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Regular Square Meal readers will know how important our ‘Be the Critic’ competition is to us. We value the reviews and comments posted on SquareMeal.co.uk by our users very highly, firstly because they bring together an online community of like-minded people who can steer each other towards the right restaurants, and also because the on-the-ground information and insights they provide help inform our annual restaurant write-ups for Square Meal Restaurants & Bars guide.
Over the years, we’ve provided luxury prizes both to regular users of SquareMeal.co.uk who have posted outstanding restaurant reviews, and to newcomers getting in on the act with a quick comment. Last year alone, in return for their comments, lucky Square Meal readers won spa breaks, weekend getaways, dinners for two, luxury spirits and bottles of Champagne as part of our free monthly prize draw. Meanwhile, three winners were named Critic of the Quarter and each treated to a £250 meal – at The Ledbury, Tom Aikens and Viajante. The end of the year saw Grumbling Gourmet bag the top prize of a weekend break at South Lodge Hotel in West Sussex, including a meal at Michelin-starred restaurant The Pass, plus, of course, the coveted title of Amateur Critic of the Year.
New for 2013, we’ve reinvigorated the online ‘rate and review’ pages, making it easier than ever for you to rate restaurants you’ve visited, post comments, and read the latest reviews left by other ‘real people’, which you can filter to suit your needs.
Now that the site has been polished and our stock of prizes has been generously replenished, we’re delighted to introduce our new sponsor and tell you about the exciting plans they have lined up for 2013...
We are thrilled that the ‘Be the Critic’ competition has a new partner in Nespresso – a brand synonymous with highest-quality premium coffee. A perfect cup of coffee is an integral part of any restaurant experience, and a daily ritual for many of us, and that’s why we’re delighted Nespresso is supporting this year’s competition.
Over the years, Nespresso’s dedication to delivering the highest-quality coffee to their customers, cup after cup, has revolutionised the way millions of people enjoy their coffee, and has shaped global coffee culture. Nespresso’s state-of-the-art machines and wide selection of exceptional ‘Grand Cru’ blends made with pure, single-origin beans continue to position Nespresso as a favourite with gourmets who really know their stuff.
Nespresso can be found in more than 240 of the UK’s top restaurants, including Michelin-starred destinations. At home, the Nespresso Club enhances its members’ coffee experience, with deliveries of Nespresso capsules at their convenience, coffee news and invitations to exclusive events at its global boutiques. In short, Nespresso is the last word in quality and luxury for many of the world’s most discerning contemporary coffee drinkers.
In 2013, as part of its sponsorship, Nespresso will award its newest coffee machine, U (pictured, left; RRP £119), to the spring, summer and autumn winners of the Critic of the Quarter prize – that’s in addition to the traditional prize of a £250 meal at a restaurant of their choice. Combining sleek, elegant design with the ultimate blend of functionality and style; its minimalist and contemporary look fits neatly into any living space. With simple, user-friendly settings, the latest machine from Nespresso allows you to create the perfect cup of restaurant-quality coffee, with which to start or end the day, and it is available in four stylish colours.
What’s more, our friends at Nespresso are lining up an exclusive event for Square Meal readers at Nespresso’s Regent Street boutique. Guests will learn how to appreciate and taste coffee like the professionals, find out more about the origins of coffee and Nespresso’s expertise within the industry, and discover the perfect cup of coffee to suit their palate.
Plus, expect the gourmet meals out, luxury trips and bottles of fizz to continue this year – as well as the ‘Be the Critic’ competition’s grand prize, a weekend away with all the trimmings at a luxury UK hotel, which will be awarded to our Amateur Critic of the Year 2013. Just leave a comment on SquareMeal.co.uk to be in with a chance of winning.
Square Meal would like to give a warm welcome to our new sponsorship partner Nespresso. Find out more about Nespresso and how to become a Nespresso Club member at nespresso.com