Yorkshire Evening Post Curry House of the Year Competition 2019: King of the Curries in Leeds revealed

Head chef Rippon Ali, at work at Spice Zone, Crossgates, winners of the Yorkshire Evening Post Curry House of the Year 2019.
Head chef Rippon Ali, at work at Spice Zone, Crossgates, winners of the Yorkshire Evening Post Curry House of the Year 2019.
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THE King of the Curries in Leeds has been crowned, after an unprecedented number of entries to the Yorkshire Evening Post Curry House of the Year competition.

Winners were today revealed, after a tough battle for the title to win the accolade that confirms they are among the very best curry houses in the city, as voted by customers.

Staff at Spice Zone, Crossgates, winners of the Yorkshire Evening Post Curry House of the Year 2019. Photo by Jonathan Gawthorpe.

Staff at Spice Zone, Crossgates, winners of the Yorkshire Evening Post Curry House of the Year 2019. Photo by Jonathan Gawthorpe.

Fresh ingredients, good food, new dishes and a warm welcome have been cited as the main reasons curry connoisseurs keep coming back for more, by winning restaurant bosses.

In first place is Spice Zone, at Pendas Way, Crossgates, who have been crowned the King of the Curries. They also won the title last year and

were shortlisted twice previously.

The restaurant has been operating for almost eight years and is owned by Syed Jaber Ahmed and younger brother Shaber.

Winners of the Yorkshire Evening Post Curry House of the Year 2019 Spice Zone in Cross Gates. Shaber Ahmed, left, and Syed Jaber Ahmed.'Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe

Winners of the Yorkshire Evening Post Curry House of the Year 2019 Spice Zone in Cross Gates. Shaber Ahmed, left, and Syed Jaber Ahmed.'Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe

A delighted Mr Ahmed, 39, said: “We are really, really happy to be King of the Curries and once again winners of the YEP Curry House

Competition. It is a great honour and we can only thank our customers who have voted for us.

“The secret to our success is fresh ingredients and tasty dishes. We are traditional but change our dishes regularly. Our food is Bangladeshi style, where our family originally comes from.

“Our most popular dish is Guss Khatta Masala, diced lamb with garlic, ginger, coriander, peppers and onions, served on a sizzler and also phall dishes,” he added.

Sayed Ahmed at Spice House in Halton runner up in the YEP curry house of the year

Sayed Ahmed at Spice House in Halton runner up in the YEP curry house of the year

In second place is Spice House, Selby Road, Halton, where manager Syed Noor Ahmed, says their consistently high quality food makes them a winner.

He said: “We know what the customer wants and that is good, high quality food, with an excellent service. We have around 2,000 regular

customers and we get to know a lot of people. I was pushed to enter the competition as the customers said they would vote for us.

“We have an excellent staff team, helped by fellow managers Syed Shuev and Samim Ahmed.

Sayed Ahmed and his team at Spice House in Halton runner up in the YEP curry house of the year

Sayed Ahmed and his team at Spice House in Halton runner up in the YEP curry house of the year

“Our most popular dish is the Nawabi Patil, which has 21 ingredients. The recipe came from my mother. We sold more than 12,000 of this dish

last year, the customers love it.”

Third place goes to Raies Tandoor Restaurant, at Roundhay Road, where Max Kiani runs the popular restaurant with wife Zahida, who is known as ‘Mrs Max’.

Mr Kiani, who has 40 years experience in restaurants, said: “Our success is down to our food which is authentic, old Apni style Kashmiri Punjabi cooking. We are the best at food and we don’t need to advertise.

“The restaurant has been here since 1976 and I have been here for 38 years. Obviously we should have won, I would have been happier with first place and I would like to do a live cooking competition to confirm who is the best.

This year’s competition attracted a huge number of entries, after readers sent in a coupon to vote for their favourite Leeds curry restaurant.

Yorkshire Evening Post Curry House of the Year 2019. Raies Tandoori Restaurant, at Roundhay Road in 3rd place.'Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe

Yorkshire Evening Post Curry House of the Year 2019. Raies Tandoori Restaurant, at Roundhay Road in 3rd place.'Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe

Bengal Brasserie, at Haddon Road, and Jinnah, at York Road, almost made the top three, after narrowly missing out on the vote count.