Midlothian restaurant Itihaas has been named one of the top 100 curry specialists in Britain.
The Dalkeith restaurant, opened less than four years ago, is one of only six establishments in Scotland among 100 shortlisted in the 2011 British Curry Awards. The others are in Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Renfrewshire.
It is the latest distinction for Itihaas, voted best South Asian restaurant in Scotland in 2010 in awards run by Spice Times magazine and one of four finalists in the Indian category of this year’s Scottish Restaurant Awards.
Some 2,700 restaurants were entered for the British Curry Awards from a record 68,000 public nominations. Nine regional winners will be selected from the shortlist and announced at the Battersea Evolution, London, on 28 November at an event hosted by celebrity chef James Martin and attended by more than 1,500 guests. It will be the biggest night of the year for almost 100,000 people involved in the industry.
Awards’ organiser Enam Ali MBE said: “This is the seventh year of the British Curry Awards and the standards get higher every year. To reach the shortlist is a tremendous achievement. Interest in the competition has been greater than ever, underlining the tremendous support for Britain’s favourite food.”
Matin Khan, Bangladeshi-born Director of the restaurant on Dalkeith’s Eskbank Road, commented: “My team are proud to have been listed as one of the best curry restaurants in the whole of Britain and one of only a very select number in Scotland.
“Our menus are built around traditional Indian and Bangladeshi dishes, using the freshest ingredients and authentic spices. Curries come in an amazing array of flavours and textures, and we consistently try to get our customers’ taste buds buzzing!”
Mr Khan recently opened another Midlothian restaurant, Radhuni, in Loanhead’s Clerk Street.