Bob Spink MP , who this year again backed a winning local team, said:
“I am so proud to have such wonderful restaurants, serving succulent sizzling stupendous food in south Essex. This was a fantastic result that puts Essex on the culinary map and shows the diversity in South East Asian cuisine. I am proud to support our local businesses, they are ‘simply the best.
Out of over 10 000 Indian restaurants across the UK, the 100 best were entered, by MPs, into the National Tiffin Cup competition. These were narrowed down to 11 finalists who had a cook-out at the Palace of Westminster last night that saw stiff competition. A panel of celebrity TV chefs, chaired by Ainsley Harriott including Sanjay Anand from Madhus and Anuirudh Arora MBE from the world famous Oberoi Hotel Udaivilas in India, scrutinised, cogitated and consumed items from each finalist’s menu, prepared by the restaurant’s own chefs.
One quarter of the points were awarded for menu, ambience, quality of service and quality of food found by secret eaters who visited each restaurant, unannounced, through the year. Three quarters of the points were awarded for the quality of food cooked for the celebrity chef panel last night at Westminster.
Benfleet’s London Road Maharaja were supreme, winning 2nd runner up position. Dr Bob Spink MP, Ainsley Harriott, and the Rt Hon Ed Miliband MP, Minister for the Cabinet Office and Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster presented the Maharaja with a glass vase to commemorate their superb achievement.
Mr Siraj Ali CEO of the Maharaja Restaurant said:
“We are delighted to have entered the Tiffin Cup for the first time, representing Essex and the South East of England and to have won the 2nd position. It’s fantastic news not just for us and but for Essex as we always make sure we provide the best in food and service to our customers. At the Maharaja we like to make each and every customer feel like royalty, surrounding them with opulent beauty, a sumptuous atmosphere, exquisite tasting royal cuisine and not forgetting a dedication to service to make everyone feel like a Maharaja.”