A Limerick based confectionary company Pandora Bell has just won an impressive 4 Great Taste Awards. The winning products, Pandora Bell Smoked Sweet Liquorice were described as having “a delightful depth of liquorice flavour”, the judges stated that Pandora Bell Fruit Jellies with 70% Fruit Pulp has “intense and compelling flavours”, Pandora Bell Salted Butter Caramels with Fleur de Sel was a huge hit and Pandora Bell: Coffee Nougat with Hazelnuts in a Chocolate Coating was described “The texture of the filling is delightful, with a lovely soft base contrasting with beautifully roasted crunchy nuts”. All four were winners of The Guild of Fine Food Great Taste Awards that took place in London this week.
Pandora Bell is run by Limerick woman Nicole Dunphy, Nicole who walked away from a pensionable job in RTE to fulfil her childhood dream to become a confectionery queen.
The confectionery tradition in the Dunphy family dates back to her Grand-aunt Dora. Dora had nearly a century before, started the Pandora Bell project: a noble pursuit thwarted by war and eventually restored by the indefatigable entrepreneurship of Nicole.
Pandora Bell, the fictional heroine, belongs to the Belle époque, that glorious hiatus between wars, when Europe flourished. It is at this time when Pandora Bell, as we will now refer to Nicole’s Grand-aunt, travelled Europe in search of both adventures and the best quality confectionery the world had to offer.
This is a story of full circles: it started in the Limerick train station in 1928, with a young Pandora Bell perched aboard a steam train; and came to fruition in 2008, with the creation of Pandora Bell, at the outskirts of the Georgian City of Limerick, where the best confectionery of Europe is fashioned.
The circle may have been closed, but in the adventurous ethos in which the company was set, they continue to tie knots by endlessly searching for more sweet inspiration. Working closely with the best artisans in Europe, who still produce their confectionery as if not a single day had passed between that first steam train journey taken by Pandora Bell and today.
The Guild of Fine Food Awards, Great Taste is the world’s largest and most trusted food and drink awards, putting food or drink to the test with a panel of over 500 experts is a quick way to get honest, straightforward and impartial feedback from chefs, buyers, food writers and retailers. Great Taste stars are highly respected seals of approval. The Guild supports and promotes speciality food producers and the independent delis, farm shops and food halls that sustain them. Backed by 1,300 members, it runs the influential Great Taste and World Cheese Awards.
Get your hands on some of their delicious goods.
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