"The way curry is loved by everyone is a great example of our whole country coming together."
The 10th British Curry Awards took place on the Monday 1st December 2014 at the Battersea Evolution.
Widely considered to be the biggest event in the British hospitality calendar, the British Curry Awards brought together industry personnel, foodies, celebrities, MPs, and dignitaries from all around the UK.
Celebrating the £3.6 billion British curry industry, the prestigious awards ceremony was certainly a night to remember.
Singer Navin Kundra took to the stage with a special performance and Kate Silverton entranced the guests as hostess for the evening.
Kicking of the evening, Prime Minister David Cameron gave a speech to the audience, via video message: “Britain’s curry industry is not just a great example of the incredible contribution of our Asian communities.
“The way curry is loved by everyone is a great example of our whole country coming together.”Home Secretary Theresa May, dressed in a sparkly peacock blue Indian outfit, was the guest of honour. In her speech, she said:
“The success of the British curry industry is about much more than your tremendous economic contribution to this country.”
She added: “It’s about the way you’ve become so much a part of the British way of life. Your businesses are as much loved and familiar as the local pub.”
The founder of the Awards, Enam Ali, said at the event: “I thought we would like to recognise the unsung heroes. They’ve done so much for this country to change the public perception of the curry. And I thought we haven’t got anybody to say, ‘Thank you. You’ve done well!'”
“I started in 2005. Now it’s become so big. It’s become the Oscars of the curry industry. Curry may be born in India. We’re making it ‘Great’ in Britain.”
Among the 1700 to 1800 guests were news reporters Rageh Omaar and Krishnan Guru-Murthy, comedian Hardeep Kohli, Italian-British lawyer Nancy Dell’Olio, former England goalkeeper David Seaman, radio presenter Nihal and Adil Ray.
Of course being at the British Curry Awards meant that the food had to be nothing less than impeccable. Guests, nominees and friends enjoyed servings of tandoori salmon, methi chicken and lamb biryani. For dessert, they had badam kulfi, gajar ka halwa, and rasmalai.
Big winners of the night included Shams Uddin Khan, who took the ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’. ‘Best Delivery’ went to The Chilli Pickle, while ‘Best in London Central and City’ went to the deliciously appetising Cinnamon Club.
Five Rivers A La Carte, took the award for ‘Newcomer of the Year’. Accepting the award, Kindi Summer said:
“There’s a lot more to come, I promise you that. It’s 10 years for the British Curry Awards, it’s 10 years for us as well, so the chef’s got a lot of big plans for the next 10 year coming up.”
Shampan, who won the ‘Best in London Suburbs’, said: “You build a family and not a team. And when you can build a family in a business, the world’s your oyster.”
Dishoom, the winners of the prize for ‘Best Casual Dining’, added: “Casual dining is when you go out whenever you feel like it. It is not fine dining. It’s not quick service. It’s the kind of experience anyone can enjoy whether it’s lunch, or evening, or weekend, or daytime, morning.”
Here is a full list of the winners of the British Curry Awards 2014:
Best in London Central and City
The Cinnamon Club
Best in London Suburbs
Shampan 3 Welling
Best in South East
Best in South West
Best in North East
Best in North West
Best in Midlands
Mem Saab, Nottingham
Best in Wales
Rasoi Indian Kitchen
Best in Scotland
Light of Bengal
Best Casual Dining
Dishoom Covent Garden
Newcomer of the Year
Five Rivers A La Carte
The Chilli Pickle
Shams Uddin Khan
The British Curry Awards 2014 truly recognise the achievement of those involved in making the curry such a celebrated dish in Britain. With 10 years under its wing, the awards is certainly one of the main highlights of every food lovers calendar. Congratulations to all of the winners!