Bigger, better and more spectacular than ever. The British Curry Awards reached dizzying new heights as the 2008 competition reach its spectacular climax last night (19 October). More than 3000 restaurants had started out as award hopefuls, having been put forward by a staggering 28000 public nominations. An initial judging process produced a list of 100 finalists. By the time awards compere Jon Culshaw stepped on stage in the sumptuous surroundings of the Great Room at London’s famous Grosvenor House Hotel, they had been whittled down to the award winners one for each of ten regions throughout the UK. They were: Scotland / Northern Ireland: Cinnamon Club, Aberdeen North East: Last Days of the Raj, Gateshead North West: Indian Ocean, Ashton-under-Lyne, Lancashire East Midlands: Mem Saab, Northampton West Midlands: Lasan, Birmingham Wales: Bokhara Brasserie, Bridgend South East: Maliks, Cookham, Berks South West: Rajpoot, Bath London Central & City: Tamarind, Mayfair London Suburbs: Brilliant, Southall A special award as Most Innovative Restaurant went to Tiffin Bites which has four restaurants in London, and Aagrah in Sheffield picked up the Newcomer of the Year Award for establishments that have been open for less than three years. The evening was a triumph not only for the award-winning restaurateurs but also for 17-year-old Justine Ali, daughter of British Curry Awards founder Enam Ali, who was making her debut as the producer and director of the glittering ceremony

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