The 2013 BBC Good Food ME Awards ceremony took place on 29th January 2014 at The Address Dubai Marina and it was a fantastic event packed with live entertainment, delicious food and drinks and the much-anticipated announcement of the winners.
Nearly 500 people attended the event, including the UAE’s top chefs, restaurateurs and food & beverage professionals, as well as food-loving consumers, and it was most certainly a night to remember. With categories covering both cooking at home and dining out, the awards recognised the UAE’s favourite places to shop and ingredient brands to buy, as well as celebrated the top dining experiences the region has to offer.
Sudeshna Ghosh, BBC Good Food Middle East’s editor said, “One of the things that sets our awards apart are the Home Cooking categories – this is the only awards of its kind that allows consumers to give their favourite food brands their stamp of approval.”
The theme for the event was Oscars and right from the moment guests stepped into the Constellation Ballroom of the hotel, the glamorous red carpet-style spirit was felt through the decoration and from the pre-function area, where sparkling wine, cocktails and nibbles were served from 11 different Tasting Stations set up by various leading restaurants and F&B brands.
From the pre-function mingling, guests were welcomed into the gorgeous ballroom where MC Ben Jacobs lead the proceedings of the evening. After a short welcome from charismatic founder and chairman of CPI Media Group Dominic De Sousa – who, along with the CPI band, also entertained the audience with live music throughout the evening – and speech by Editor Sudeshna Ghosh, special VIP guest and celebrity chef Gary Rhodes addressed the audience. Rhodes also presented the awards for the Chef of the Year winner Amrish Sood of Rang Mahal by Atul Kochhar, JW Marriott Marquis Dubai.
According to Sudeshna Ghosh, “This year’s awards results were a mix of some surprise winners as well as some long-time favourites coming out on top. I think these awards really showcased the diverse mix of cultures we have here in the UAE. And having Gary Rhodes as our VIP celebrity chef guest was a real privilege, as, being someone who has been part of the F&B industry’s growth over the years, he not only shared his thoughts on how the industry and food scene has grown here over the years, but also gave away the prestigious Chef of the Year award – an honour for any chef.”
A total of 34 awards were given out this year including 3 new categories – Best New Restaurant, Doha, Best Seafood Restaurant and Best Experiential Dining (a restaurant that offers a unique entertainment experience along with great food).
For a full list of the winners visit the awards site within http://bbcgoodfoodme.com/awards/2013/