BiBi, Clare Smyth, Emma Underwood and The Lamb Inn among those celebrated at the GQ Food & Drink Awards 2022

Tanwen Dawn-Hiscox

Tanwen Dawn-Hiscox

Deputy Editor

Yesterday, the GQ Food & Drink Awards 2022 held its annual ceremony at Decimo at The Standard, celebrating the broad spectrum of Talented professionals that make up the UK hospitality industry 

The winners in each category, after being shortlisted by the public, were decided upon by judges Adam Baidawi, GQ's editor-in-chief; the magazine's managing director, Alexei Rosin; celebrated interior designer Aushi Meewella; Sommelier and founder of wine and spirits brand BASTARDA, Honey Spencer; award-winning bartender and entrepreneur Monica Berg; co-founder and managing director of two Michelin-starred restaurant Ikoyi, Iré Hassan-Odukale; award-winning pastry chef Ravneet Gill and Michelin-starred chefs and restaurateurs, Paul Ainsworth and Tom Kerridge.

A raft of awards for an abundance of talent

BiBi, the acclaimed JKS site headed by Simon Rogan and Mark Birchall graduate, chef Chet Sharma, was named Best Restaurant - beating runner-up, Glasgow's Michelin-starred restaurant, Cail Bruich.

Clare Smyth received the title of Best Chef, and was described by the publication as "a legend at the top of her game." 

From the founders of Kricket, SOMA Soho received title for Belvedere Best Bar, while Imad's Syrian Kitchen, refugee Imad Alarnab's restaurant, which has drawn as much praise for its food as for its impeccable, warm service, topped the Best Breakthrough category.

Two sites at The Connaught were commended - with the Best Interior named as the Red Room and the Best Overall Experience attributed to Hélène Darroze's three Michelin-starred outpost.

KOL's Maxim Schulte won the title of Best Bartender, for transforming "Britain’s thirst for Mexican spirits, consistently pushing new ground yet maintaining crystal clear vision,” according to Alexei Rosin; while Gordon Ker was named Best Restaurateur for his four-site Blacklock Group, with the brand receiving praise from chef Paul Ainsworth for its “consistency, quality, and affordability.”

The Pem's Emma Underwood beat contenders from Bibendum, A. Wong, Bardo, and runner-up Anneka Brooks, formerly of Davies & Brook, to win the title of Best Front of House.

Will Murray and Jack Croft's Fallow Restaurant was given the Sustainability Award, for, according to GQ, proving "that eating sustainably needn’t mean compromising on flavour or fun," while Akoko's Henna Zinzuwadia was named Best Sommelier, for, in Iré Hassan-Odukale's words, putting together an "accomplished yet accessible" list at the modern West African restaurant on London's Berners Street.

Ashbourne converted coach house Callow Hall was named Best Hotel, while Peter Creed and Tom Noest's Oxfordshire outpost, The Lamb Inn, was given the title of Best Pub.

Founder of Be Inclusive Hospitality, Lorraine Copes, scooped the Veuve Clicquot Innovator Award for her work promoting equity, diversity and inclusion in hospitality.

The Editor's Special Award went to the Hendersons - as in, Margot and Fergus, the powerhouse couple behind St John's and Rochelle Canteen, two pillars of the UK's culinary landscape - who, as published in GQ, "have shaped this country's culinary landscape in their own gastronomic image."

Last but not least, Michelin-starred chef Angela Hartnett OBE, considered within the hospitality as "not just one of the UK’s best-loved and most respected chefs, but a bona fide national treasure," was given a Lifetime Achievement Award.

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Tanwen Dawn-Hiscox

Tanwen Dawn-Hiscox

Deputy Editor 27th April 2022

BiBi, Clare Smyth, Emma Underwood and The Lamb Inn among those celebrated at the GQ Food & Drink Awards 2022