Up against some of the finest eateries the UK has to offer, the popular Liverpool venue was one of just 12 to pick up an honour at a star-studded gala in London on Monday night - where even prime minister Rishi Sunak made an appearance.
The Best Restaurant North West award went to Mowgli Street Food, which has outlets on Bold Street and Water Street in the city centre. ‘Curry evangelist’ Nisha Katona opened Mowgli on Bold Street in 2014 and now has restaurants all over the country, which offer ‘simple dishes that are a million miles away from the curry stereotype’.
Reacting on Instagram, she said: “So proud of my team of Operations Chefs and Supertasters who represented our Liverpool born endeavour last night. They trek the country tirelessly making sure Mowgli stays true to my Indian home kitchen roots. We can never be everyones cup of tea and we are only as good as our last home spun curry. But this array of progressively blurred and happy faces care so much about your experience. So CONGRATULATIONS to all my Mowgli chefs who are at our hobs at dawn cooking their noble hearts out - this is for you 💪🏾”
Prime minister Sunak hailed the UK curry industry for ‘filling our high streets and our homes with some of the best curry in the world’ in a video message of support to those gathered at the awards ceremony.
The other award winners, from throughout the rest of the UK are:
- Best Restaurant North East: Khai Khai Indian Restaurant, Newcastle
- Best Restaurant North West: Mowgli Street Food Liverpool
- Best Restaurant East Midlands: Calcutta Club Restaurant, Nottingham
- Best Restaurant West Midlands: Lasan, Birmingham
- Best Restaurant Wales: Purple Poppadom, Cardiff
- Best Restaurant South East: Shampan at the Spinning Wheel, Westerham, Kent
- Best Restaurant South West: Prithvi Restaurant, Cheltenham
- Best Restaurant London Central & City: Benares, Mayfair
- Best Restaurant London Suburbs: Copper Ceylon, Bromley
- Best Takeaway: Maliks Express Kitchen, Gerrads Cross
- Best Newcomer: Colonel Saab, Holborn
- Diners’ Choice Award was: Urban Tandoor, Bristol.
Nominations fro the awards are made by curry house patrons up and down the county, before they are rigorously vetted by an independent panel of judges.
In attendance at Monday night’s awards ceremony at Evolution London in Battersea Park were: TV personalities, Chris Tarrant, Nadia Essex (Celebs Go Dating), Dr Ranj Singh; Merlin Griffiths (C4’s First Dates), Hayley Sparkes (This Morning), Danielle Mason, Saira Khan; actors, James Cosmo, Nina Wadia; former England footballer, David Seaman and partner, ice skater, Frankie Poultney; former England cricketer, Phil Tuffnell; reality TV star, Farah Sattaur (Ex On The Beach); The Apprentice contestant, Nick Showering; and MP Chris Grayling. The event was hosted by comedian Hugh Dennis.
Mr Sunak said: “The thing I’ve learnt about being Prime Minister is that the best training I ever had was working in a curry house. I know how hard every one of you works from the chefs to the waiters to the restaurant managers and the delivery drivers. And that experience gave me a huge appreciation of business, of the importance of treating people fairly and the value of this most iconic of British Asian industries. So I’m delighted to be supporting Britain’s ‘Curry Oscars’. I want to thank all of you for everything you do to fill our high streets and our homes with some of the best curry in the world.”