Bengal Spices is Welsh Curry House of the Year 2013

23 April 2013

The Festivals Company is proud to announce that Bengal Spices from Llanymynech in Powys has been crowned Welsh Curry House of the Year 2013. The announcement was made by Chef Anand George at the glittering Awards Show at The Coal Exchange, Cardiff Bay on Monday 22 April 2013.

This was the second year for the Powys based restaurant to reach the final stage of the competition having been named best restaurant in Mid and West Wales in 2012.

“We were impressed by the warm welcome we received from the staff at the Bengal Spices. This small cottage has been transformed into a colourful haven serving traditional Bangladeshi food to a grateful and loyal rural community. The commitment of the owner to deliver tasty quality food in such a rural location is something we believe should be celebrated,” said Niaz Taj, the Jury Chair.

“The competition was very tough this year. The jury, for the first time in the history of the competition were unable to agree unanimously on a winner the first time round and were asked to retire over the weekend to consider. I’m very grateful to the Jury Chair Niaz Taj and his fellow jury members for all their hard work and more importantly for eventually reaching a decision,” said Berwyn Rowlands from the Festivals Company who produce the annual competition.

Commenting on the other regional winners, Niaz Taj said:

Rasoi Indian Kitchen (South Wales Winner): “South Wales’ premiership status is further enhanced by the arrival of the Rasoi Indian Kitchen. This is a young, energetic and sophisticated restaurant that brings authentic Indian flavours into the Swansea area.”

Rasoi Indian Kitchen (Best Design): “The design of the Rasoi extends well beyond the traditional elements of logo, menus, adverts and website. The restaurant is an example of modern design which is vibrant and contemporary and extends into the kitchen and workplaces making it a beautiful place for the staff and customers.”

Maahis (North Wales Winner): “One of the best Welsh Lamb dishes we tasted during our tour of Wales was at the Maahis, we would encourage everybody who loves lamb to try this dish. The people of Wrexham are obviously very proud of the Maahis as was demonstrated when we visited a full restaurant on a Monday evening”

“The competition is committed to celebrating the fine work of the 280 Indian restaurants we have in Wales. We are also committed to encourage the sector to use more locally sourced Welsh ingredients like Welsh Lamb. The response to the Welsh Lamb Curry dish which was offered in the top 30 restaurants confirmed a demand by the public for food using locally sourced ingredients. We would like to see such ingredients become a permanent part of menus in restaurants all over Wales,” said Berwyn Rowlands from the Festivals Company.

The judges who were tasked with choosing the National Winner were:

Niaz Taj is the Jury Chair and Owner of Katiwok.
Anand George, winner of the competition in 2012 from the Purple Poppadom in Cardiff.
Bonny Young from London returns as a judge having travelled extensively in India.
Sirajul Islam returns as a judge having spent 40 years in the Indian Restaurant sector.

A total of five awards were presented during the evening and the winners were:

Bengal Spices, Ashfield House, Llanymynech. SY22 6ER  (NATIONAL  WINNER)
Maahis , Ruabon by pass, Wrexham, LL14 6YY. (NORTH WALES WINNER)
Bengal Spices, Ashfield House, Llanymynech. SY22 6ER (MID WALES WINNER)
Rasoi Indian Kitchen, Bryntirion Road, SWANSEA, SA4 9DY. (SOUTH WALES WINNER)
Rasoi Indian Kitchen, Bryntirion Road, SWANSEA, SA4 9DY. (BEST DESIGN)