that its the food she craves when not feeling her best and needing comfort food. “It’s probably the most special book to me that I’ve ever written… I couldn’t have done this without my mum, Sumie, and my sister Hana, who worked on my photos. I had the support from some other amazing Asian women who made this book shine too“.


In a strong category the award went to the Sheila Dillon (pictured above with Leyla Kazim and Asma Khan)  and the team at the BBC Radio 4’s The Food Programme “Food Under Siege” It’s a very hard to listen to but important episode which was recorded in Gaza and investigated how the current conflict had impacted food supplies in one of the most densely populated places on earth.

Debut Drinks Book

How to Drink Australian won the Debut Drink Book category.  Jane Lopes and Jonathan Ross are a Nashville-based married couple who met while working as sommeliers in New York. Their comprehensive, region-by-region guide was described by wine critic Huon Hooke as ‘an outstanding piece of work’

Mex Ibrahim and Jaega Wise - Fortnum and Mason awards 2024

Mex caught up Jaega Wise who was the winner of Fortnum’s Debut Drinks Book Award in 2023 and had a chat with her about last year’s awards and her work on the BBC Food Programme.

Drinks Writer of the Year

Angela Hartnett, Tamlyn Currin and Andi Oliver at Fortnum & Mason Food and Drink Awards 2024

 Photo credit to Dave Benett/Getty

This award went to Tamlyn Currin Senior Editor at  Jancis Robinson.com  for her work. We last saw Tamlyn at a great event about women wine writers curated by Queena Wong last September.

Mex Ibrahim and Helen McGinn - Fortnum and Mason Food and Drink Awards 2024

It’s hard not to talk about drinks without mentioning wine expert Helen McGinn who was one of the many Saturday Kitchen regulars at the awards to support Matt Tebbutt who was shortlisted for Personality of the Year. Mex is a big fan of Helen (aka KnackeredMother) and it was an honour to meet her at the awards.

Carmen O Neal, Karen Barnes, Mex Ibrahim and Caroline Kenyon - Fortnum and Mason Awards 2024

Also at the awards was Saturday Kitchen’s cocktail expert Carmen O’Neal (she’s the first female drinks producer to be registered B Corp for 58andCo – it was a joy to see her again she was on our social media panel for  International Women’s Day). Carmen is pictured above with some more great women at the awards –  Karen Barnes former editor of Delicious Magazine and Caroline Kenyon Founder of The Food Awards Company and powerhouse of the Pink Lady Food Photographer of the Year Awards.

Amanda Ross, Mex Ibrahim and Mandy Yin at the Fortnum and Mason Awards 2024

Mex also caught up with Amanda Ross CEO & Co-Founder of Cactus TV who has produced Saturday Kitchen for the past 17 years and restaurateur and author, Mandy Yin of Sambol Shiok a regular guest on the show.

Mecca Ibrahim and Ching-He Huang

Even more of the Saturday Kitchen family were at the awards and Mex caught up with Ching-He Huang and chatted about Ken Hom who was celebrating 40 years on the BBC with a recent Saturday Kitchen episode dedicated to him and Ching-He was honoured to cook for her “Cantonese Dad” on the show.

Poppy O'Toole and Mex Ibrahim - Fortnum and Mason Awards 2024

Almost five minutes after arriving at the awards Mex bumped into another Saturday Kitchen regular Poppy O’Toole and they had caught up to discuss the food and fun that lay ahead. It gave Mex the opportunity to thank Poppy for some of the very kind comments she had made about Women in The Food Industry on Twitter recently.

Cookery Writer

Melek Erdal

All three shortlisted writers in this category were women. The award went to Melek Erdal for her work in Vittles & The Guardian

TV Programme

The best TV programme on food or drink went to Sophie Grigson’s Slice of Italy – series two.  In this second series chef Sophie Grigson shares her new world in beautiful Puglia. In the show Sophie meets locals and finds delicious ingredients, as part of her new Italian life.

Sophie Grigson - Slice of Italy

Best Food Photographer

Photo credit to Dave Benett/Getty

The photography award went to Patricia Niven. She said “I love & feel so comfortable in the food world, it really is full of the kindest, best & funnest people. Creating beautiful work together with the people who inhabit this little corner of the world is my joy.

Speaking of fun and photography here are some more photos from our co-founder of the awards where she had fun catching up with some of her favourite people in the food and drinks industry who were celebrating that night.

Elisabeth Luard and Asma Khan - Fortnum and Mason Awards 2024

Elisabeth Luard & Asma Khan

Mex Ibrahim and Mallika Basu - Fortnum and Mason Awards 2024

Mex Ibrahim & Mallika Basu

Becky Excell and Hatty Cary - Fortnum and Mason Awards 2024

Becky Excell and Hatty Cary

Dominique Woolf and Mex Ibrahim - Fortnum and Mason Awards 2024

Dominique Woolf & Mex Ibrahim

The Ragoon Sisters

The Ragoon Sisters

Lerato food & Mex Ibrahim

Lerato Umah Shaylor (who was shortlisted for Content Creator of The Year) & Mex Ibrahim

Orlando Bloom and Georgina Hayden - Fortnum and Mason Awards 2024

Orlando Murrin & Georgina Hayden

Phil Khoury and Mex Ibrahim - Fortnum & Mason Awards 2024

Phil Khoury – winner of Debut Cookery Book at Fortnum & Mason Awards and Mex Ibrahim

Julie Lin and Mecca Ibrahim - Fortnum and Mason Awards 2024

Julie Lin & Mex Ibrahim

You can see the full list of winners of the Fortnum & Mason Food and Drink Awards for 2024 here.  Thank you Fortnums for a wonderful night.

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