Blogger’s Choice Award Recipients. L-R: Borenos Team with YB Datuk Seri Panglima Masidi Manjun, Mr.Munish from Little Melaka with Datuk Gordon Leong and Sakagura Team with Rory Richardson, Datuk Gordon Leong and YB Datuk Seri Panglima Masidi Manjun.
The Blogger’s Choice Award is not to be confused with the other awards (Best Signature Menu, Best Plate Presentation, Best Ambiance, Best Customer Service, Outstanding Chef, MoreFun Award, Facebook Popular and Best Consistent Award) as these awards have different and specific criteria being look into by the judges and organizer. Blogger’s Choice Award do have other specific criteria during the judging process, as listed below.
In any food competition, winning means higher recognition for the participants. Put together 12 Signature Dishes and the panel of judges will surely be scratching their head while choosing the winner. That was our experience as Blogger’s Judges in The Signature Food Fest 2017 organized by Eleventh Avenue Media Marketing. There were 12 amazing signature dishes presented by 12 eateries.
The Judges for Blogger’s Choice Award, Signature Food Fest 2017 (L-R: Alfred Allen, Johairie and Lan)
While there were other awards given during the Award Night (Click HERE), the appointed bloggers were given task to pick 3 dishes out of 12 Signature Dishes presented in the competition. We did our job and it was a unanimous decision. Though we had to go through the details for long hours, we came to the final decision, with all three of us agreeing to the overall result.
For the benefit of future participants (in any food competition), we listed below the winning factors that sided the three chosen signature dishes. It is about how we picked the winners from the total 12 Signature Dishes and to explain why we chose the 3 winners over the other 9 dishes. It was not an easy process picking the 3 winners; as all 12 dishes were superb in taste and presentation.
The chosen 3 winners for Blogger’s Choice Award
L-R: Full Spring Chicken by Borenos Fried Chicken, Asam Pedas/Fish Head Curry by Little Melaka Alamesra and Sukiyaki with Special Wagyu by Sakagura Japanese Restaurant
All 3 dishes shared the same winning factors. The detailed evaluation during discussion by the three judges were based on these factors:
i-Editorial Perspective-Aesthetic Factor
We are writers. We write about things in blog. When we write, there will be readers. Readers are our esteemed Followers. It means only one thing, we write for our readers. Whatever we recommend, choose or highlight will be our responsibility, social obligation of ours for our readers.
When we choose something for our readers, it means we are confident in our decision. That confidence comes from our belief that our readers will be happy to read it. If we wrongly recommend something, we will have to accept the blame. When we drafted an article, there will be an editor.
This editor’s job is to look at the style and content of an article before approving it. He or she will then be assumed carrying the responsibility for the entire content of publication. He or she will think of the Target Audience for a specific article. Apart from all those technical factors (language, readability, suitability of content and many more), the editor will look into the aesthetic value.
Aesthetic Value is one hidden observation. Editors or writers secretly look at things, visually but objectively. Aesthetic does not solely or necessarily focus on the beauty of a subject. Aesthetic Value in the eyes of an editor refers to the ‘beauty’ of such content that he or she is about to approve. That ‘beauty’ will always be related to the target audience. The editor will be able to forecast if the readers or audience will be happy with the ‘beauty’ of such content.
In regard to Signature Food Fest 2017, all three of us are writers and are responsible for our own writings, we are editors to our own contents. When we were given the task to choose 3 winners for blogger’s choice award, we were automatically in the ‘editor’s’ mode.
We were given the liberty to choose the best 3 of 12 dishes. We are then to recommend those 3 dishes in our writings to our target audience. Hence, ‘beauty’ played its role. By doing this, it does not mean that the other 9 dishes were not ‘beautiful’. All 12 dishes were presented beautifully.
The best 3 dishes however surpassed the other 9 dishes as we really believe, from the perspective of editors, that these 3 dishes will look amazing for our target audience. For future participating eateries in any food competition (Especially if there are judges from Media representatives), how would you ensure that you prepare the best dishes?
Choose the right Dish and be smart and consistent in presentation-visually and verbally. Editors or writers are the judges who normally comes with ‘equipment’ a.k.a their cameras and most importantly, brain. Their brain recorded all the information, presented verbally by the eateries representative’s. Whatever being said by participants will stick in their brains for quite a long time. Memorizing is part of their job.
They will then take many pictures, in hundred frames. That is their job as they will later have to re-produce the whole thing in a form of an article or in high-resolution image, to be later presented to their target audience. They will choose the best one for their Target Audience.
Full Spring Chicken by Borenos Fried Chicken
For Borenos, the keyword in its product ‘beauty’ was the repeated word of ‘freshness’. They repeated the word so many times that it went inside our brain, embedded like forever. True to their saying, the product is fresh! It’s not only tasty but it’s fresh. That freshness, was the key for their success. We believe in that as we’ve tasted the product. We believe that ‘freshness’ inside the product, goes well with our readers.
In the case of Little Melaka, they took the initiative to efficiently and beautifully presented the rice and condiments on banana leaf. It left deep visual impact for the judges. Everyone can do this but for the competition, it was them who cleverly chose the right Signature Dish in the most beautiful presentation. The Asam Pedas and Fish Head Curry were presented in normal platters but with careful thoughts, to ensure it looks beautiful, visually and easily understood when the explanation were verbally delivered.
