Chef nominated for best wedding caterer of the year in the UK

Country Box Catering - a wedding catering business based in Wymondham - has been nominated for a national award.

Country Box Catering - a wedding catering business based in Wymondham - has been nominated for a national award. - Credit: Sophie Gomez

A Norfolk business named wedding caterer of the year in the East of England is now up for the same award on a national scale.

Country Box Catering, which promises to give brides and grooms a personalised experience with “incredible” food, has been recognised at The Wedding Industry Awards. 

It is owned by chef Wayne Harvey and his partner Sophie Gomez, from Wymondham, who first launched the business in a converted horse box selling street food in 2016. 

Country Box Catering - a wedding catering business based in Wymondham - has been nominated for a national award.

Country Box Catering - a wedding catering business based in Wymondham - has been nominated for a national award. - Credit: Sophie Gomez

Then in 2019 the couple decided to turn their focus to sit-down weddings - until the coronavirus pandemic arrived. 

Ms Gomez said: “We started the business because we had been to a few weddings and we thought, ‘we can do this, but better’. 

“Wayne has been a chef for about 18 years and he is incredible. The flavour he packs into his food is amazing. 

“We started as a street food vendor but turned to wedding catering in 2019. But then Covid came.” 

Country Box Catering - a wedding catering business based in Wymondham - has been nominated for a national award.

Country Box Catering - a wedding catering business based in Wymondham - has been nominated for a national award. - Credit: Sophie Gomez

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Like many businesses during this time, the couple took a massive hit as weddings were forced to cancel.  

In order to stay afloat, they decided to purchase another horse box and created Boxed Burgers - a pop-up food business.

When restrictions eventually lifted in July last year, just six of their originally planned weddings went ahead. 

Country Box Catering - a wedding catering business based in Wymondham - has been nominated for a national award.

Country Box Catering - a wedding catering business based in Wymondham - has been nominated for a national award. - Credit: Sophie Gomez

After a difficult year for the business, Ms Gomez said they did not expect to be nominated at The Wedding Industry Awards. 

At a ceremony held in Norfolk, on Wednesday, January 19, they were given the title of wedding caterer of the year in the East of England. 

They were also named as one of eight finalists for the national award ceremony which set to be held in London in February. 

The 30-year-old said: “I'm really proud of what we have achieved.

“It has been difficult. In lockdown we lost 100pc of our revenue so we really had to think on our feet and adapt. 

Country Box Catering - a wedding catering business based in Wymondham - has been nominated for a national award.

Country Box Catering - a wedding catering business based in Wymondham - has been nominated for a national award. It is owned by Wayne Harvey and his partner Sophie Gomez. - Credit: Sophie Gomez

“We are definitely not the biggest wedding caterer and we don’t want to be.  

“Wayne and I just want to grow organically, so we can make sure that the brides and grooms get the day they deserve.

“We feel privileged and honoured to be chosen to be part of someone’s special day.” 

Country Box Catering - which includes Boxed Burgers - is also available for hire for private dining.

Country Box Catering - a wedding catering business based in Wymondham - has been nominated for a national award.

Country Box Catering - a wedding catering business based in Wymondham - has been nominated for a national award. It is owned by Wayne Harvey and his partner Sophie Gomez. - Credit: Sophie Gomez