A WEST Ealing restaurant owner fought off tough competition to win two awards at a ceremony celebrating the country’s finest curries. 

Manik Miah, chef and owner of Haweli on the Uxbridge Road, won Chef of the Year and Businessman of the Year for the Middlesex area at the 2021 Euro Asia Curry Awards. 

Manik took on the ownership of Haweli just two months before the pandemic started. 

He said: “It’s been a very stressful 18 months – probably the toughest time of my life – but things feel like they’re back on track now, and receiving this award means a lot.” 

During lockdowns, when the restaurant could provide only takeaways, Manik and his team provided free hot meals for vulnerable people in the community, mosque users, Royal Mail employees and NHS workers at Hammersmith Hospital.  

“My team worked for free so they could help people who were either vulnerable or working on the frontline. They wanted to do their bit during a tough time,” he said. 

Manik started cooking when he was 16, helping out his father who was also a chef.

More than 200 restaurants and takeaways serving curries, from Indian to Thai, were nominated for this year’s awards.