The “local recognition” of the restaurant thanks to the Suffolk award

4:00 PM October 8, 2022

Winning Suffolk BME Business of the Year gave an Indian restaurant local recognition it had never had before, the co-owner said.

Montaz Restaurant in Old Station Road, Newmarket, was awarded the 2019 Restaurant Business of the Year award in recognition of its reputation for high quality food and fresh local produce, offering new and innovative Indian cuisine .

Ziaur Choudhrey, who runs Montaz with his business partner and nephew Golam Mobin, said: “Suffolk in general in terms of restaurants doesn’t get a lot of recognition, so the Suffolk Business Award helps us to be recognized locally and this is obviously a great achievement for us.

He described the ‘roller coaster ride’ the restaurant had been on since receiving the award as the COVID-19 pandemic hit soon after leading to lockdowns which affected trade.

The Omicron wave impacted the activity during the first two quarters of this financial year, even if the situation improved during the last quarter.

The downside is that the hospitality industry is currently facing rising energy and raw food costs linked to the Russian invasion of Ukraine earlier this year, although Mr Choudhrey said Montaz had received a lot of support locally, which helped the company weather the storm.

Also, the family restaurant staff have been there for a long time, but other restaurants have lost EU workers as a result of Brexit.

He added: “It’s still a huge struggle for many companies because many companies have gone into debt and that debt is now being recovered, but prices have doubled or tripled in terms of raw materials and energy, So it’s a horrible time to be in the hospitality industry.

Ziaur Choudhrey and Golam Mobin receive the British Curry Award in the East Midlands category
– Credit: Montaz

But the award isn’t the only recognition the restaurant has received as in 2021 the business made national headlines when the prestigious British Curry Awards, known as the Oscars of Cookery India, awarded Montaz in the East Midlands category.

“The Suffolk BME Awards help us get that bit of publicity and promotion and remind people that we are still here and doing our best and as a restaurant we are always trying to achieve those high standards” , added Mr. Choudhrey.

Nominations for the Suffolk BME Business Awards 2022 are open until October 16.

To nominate a business or individual in one of the categories, you can download a nomination form from

Forms should be completed and returned to BSC Multicultural Services, Room 29, 19 Tower Street, IP1 3BE.

An evening of celebration will take place on Tuesday 15th November at the Waterfront Building at the University of Suffolk, from 6.30pm to 9pm.

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