Indian restaurant Nouvelle Lounge is celebrating after winning both the Restaurant of the Year award and Best Newcomer award at the Enjoy St Albans Food and Drink Festival Awards 2023.

The restaurant in Marshalswick opened a year ago with the aim of serving traditional curry dishes in a modern setting.

St Albans residents nominated venues and producers from around the district earlier this year in the eight categories. A shortlist was then drawn up for a public vote.

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Members from the festival’s Steering Committee made surprise visits to the venues, who thereafter selected a winner from the top three in each category.

The awards were announced at a ceremony at St Michael’s Manor on Monday, October 2.

Herts Advertiser: Nouvellé Lounge owner Mohammed Shoohan Choudhury.Nouvellé Lounge owner Mohammed Shoohan Choudhury. (Image: Nouvellé Lounge / Mohammed Shoohan Choudhury)

The festival, now in its 16th year, is organised by St Albans City and District Council with the help of a steering group.

The list of winners are as follows:

  • Restaurant of the Year - Nouvellé Lounge, Marshalswick, St Albans.
  • Best Pub or Bar - The Green Man, Sandridge.
  • Best Café - The Potting Shed, Carpenters Nursery, Sandridge.
  • Best Food and Drink shop or Market Stall - Carpenter's Nursery, Sandridge.
  • Best Takeaway or Street Food - Kat's Oriental Cuisine, St Albans.
  • Best Local Producer - The Pudding Stop, Redbourn.
  • Best Newcomer- Nouvellé Lounge.
  • Kate D’Arcy Award for Customer Service - The Angoni family of Bellacino's, French Row, St Albans.

Mayor of St Albans, Councillor Anthony Rowlands commented: “My congratulations go not just to the winners, but to all of the finalists. It is a tremendous honour to win one of these coveted awards which give recognition to our local hospitality industry.”

“I enjoyed meeting many of the finalists at the awards ceremony and have been hugely impressed with the passion they have for their work.”

“The awards allow us the chance to celebrate the achievements of our marvellous food and drink industry,” said Councillor Lynn Cunningham, lead councillor for events.

“It also helps us promote these outstanding businesses and highlight how much choice and value there is on offer when you eat, drink and shop locally”.

Herts Advertiser: Nouvellé Lounge won Best Newcomer and Restaurant of the Year.Nouvellé Lounge won Best Newcomer and Restaurant of the Year. (Image: Nouvellé Lounge / Mohammed Shoohan Choudhury.)

Nouvellé Lounge's owner, Mohammed Shoohan Choudhury, added: "I would like to thank the whole community for the love and support we have received.

"To mark our one year anniversary we have been privileged to win Restaurant of the year 2023 and Best Newcomer 2023 of St Albans.

"A huge thank you to everyone who voted for us!

"We mean to prosper and thrive to grow bigger, better and deliver a remarkable dining experience for you all."