British Curry Awards 2012

The biggest event in the curry calendar, The British Curry Awards 2012, took place on Monday the 26th November for the 8th time. Congratulations to all of the winners who are listed below.

The annual event is now a regular for many well known celebrities, as well as over 1500 industry guests from all over the UK. There was a video message from David Cameron and a written note from The Queen giving some indication of the importance the trade has on the UK’s economy and culture.

Taking place in Battersea’s Evolution venue the setting, decor, entertainment and organisation were generally very good and the organisers did a great job keeping things moving which is always tricky at events like these. In this they were aided by hosts Rory Bremner who was suitably scathing and Jennie Bond who raised the standards. Even Nigel Farage from UKIP put in an appearance which was a bit of a shock.

We enjoyed the night and many of the restaurants who won looked worthy of a visit but we do have a couple of moans though. Firstly – the food was terrible, which is a shame for a food industry event. We realise it’s almost impossible to please 1500 chefs and front of house staff from your own industry – but come on guys this was served cold and was pretty bland. The staff however were excellent so please don’t think we are aiming any criticism at them.

Secondly we learned that Indian restaurants shouldn’t make promotional videos – each category’s nominees were asked to send in a video which was shown before the winner was announced. Having now seen around 50 such videos they all blended in to one long stream of “authentic cuisine”, “finest ingredients” and “not available anywhere else” coupled with shots of chefs flaming their pans in the kitchen. I was ready to shoot myself.

Also as a cry from the North – we heard from multiple speakers about the importance of the Bangladeshi and Indian communities to the Curry Industry and the UK in general. However I don’t think I heard one mention of Pakistan which is a bit odd given the number of curry restaurants in the UK who draw their inspiration from that part of the world. Time to recognise the whole industry chaps, you are missing a trick.

Anyway no more ranting,  here are some photos of the evening:

And here are the winners of the British Curry Awards 2012

  • Best Delivery Restaurant/Take-away – Mushtaqs (Hamilton, Lanarkshire)
  • Best Restaurant in Scotland – Taj Indian (Prestwick)
  • Best Restaurant in the  North East – Aagrah (Leeds)
  • Best Restaurant in the North West – Indian Ocean (Ashton-under-Lyne)
  • Best Restaurant in the Midlands – Itihaas (Birmingham)
  • Best Newcomer Restaurant in the Midlands – Fiver Rivers A La Carte (Walsall)
  • Best Restaurant in Wales – Rasoi Indian Kitchen (Swansea)
  • Best Restaurant in the South East – Haweli Indian Restaurant (Twyford, Berkshire)
  • Best Newcomer in the South East – Shampan 4 – The Spinning Wheel (Westerham, Kent)
  • Best Restaurant in the South West – Spice Lodge (Cheltenham)
  • Best Newcomer in the South West – The Mint Room (Yeovil, Somerset)
  • Best Restaurant in Central London & City – Bombay Palace (Paddington)
  • Best Newcomer in Central London & City – Chakra (Notting Hill)
  • Best Restaurant in the London Suburbs – Chak 89 (Surrey)
  • Best in Casual Dining – The Chilli Pickle (Brighton, East Sussex)
  • Special Inspiration Award – Dipna Anand of Brilliant Restaurant

If you happen to visit any of these please let us know what you think.

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Roving Reporter

Our roving reporter in the North of England.

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