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Goa Beer at Dhamecha

Goa Beer at Dhamecha


Viiking Ventures, the importer of the award-winning Goa Premium Beer, has secured a distribution deal with Dhamecha Cash & Curry ahead of the busy festive trading period.

Dhamecha has 9 sites and has recently expanded into the Midlands with new depots in Leicester and Birmingham.

Goa Premium Beer is now being sold at Dhamecha’s Wembley, Hayes, Barking, Leicester and Birmingham sites, to support the areas where the authentic Indian gluten-free pilsner has strong penetration into both on– and off–trade outlets.

Goa Beer was recently named Best Marketed Product at the prestigious English Asian Business Awards.

Brewed by the family-run boutique Impala Distillery & Brewery in Goa, which was acquired in 2015 by Bollywood actor and film producer Sachiin Joshi, the beer is a popular as both an accompaniment to spicy foods and a standalone drink.

With a 4.8% ABV Goa Premium Beer is available in 650ml and 340ml bottles in restaurants and off licences.



Chapter 8 becomes Aspendos 5

Chapter 8 becomes Aspendos 5


Kent Turkish restaurant group, Aspendos named after the ancient Greco-Roman city in Asia Minor, is to open in Dover - its fifth site in Kent. The company will launch the King Street venue in January on the site of the former Chapter 8 restaurant.

Aspendos operates a restaurant in Folkestone and three takeaways, in Dymchurch, Cheriton and Hythe. Owner Gunes Aspendos said the Dover site would be the similar its Folkestone restaurant, which opened in 2015 with an open grill style of cooking.

feature freshly grilled meat, fish dishes, hot and cold mezze, salads, kebabs, seafood and vegetarian dishes.



ACF's Tiffin Club welcomes 'takeaway tax' on plastic

ACF's Tiffin Club welcomes 'takeaway tax' on plastic


Yawar Khan, the Chairman of the Asian Catering Federation (ACF), which represent the interests of 35,000 restaurants and takeaways in the UK, has given a guarded welcome to Chancellor Philip Hammond’s proposal to introduce a levy on single use plastic packaging.

The Chancellor is expected initiate a debate into the issue which Greenpeace has deemed "a global emergency".

However, Khan is calling for any new tax to be kept to a minimum and for assistance to tackle the severe problems facing the curry industry – staff shortages, rising business rates and the high rate of VAT on the hospitality sector.

“We need to reduce the problem caused by plastics, which are polluting the oceans and poisoning our marine wildlife,” said Khan, adding, “The 5p tax on plastic carrier bags has been sufficient to cut their usage by 85% so a new surcharge will not need to be excessive to bring about a change in customer behaviour. Like shops, restaurants need to pass the cost on to customers, and stop absorbing it.”

The packing on a typical family takeaway order costs the restaurant owner around 25p. Busy takeaway restaurants can easily spend £5,000 to £6,000 on single-use packaging a year.

In addition to encouraging takeaway owners and their customers to reuse plastic containers, the ACF has announced it is pushing members to introduce their own ‘Tiffin Club’, using multi-use tiffin tins, which have long been popular in India. Takeaways will simply charge a small deposit with their first order, which are then swapped on subsequent orders.

Tiffins are a set of 5 or 6 interlocking metal containers, with a carry handle.

The ACF will be offering to supply its members with tiffins which are ubiquitous in Indian cities and at railway stations along the country’s 40,000 miles of tracks. India has one of the longest rail networks in the world. The introduction of the railways by the British during colonial times, saw the advent of ‘Railway’ mutton and chicken’ dishes served in tiffins. The dishes can still be found on some UK curry house menus today.

“Tiffins, which will eliminate plastic waste and keep takeaways warm, are an ideal opportunity for restaurateurs to introduce new, healthier options authentic Indian sharing dishes, demanded by customers,” said Khan.

The ACF says that burger and pizza takeaways are more of a problem in terms of litter and points out that polystyrene boxes, unlike plastic, cannot be recycled.

The Federation is lobbying government to introduce temporary 2-year work visas for chefs from former Commonwealth countries to tackle acute staff shortages.

Curry lovers now can nominate their favourite Asian restaurant and takeaway in the ACF’s Asian Restaurant Awards, being held in Manchester on 12th February.


Rajdani named Best Indian in South East

Rajdani named Best Indian in South East


A Kent curry house, The Rajdani in West Kingsdown near Sevenoaks, has been named as the Best Indian Restaurant in the South East at the Asian Curry Awards 2017. The family-run restaurant which celebrates its 20th anniversary next year and owner Rob Khan promises to lay on a night to remember to commemorate the landmark.

“We are indebted to our loyal customers who nominated us for this prestigious award, making sure we made the shortlist to showcase the talents of our head chef Jimmi Shah and his hard-working team,” said Rob, adding “Kent is home to some excellence Asian restaurants, so to be judged best of the bunch is high praise indeed.”

The Rajdani was in excellent company during the glittering awards ceremony, with internationally famous London venues scooping other top accolades, including Michelin-starred and Quilon.

The Asian Curry Awards recognise the best in the industry, encouraging ever higher standards and to inspire the next generation of chefs and restaurateurs to join the dynamic sector.

The restaurant, which was opened by Rob’s father, Abdul, and cousin Suna Miah, two decades ago takes its name from the Bengali term for ‘Capital City.’ In days gone by, the finest spices and other culinary ingredients could only be sourced together in the capital’s food markets. So this was where the best chefs and restaurants chefs were found. Today, ‘Rajdani’ is more commonly used as the colloquial Bengali term for ‘town’.

Located just a few hundred yards from Brands Hatch motor sports circuit, The Rajdani, a roomy 100-seater venue with al fresco tables and a large private car park, attracts customers from around the country on event days.

It offers contemporary Indian dishes, with short, changing menu to appeal to all tastes. The chefs are currently developing a gourmet menu which will be released in the New Year, with a greater choice of fish, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan dishes.

A strong wine list includes Chablis, Pouilly Fumé, Chateau Neuf du Pape, plus Bollinger and Moet et Chandon champagnes. Beers include the authentic Indian import – Goa Premium Beer – which is gluten-free.

The Rajdani is open for lunch and dinner 7 days a week and kick start the weekend with live music every Friday night.


Googies Withers

Googies Withers


An award-winning Kent restaurant has closed. Googies Art Cafe in Folkestone owners Keith Holland and Steve Rees blamed a “downturn in business” along with “personal family issues.” The restaurant has been operating on Rendezvous Street near the town’s creative quarter for the 8 years.

Googies won Kent Restaurant of the Year at the Taste of Kent Awards in 2016 and made the finals of the National Burger Awards this year.



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