On occasion of World Food Day on October 16, keeping up with the spirit and flavour of Vasudaivam Kutumbhakam, the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) organised a conference to announce “Annapurna Certificate” for Indian restaurants abroad who are celebrating Indian culture through food on far away shores.
Food, much like art, music, and fashion — if not more — can be a big gateway to knowing and celebrating a culture. Fully understanding the culinary and cultural power of the plate, this conference celebrated Indian chefs and restaurants operating on the soils of countries like Sri Lanka, Costa Rica, Oman, Mangolia amongst others.
Chaired by President, ICCR Dr. Vinay Sahasrabuddhe, Acting Director General, ICCR, Rajeev Kumar and DDG, ICCR Abhay Kumar, the evening was held at the India International Centre, New Delhi on the crisp autumn evening –with festivities in the air.
The Ambassador of Sweden, along with senior diplomats from the embassies of Sri Lanka, Costa Rica, Oman, and Mongolia and Chef Manjit Gill, President, Indian Federation of Culinary Association and Vishnu Manohar, Executive Chef, Manohar Groups, attended the conference, which was followed by dinner, where the talk was primarily around food and the popularity of Indian cuisine. “From architecture to textile designing to education to culinary traditions, everything is a part of the concept of culture and especially when talking about Indian culture we have been spreading the message of our culture and its very enriched traditions which
are several millennia old as a part of the institutional mission of ICCR,” said, President, ICCR Dr Vinay Sahasrabuddhe.
During the conference, President of ICCR also announced the names of the six restaurants from six different countries chosen by a panel of jury constituted by ICCR for the “Annapurna Certificate”. These names were shortlisted out of a total of 115 nominations received from Indian Missions abroad.
During the conference, President of ICCR also announced the names of the six restaurants from six different countries chosen by a panel of jury constituted by ICCR for the “Annapurna Certificate”
An eminent jury comprised of Shri Sudhansh Pant, Ms. V. Vidyavathi, Chef Manjit Gill, Shri Arun Parthasarathy, Shri Vishnu Manohar and Prof. Pushpesh Pant and they selected the following six restaurants: Balaji Dosai- Kandy, Sri Lanka; Indian Street Food & Co.- Stockholm, Sweden; Amber India Restaurant- San Fransico, USA; Naans and Curies, An Ethnic Indian Restaurant- San Jose, Costa Rica; Mumtaz Mahal Restaurant- Muscat, Oman; and Namaste Indian Restaurant- Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. This certification includes a plaque and memento of Devi Annapurna, the plaque will be presented to the winning restaurants in a special ceremony in their respective countries by the Heads of Indian Missions.
Furthermore, to engage with the owners and chefs of the selected restaurants, they will all be invited to India to receive the memento of Devi Annapurna in person, which will be presented by Dr Vinay Sahasrabuddhe, President of ICCR, at a separate ceremony.
The ICCR’s Annapurna Certificate is a first-of-its-kind way of honouring Indian restaurants based abroad which have been significantly contributing to the promotion of Indian cuisine and culinary traditions. This initiative of ICCR recognizes and celebrates the global ambassadors of authentic Indian cuisine, fostering cultural exchanges through the universal language of food.