A restaurant in West Wickham is in the line-up to win a prestigious national award this weekend.

iNaga in Coney Hall, West Wickham first opened its doors in 2012, serving Bangladeshi dishes along with a range of Indian beers and alcoholic beverages at their “extensively stocked” bar.

The restaurant features a neutral, rustic design along with artwork and pictures of the local village.

Some of the restaurant's most popular dishes include their Naga Chicken and the I Pie lamb curry and creamed potatoes, as well as a national favourite – the classic chicken tikka masala.

The restaurant has been shortlisted to win the Best Chef award at the Asian Curry Awards 2023, an award it has won on a number of occasions in previous years.

The Asian Curry Awards brings together Britain’s best Asian restaurants, featuring contestants representing Asia's rich and diverse cuisine, including Indian, Thai, Chinese, Malaysian and Sri Lankan restaurants.

News Shopper: iNaga BromleyiNaga Bromley (Image: iNaga)

Restaurants are nominated for a range of awards in different categories, from fine dining and newcomer of the year awards, to types of cuisine such as vegan and Asian fusion.

A total of 16 Asian restaurants across south London were named as finalists in this year's awards, with 11 restaurants in south east London and five across the south of London with iNaga being among them.

The winners are set to be revealed in an awards ceremony in Central London on November 19, 2023.

News Shopper: Chef, Nanu MiahChef, Nanu Miah (Image: INaga)

Chef Nanu Miah said: ”I am very proud to be shortlisted for this award. INaga is a very busy and popular restaurant. I enjoy my job as chef there.

“I run a very good kitchen and we have great staff.

“I hope I win the award for all of us and iNaga Restaurant.”

But this is not the first time the restaurant has celebrated success, staff member Madeleine told News Shopper that the business has won a number of annual awards since 2014, with hopes to win at this year's Asian Curry Awards.

Madeleine explained: “We have won awards annually since 2014, including Best Chef 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2019.

“We also won Customer’s Choice in 2018. In 2020, the award ceremonies were all cancelled because of the pandemic but we were presented with a Covid Hero Award in recognition of what we did to support our community and the NHS throughout.

“Then we won Best Restaurant in 2021 and Best Restaurant in the London Suburbs last year.”

News Shopper: The restaurant is up for Best Chef at the Asian Curry Awards 2023The restaurant is up for Best Chef at the Asian Curry Awards 2023 (Image: iNaga)

During lockdown restrictions, iNaga owner Abdul Hay supported the local community by offering free meals to those who were in receipt of free school meals, along with delivering food to NHS staff at nearby hospitals, which earned the restaurant special recognition from the Curry Life Magazine as one of the UK’s Covid Curry Heroes.

Madeleine explained: “In lockdown when the schools were closed, anyone who would usually receive free school meals could have food from iNaga instead.

“Nobody else at the restaurant knew that the food was free, he would just mark the orders ‘paid’ so there was no embarrassment.

“He sent food to the staff at the Princess Royal Hospital and gave very generous discounts for NHS staff.”

Today, the restaurant continues to play an active role in the West Wickham community, donating to local projects and schools.

Madeleine said: “It’s a comfortable, generous, welcoming house where everyone is treated like family, from the youngest to the oldest, we want you to feel at home and enjoy your time with us.”