An ambitious Northampton curry house has been shortlisted for one of the restaurant industry’s biggest awards.
Saffron, in Castilian Street, Northampton will compete in the Best Midlands Restaurant category of the British Curry Awards in London later this month.
The glittering ceremony is widely regarded as one of the biggest events in the catering calendar and is dubbed the ‘Curry Oscars’ – with more than 1,500 guests, politicians and celebrities attending the lavish bash.
No Northampton restaurant has ever won a British Curry Awards and Saffron owner Naz Islam says he is hoping to do the town proud.
Mr Islam said: “Being shortlisted for the British Curry Awards is a huge honour, it’s an incredible event and the award we all want to win. We were shortlisted last year but didn’t win, it would be unbelievable to go one better this year.
“To be there representing Northampton is a real privilege and we are keeping our fingers crossed we can do ourselves and the town proud and bring home the trophy. It would really put us on the map.”
Saffron will find out if it is successful at the event in Battersea on Monday, November 25. Previous guests at the awards dinner have included Prime Minister Boris Johnson and predecessors Theresa May and David Cameron while The Queen contributes a letter of support to the official event programme every year.
Organiser Enam Ali MBE has been leading the campaign to introduce so-called ‘vindaloo visas’ as part of a concerted drive to lift current immigration restrictions on skilled chefs and boost the curry industry.
He said: “Curry may have been born in India but it has been made great in Britain. These awards have become the Oscars of our industry and the competition will be fierce. It will be a night to remember.”