BNC Publishing and Hotel & Catering News Middle East’s Leaders in Food & Beverage Awards 2019 will take place on Wednesday, November 13 at Hilton Dubai Al Habtoor City.
Categories include both People and Restaurants, with some exciting new additions that reflect the dynamic nature of the industry. Restaurant Categories recognise the best venues in the region, offering exceptional service and world-class dining experiences, as well as the biggest market disruptors, while People Awards celebrate visionaries, leaders and pioneers.
Leading Sustainable Restaurant
At the heart of every successful F&B outlet’s ethos is a commitment to sustainability, a crucial trend that has taken over for the past few years. The Leading Sustainable Restaurant winner will have demonstrated outstanding efforts and achievements with regards to environmentally-friendly practices, sparing no efforts whenever possible to source ingredients ethically and locally, manage waste, and more, while encouraging a sustainable lifestyle among its community and beyond.
Leading Healthy Restaurant
Setting an example with its health-oriented offerings, this restaurant will boast a menu that caters to a range of diners’ food choices and preferences when it comes to nutritional value. Not only does it serve options for vegans, vegetarians, flexitarians and many others, but the Leading Healthy restaurant must have championed initiatives to educate and inform the masses of the benefits of a balanced lifestyle.
Leading Homegrown Restaurant Brand
Unique interiors, exceptional service and dishes, and a cuisine connoisseur spearheading the kitchen are among some of the criteria for the winner in this category. This restaurant will have brought something new to the scene and demonstrated consistency, succeeding in garnering its very own loyal customer base in a short period of time.
Disruptor of the Year
The winner of this category will have changed an aspect of the industry as we know it, putting their own twist on the business. From ground-breaking food truck concepts and foodie gatherings, to game-changing delivery services and multi-functional digital platforms, the Disruptor of the Year’s business model must be original, solid and creative, commanding its own place in the market and triggering positive change.
The Best Newcomer Award recognises an F&B concept which was launched within this year and has demonstrated remarkable performance. Whether it is a new kid on the block in the street food arena, or a sophisticated venue targeting luxury dining seekers, the winner will have redefined standards and introduced its own flavour to the industry.
Best Interior Design
When it comes to a 360-degree dining experience, aesthetics and ambience can make or break a setting. Best Interiors and Design, an award which is to be entered as a collaboration between the designer and outlet, recognises an impeccably designed space which reflects everything from diner style to price point, also ensuring a seamless workflow and highly efficient operations.
Leading Casual Dining Restaurant
The winning restaurant in this category needs to have mastered the art of casual dining, offering a relaxed, informal space to its customers – while maintaining quality when it comes to food and beverage operations, as well as setting.
Leading Fine Dining Restaurant
An exclusive, luxurious venue, the Leading Fine Dining Restaurant will be detail-oriented to the highest of standards, offering faultless service and tantalising dishes that reflect the true essence of high-end dining. Customers can expect an above-and-beyond approach at this restaurant, with experienced, knowledgeable staff catering to diners’ needs in complete harmony with the restaurant’s style.
Leading Nightlife Venue
Music that gets the crowd moving, lighting and sound equipment to complement it and more – these are all factors that are key to a magnificent nightlife experience. A hot city spot, the Leading Nightlife Venue will offer exciting entertainment that appeals to a range of partygoers and first-time guests.
Leading Sports Bar
Whether it is the latest in football or cricket, the Leading Sports Bar will be the perfect venue for customers to watch a game with the optimum selection of food and beverages to go along with it. This outlet will feature big screens and a comfortable, yet bustling, ambience in true spirit of the world of sport.
Leading Brunch Concept
The top Brunch Concept will be a winner in the brunch game, featuring a variety of food offerings and the right entertainment to go along with it – with a focus on service standards and a fulfilling extended dining experience for its target crowd.
Leading Fusion Restaurant
Mastering the true art of mixing different cuisines, this category is dedicated to restaurants that have managed to strike the perfect balance between foods from around the globe. The Leading Fusion Restaurant will create awe-inspiring dining experiences for guests – while staying true to the essence of each cuisine and highlighting some of its most defining characteristics.
Leading Fast-Casual Restaurant/Café
Maintaining consistently seamless operations while running a fast-paced F&B outlet culture can be tricky. However, the Leading Fast-Casual Restaurant/Café will excel in quick service without compromising on quality.
Leading Delivery Platform
A smooth, hassle-free experience is at the heart of successful delivery platform operations. Not only will the winner offer a user-friendly interface, but it will also ensure unmatched service from the moment customers sign in all the way to post-delivery assistance and complaint management.
Leading F&B Director
The Leading Hotel F&B Director award highlights the achievements of an individual who has demonstrated an exceptional ability to exceed KPIs, streamlining operational processes, developing and enhancing restaurant concepts and maintaining excellence in team leadership and management.
Chef of the Year
Open to head chefs and executive chefs, the Chef of the Year Award recognises an individual who has shown passion for the art of cooking, in addition to culinary flair and a strong skillset pertaining to overseeing kitchen operations efficiently while managing costs.
Pastry Chef of the Year
The Pastry Chef of the Year is a master of his craft, with a strong grasp of the fundamentals, as well as a flair for new techniques and sourcing quality ingredients. Their creations are the talk of the town, consistently exceeding expectations with a “wow” factor.
Leading F&B Investor
The Leading F&B Investor will have an eye for good business, with a strong portfolio that showcases one venture’s success after the other. Taking calculated risks in the world of F&B investment, they can see a model through to completion, while factoring in every aspect along the way.
Young F&B Leader
Under 30 years old, this young pioneer has made headlines in the Middle East’s competitive F&B scene with an exciting new restaurant or catering concept, an innovative F&B tech platform or a supply chain or food service solution.
A CEO of a restaurant group with a well-known brand, or a number of ventures, under their leadership, the F&B Heavyweight will be handling a portfolio of more than ten outlets in the GCC with a pipeline of openings in the near future reflecting strength and popularity.
Bartender of the Year
The Bartender of the Year has a deep understanding of flavour combinations that work. They are familiar with the classics and are not afraid to experiment, all while successfully managing their time and maintaining outstanding customer service as well as teamwork skills.
Best Service Team of the Year
An F&B team who consistently demonstrates operational excellence and exceptional productivity along with attention to detail, the winning service team will have full control over internal communication and customer service. A team who has implemented an innovative process will receive extra merit in the selection process.
F&B Marketeer of the Year
A marketeer who understands the market and can predict any obstacles or challenges – and formulate strategies and solutions to overcome them – the F&B Marketeer will have a clear vision when it comes to conceptualising, planning and implementing effective F&B campaigns.
Restaurant Manager of the Year
Managing a very successful restaurant brand born in the Middle East or abroad, the Restaurant Manager of the Year will be well-versed in the ins and outs of running a restaurant and boast a strong business acumen.
F&B Entrepreneur(s) of the Year
A visionary, the F&B Entrepreneur thinks across the board. From manpower to taking over the market, they bring new ideas to the table with their concepts, ensuring their model achieves the desired success rates and targets in no time.
Food Tech Innovator of the Year
This category recognises a top food tech innovator, one who is pushing boundaries and responding to societal and environmental changes. From plant-based investments and out-of-the-box menus, to packaging solutions, the Food Tech Innovator is a creative force in the F&B landscape.