Japanese Cuisine concentrates on two things. Quality and Service. For Sakagura Japanese Restaurant, they beautifully presented to the judges their amazing Sukiyaki with Special Wagyu. The aesthetic value that we believe our readers will love our recommendation was based on the the way Sakagura presented the dish. There were steps in presentation as in many Japanese Cuisine. The elements were not only beautiful and fresh but it looks so great in images. The images produced that confidence among us as Editors and Writers, that it somehow made us bravely put forward the recommendation for our readers.
Reality bites, people don’t always eat with their eyes first. Having said that, the subjectivity of ‘Beauty’ as in the said aesthetic factor, was not the sole criteria during the judging process for Blogger’s Choice Award. We had to consider another factor, namely the ‘Real Values’ that will be received by future customers, with some of them are our readers, our Target Audience.
ii-Values for our Readers/Followers a.k.a Future Customers
While editors and writers do give priority to the aesthetic value in their contents, they will also be looking into the the real values that will be benefiting the readers a.k.a Target Audience. They believe that in long run, the readers will benefit most, specifically in regard to Price. Another important factors are Quality (Food-Taste and Presentation), Ambiance and Service.
All three chosen eateries managed to get our attention as blogger’s judges in these 4 values; Price, Quality, Ambiance and Service. These 4 values are important for our readers a.k.a Target Audience. Apart from aesthetic factor, we judged based on these 4 values. We had to become ‘customers’ during the judging process, which means we applied real customers thoughts into our thinking mode. We believe that Borenos, Little Melaka and Sakagura products are perfect for our Target Audience.
Borenos, Little Melaka and Sakagura presented their signature dishes that perfectly matched all those 4 values. We are confident that our Target Audience will be comfortable with the products offered by the 3 mentioned brands. These 3 brands surpassed all other 9 brands (with reference to their signature dishes, not overall menu). It is important to mention here that we were judging based on the Signature Dishes presented to us and NOT on the overall Menu.
Price is important when dining out of home. Regardless budget, customers always wanted to receive something that is equal to what they are about to pay. Having said that, majority customers don’t dine in at high-end restaurant on daily basis. Majority are looking forward to find something that is affordable. If somehow big budget becomes a requirement, customers will want to ensure that they eat something that is parallel to the overall quality shown on their plate(s).
Reasonably Priced & accordingly
The price(s)-not that too high, affordable by us and to the others (readers/future customers). If it’s a bit high as served in high-end eateries by any means, we or other customers must be ensured to receive food that is of high quality.
Quality can be defined as “The distinctive trait, characteristic, capacity or virtue of a product that sets it apart from all others.”(Marie Ferree, February 1973). When we eat, we keep thinking of quality. It does not matter if that food we are about to eat is from a roadside stall or one grand restaurant.
Customers will always judge an eatery based on the food served to them; the overall quality, especially in terms of taste and presentation. The way food tastes, ranks high on the family and institutional food buyer’s list of quality standards (Marie Ferree, February 1973). Again, it does not matter if that food is from a roadside stall or 7-star restaurant. What count is, the customers ably to be satisfied with what they see and taste.
According to Fantastic Man Magazine (Link),
“Diners go for the full experience, not just for the food itself. They want to be treated and feel special, and the ambiance of an establishment most certainly contributes to these feelings. Great ambiance will allow diners to look around and enjoy themselves, and maybe even stay longer than they planned, simply because they want to soak in the atmosphere of the place.”
“If an ambiance match a product, diners will feel more at home and relaxed while they dine. When paired with fine food, the right atmosphere will have customers enjoying themselves more, and consequently, enjoying the food more as well.”
The term Service is equally important to the food overall quality and price(s). Give one great food, with detailed attention to its presentation and taste but ask the waiter/waitress to serve it with the most annoying attitude. That customer will surely not be coming again.
Customer service is the assistance and advice you provide to your diners. Customer service is equal parts communication and genuine attention to your diners.When guests visit your restaurant, you want them to feel welcome. When you treat them with care and respect while providing an excellent meal, they’ll come back to your restaurant again and again (restaurantengine.com, 2015 January 12)
Delivering satisfactory customer service is the most important aspect of managing service quality within hospitality firms as well (Butcher, Sparks et al. 2009).
Simply put, if we are being questioned for our decision, we are confident in countering any attacks as we have already think deeply and wisely as to why we chose the 3 dishes mentioned above. We, as Editors and Writers, are 100% sure that we chose the right Signature Dishes as the recipients for Blogger’s Choice Award- The Signature Food Fest 2017. We have discussed in details all important issues or elements.
We however do regard all 12 dishes were amazing, delicious and beautifully presented. All 12 eateries tried their very best in presenting amazing Signature Dishes. It is a norm in any kind of competition that someone must emerge as the winner. In this case, there were 3 winners.
With specific reference to Blogger’s Choice Award for The Signature Food Fest 2017, the Signature Dishes by Borenos, Little Melaka and Sakagura are the best of the best. Their products are great in the eyes of bloggers, writers and editors. Their products best suited our Target Audience.
In terms of aesthetic, price, quality, ambiance and service, these 3 Signature Dishes surpassed the other 9 dishes. In average, or shall we say by looking at the overall criteria, the 3 winners scored high. While there were two other dishes (from the non winners list) that pretty much amazed us in terms of taste and presentation, they did not perform well in the service part. The same goes to the other non winners, they lacked of something.
Alfred Allen-Editor and Writer for mejarasakk.blogspot.com
Joehairie-Chief Editor for curiostraveller.com
Lan-Editor and Writer for curiostraveller.com
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