South Woodford's Grand Trunk Road wins best Asian restaurant award

Rajesh Suri, owner of Grand Trunk Road in South Woodford

Rajesh Suri, owner of Grand Trunk Road in South Woodford - Credit: Grand Trunk Road

A South Woodford eatery has won best Asian restaurant at the Asian Restaurant Awards 2021. 

Grand Trunk Road, an Indian restaurant in High Road, was awarded the prize at a gala dinner and presentation ceremony at the Mercure Piccadilly in Manchester. 

The restaurant, which recently announced the arrival of a new head chef, Arup Dasgupta, takes inspiration from a historic trading route for its menu of traditional Indian dishes. 

Rajesh Suri, owner of Grand Trunk Road, said: “We couldn’t be more thrilled to win best Asian restaurant - what an amazing way to celebrate coming out of lockdown.” 

Grand Trunk Road in High Road is inspired by an Asian trading route set up in the 16th century

Grand Trunk Road in High Road is inspired by an Asian trading route set up in the 16th century - Credit: Grand Trunk Road

More than 100,000 online votes from members of the public determined the shortlist, after which the finalists were visited by judges from the Asian Catering Federation (ACF), which hosts the event. 

Following the restaurant’s nomination earlier this month, Rajesh told the Recorder: “It’s a wonderful feeling that the hard work of my team, my chefs and my floor staff has been recognised.  

“After this tough time we’ve been through, winning an award would be an amazing present to all of us. I can’t thank enough our diners who have voted for us to get to this level.” 

Grand Trunk Road, which it takes its name from the centuries old Asian trade route, was opened in November 2016 and has featured in the Michelin Guide and The Good Food Guide for four years. 

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It aims to provide a “food journey” of the route, which runs around 1500 miles across Bangladesh, Pakistan, India, and Afghanistan. 

Rajesh travelled across a large portion of the Grand Trunk Road over five weeks, collecting recipes for classic dishes served in the royal palaces as well as traditional roadside snacks. 

He told the Recorder: “Our menu is based on the Grand Trunk trade route and the old traditional methods of cooking have been adapted to an extent where we could bring those original, subtle, classical flavours to our food. 

“People don’t have to go to central London or to Mayfair to find this high-quality Indian food."

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