Mid Wales

Welsh Curry House crown for Bengal Spices, Llanymynech

Bengal Spices owner Mizanur Chowdhury and chef Anand George collecting the award in Cardiff on Monday
Image caption Bengal Spices owner Mizanur Chowdhury and chef Anand George collecting the Welsh Curry House award in Cardiff

A curry house in a Powys village with a population of just 750 has been voted the best in Wales.

Bengal Spices in Llanymynech, near Welshpool, was described by the judges as a "colourful haven" as it won Welsh Curry House of the year 2013 title.

Owner Mizanur Chowdhury said the success was due in part to his regular customers, some of whom drove from miles around to eat with him.

"I am so happy. I could hardly sleep last night," said Mr Chowdhury.

As part of the competition chefs at Bengal Spices prepared five dishes for a panel of judges at the restaurant on 16 April. The judges said they were impressed with the food and service.

It is the second successive year that it has reached the final stages of the national competition having been named the regional winner last year.

"We won the regional award for mid and west Wales last year so it was great to go one better and win the national title," Mr Chowdhury said.

"I think our success is down to our regular customers who eat with us every week. Our service and the quality of our food are two of our strengths as well."

Mr Chowdhury said the restaurant cooked using local produce including Welsh lamb.

Niaz Taj, the chairman of the awards jury, said the judges were impressed by the warm welcome they received at Bengal Spices.

"This small cottage has been transformed into a colourful haven serving traditional Bangladeshi food to a grateful and loyal rural community," he said.

"The commitment of the owner to deliver tasty quality food in such a rural location is something we believe should be celebrated."

"The competition was very tough this year. The jury, for the first time in the history of the competition, were unable to agree unanimously on a winner the first time round and were asked to retire over the weekend to consider."

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