Traditional Indian

Nominate restaurants whose ethos and menu are centred around the preservation of Indian culinary heritage. The menu and dishes must stay true to the origin and roots of the cuisine, in both recipe and presentation, while still leaving room for innovation. Restaurants that credit provenance, and use produce as present in the root cuisine must be ranked higher.

Progressive India

Nominate restaurants whose offerings are a modern interpretation of traditional Indian cuisine. Dishes must be a radical departure from the traditional, by way of technique or presentation, showcasing the restaurant’s individuality, creativity, and ethos. Look for thoughtful creativity in innovation, separating ingenuity from gimmick and fusion.

Emerging Indian

Nominate restaurants that place value on hyper-local cuisine, are ingredient-centric, and feature lesser-known regional cuisines, setting new direction for both industry and consumer.


Nominate restaurants that honour the Chinese culinary tradition, showcasing the diversity of cuisine, ingredients and techniques from the region. Guest experience must include an authentic experience of Chinese hospitality.

Multi-Asian cuisine

Nominate restaurants that have three or more Asian cuisines in their repertoire, offering a faithful representation of cuisine and culture, extending the experience to design, decor, and service.


Nominate restaurants that present Italian cuisine true to the region of origin, keeping provenance, culinary culture, etiquette and tradition at the forefront of service and cuisine.


Nominate restaurants with a seafood-led menu, whose quality, freshness, and treatment of produce, have remained consistently high. Restaurants that prioritise ethical sourcing, have sustainable practices built into their menus, and make efforts to educate the diner as part of the guest experience, must be ranked higher.


Nominate lounges and bars that offer a comprehensive nightlife experience. Parameters to be considered include vibe, energy, cocktail selection, ability to draw a crowd, and a compelling curation of popular culture, ie, DJs, live bands, stand-up comedy, etc.

New Restaurant

Nominate the best new restaurants to have opened over the last year (from 1st January 2018), with a minimum of six months in the running. The restaurant should have made a significant impact on the city’s restaurant culture, built a substantial following, and maintained consistency in quality of food, service, and ambience, since opening.

Iconic Restaurant

Nominate a restaurant that has been in the city's culinary space for a minimum of five years; has consistently maintained quality and service standards, and has been able to retain a loyal customer base while also drawing in new diners. A restaurant that is nominated in this category cannot win in any other category.

Most Innovative Restaurant Concept

Nominate a restaurant with a concept or experience that has introduced innovation though technique or service, design or diner experience, menu, theme, or industry innovation.

Best Indian Wine

To be awarded to an Indian wine, judged on colour, clarity, body, bouquet, balance, complexity, and grape blend. Also consider versatility (Does it pair well with different cuisines? Can you drink it through the year?), and value for money. Please be sure to mention the vintage of the wine.

Best Indian Brew

An exceptional craft beer assessed according to parameters of flavour, aroma, colour, mouthfeel, quality and retention of head.

Chef of the Year

Nominees must be in the restaurant business for a minimum of 5 years to qualify for this award. Foreign chefs who have been part of the restaurant culture in India for five years will also qualify. Points for chefs who have been promoting lesser-known cuisines, are conscious about ethical sourcing of produce, and are at the forefront of new.

Recognising Inclusive F&B Establishments

Restaurants that provide a safe working environment with equal opportunity for people of all genders, economic backgrounds, languages and cultures. Kitchens that employ differently-abled, or provide opportunity to marginalised groups, deserve to be ranked higher.

Lifetime Achievement Award

Nominate individuals who have created a legacy in the food and beverage industry, and have dedicated their work to furthering the quality of the industry. These individuals can be chefs, restaurateurs, food historians, food writers, cookbook authors, or anyone else in the food space.

Food Entertainer

A TV personality who is charismatic, engaging, and educates while entertaining. An entertainer who sheds light on more obscure cuisines and dishes, taking viewers beyond the glamour and glitz of the food industry, scores higher.

Food Instagrammer

An individual who uses the platform to create quality content around food, whether it is through sharing recipes, or imparting information. Quality of photographs, writing, consistency in posting, are factors that are as important as follower count. The level of engagement from followers and a reciprocal is also to be considered. Chefs not associated with a particular restaurant, also qualify for consideration.

Hidden Gems

Lesser-known restaurants that are quietly making waves in their respective towns and cities. They do not have to adhere to traditional Indian cuisines. However, consistently exceptional food, and attentive, warm service are a must. These can include more casual restaurants, but not pop-ups. Establishments that are furthering a social cause score higher.

Social Impact

The nominees for this award are not restricted to restaurants. Individuals, institutions, social bodies, or even states, that are engaged in work that is making a significantly positive impact on how food is produced, consumed or conceptualized, qualify for this award.