THE choice of excellent places to eat and drink has greatly improved in Hereford during the last five years.

And the Hotel, Restaurant, Pub or Café of the Year award celebrates the HBID members who are making a difference to the food and drink scene.

This award will go to the hotel, restaurant, pub or café which has significantly increased its performance or potential in the latest financial year. The size and age of the business are relevant and will be considered against its performance.

The finalists are: The Beefy Boys; Burger Shop Hereford and The Bookshop; and The Kup-cake Kitchen Cafe.

The Beefy Boys was started by four friends, Lee Symonds, Anthony Murphy, Christian Williams and Daniel Mayo-Evans, four years ago when a drunken barbecue got out of hand.

After experimenting on friends and family The Beefy Boys took their burgers and barbecue to Bristol food festival, Grillstock, where they won the title of UK's Best Burger. They then travelled to Las Vegas in 2014 to compete in The World Burger Championships, where the boys took the title of second Best Burger in The World.

After winning that, the boys quit their job and ran a series of sell-out pop-up events before launching their first restaurant, The Meat Boutique at the Old Market Shopping Centre. Despite being surrounded by national chains, The Beefy Boys quickly became the busiest restaurant at the centre and has quickly risen to the number one restaurant in Hereford on TripAdvisor.

Founded from the desire to make and serve delicious food every day, A Rule of Tum began in 2013 as the passion project of a few Herefordians, Edwin Kirk, Dorian Kirk, and Jonathan Stead.

They now have two restaurants operating in Aubrey Street in Hereford- Burger Shop and The Bookshop Steak + Bar- and a third in Worcester (Burger Shop) and currently employ more than 50 people.

They take great pride in having the privilege of working directly with the farmers, butchers, producers, etc. who make this beautiful county of Herefordshire what it is.

The best seasonal, local ingredients are used to create burgers at The Burger Shop and The Bookshop serves a concise steak menu Thursday to Saturday using grass-fed, dry-aged Herefordshire beef, along with other dishes focused on seasonality and sustainability. They also serve a Sunday lunch.

The Kup-cake Kitchen Cafe in Union Street is the very first cupcake, coffee and champagne boutique in the whole of Herefordshire and run and owned by Valencia Simpson.

With everything being baked on site in just two ovens, with a team of just three untrained bakers/cake decorators working part time and alternate shifts, who not only stock the shelves while serving, cleaning, and mowing the lawn, but who also make wedding and all kinds of occasion cakes in between.

They also run cupcake courses and parties for all age groups. The cafe has been mentioned as producing the best cupcakes and scones ever, bringing people into Hereford from afar to visit the shop and try the cupcakes and cakes for themselves.