Australian Food Awards 2018

Congratulations to everyone who entered the fifth Australian Food Awards Fresh Garlic Competition. There were 28 entries in total and some really beautiful, high quality garlic. Many AGIA members were included amongst the medal winners. The winners are listed below, just click on Read more below right. There is also a report of how the judging took place and what the judges were looking for.











BIC40S - Best Garlic (Best In Class Medals\Produce)
6028 Gold   Fleurieu Red
Fleurieu Garlic, South Australia

Other medal winners

2261 Gold   Spanish Roja
Wildes Lane, Victoria
6028 Gold   Fleurieu Red
Fleurieu Garlic, South Australia
6067 Gold   Wilde Ruby
Wildes Lane, Victoria
7859 Gold   Harmony Garlic
Harmony Garlic, Victoria
1044 Silver   Hillston Garlic Rio Red
Agrico Produce Pty Ltd, New South Wales
2953 Silver   Mirboo Farm Rojo de Castro
Garden Seasons (T/as Mirboo Farm), Victoria
3260 Silver   Cottonwoods Organic garlic
Cottonwoods Organics, Victoria
4146 Silver   Hilltop Garlic
Prentice Pastures Family Trust T/A Hilltop Garlic, Victoria
5051 Silver   Just Aus Garlic
Just Aus Garlic, Queensland
7140 Silver   Tarrawingee Garlic
Tarrawingee Garlic, Victoria
7194 Silver   Coastwinds Farm purple garlic
Coastwinds Farm, Western Australia
7214 Silver   Harmony Garlic
Harmony Garlic, Victoria
3207 Bronze   Tarrawingee Garlic
Tarrawingee Garlic, Victoria
4808 Bronze   Hunter Valley Produce - Cedar Creek Monaro Purple
Hunter Valley Produce, New South Wales
5002 Bronze   Big dam farm
Big Dam Farm, Tasmania


9119 Gold   Grownbyme
Grown By me, Victoria
5101 Silver   Grownbyme
Grown By me, Victoria
1607 Bronze   Freshwater Creek Garlic
Freshwater Creek Garlic, Victoria

The Judging

Each entry was judged on its own. So they were not ranked in comparison to any other garlic. We had three judges this year, one chefs and two garlic experts. The Judges awarded points as follows. All entries were scored out of 100. With 20 points allocated to uniformity of bulbs and cloves (shape, size, colour). 20 points to condition of bulb and cloves (freshness, cleanliness, physical condition). 10 points to quality (firmness, true to varietal type). 10 points to aroma. 40 points to taste (made up of 20 points to raw taste and 20 points to baked taste).

The medal range is Gold 90-100, Silver 82-89, Bronze 74-81

The garlic was unpacked by the Australian Food Awards staff and was identified by numbers only, so it was not possible for the judges to know who grew the garlic or have any idea as to what region or state it came from. They also did not know which were the organic entries and which were the conventionally farmed entries.

The judges started judging just after 9.00 am and finished just after 3.00pm. Each entry was approached in the same way. The bulbs were inspected closely for plumpness and strength of skins, one bulb was then pulled apart and the cloves, clove bases and skins looked at. Several cloves were then peeled and the flesh of each clove inspected. Another bulb was cut in half and the plumpness and tightness of the cloves and clove skins observed. If during this process disease of other problems were noted then another bulb was requested to see if the problem was more widespread. Where the Garlic Group was entered as unknown the judges tried to indicate what Group they thought the garlic belonged to.

They then testing the aroma and flavour of the raw garlic. Each entry had a clove cut into several slices. The slices were left for a short period to ensure that the chemical changes had time to happen and the allicin to be released. In this case the garlic was not actually swallowed, just chewed, assessed to allow flavour to develop and removed. The judges found that the most effective palette cleansers were blueberries, bread, and apple slices with plenty of water to wash out the mouth between tastings. Individual scores were recorded by each judge, but only one wrote down the more extensive agreed comments. This year we tried to convey the flavours and characteristics of the garlics we were tasting in the hope that this might help growers with their descriptions and marketing.

Once this procedure was completed for every entry we then stopped for lunch. After lunch the judges then went back to the beginning and starting with the first entry again, tasting the baked flesh of the cloves. These had been prepared by one of the excellent Australian Food Awards chefs, with all bulbs cooked in the same way for the same length of time. Scores and comments were again recorded and we again tried to convey the flavours and aromas of each sample. Most of us found that lemon sorbet was a better palette cleanser for the baked garlic.

At the end, the individual scores for each garlic were tallied by the RMFFA staff and it was only at this point that it became clear which garlics had won gold, silver and bronze medals. But the judges still didn’t know who the actual winners were because the garlic was still only identified by numbers. The Champion garlic was the garlic with the highest score across all categories. Judges  had to wait until the results had been publicly released to know who had won medals and who had grown the champion garlic.

As always we would be very happy to accept feedback about the process either through the AGIA website, or on the Fine Food Awards website at

I was one of the Judges, along with Trevor Gray and Sui Ling Hui. It was a privilege to serve the Garlic Industry in this way, but it was also a very long day and it was a couple of days before I was able to consider eating garlic again! It is very encouraging though that so much beautiful garlic is being grown all over Australia.

Penny Woodward