Times Series: Mazlum Demir of Skewd Kitchen in Cockfosters wins chef of the year at the British Kebab Awards

27 February 2017

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It’s official – the man who can make you the UK’s best kebab is right here in Barnet.

Mazlum Demir, executive chef and director at Skewd Kitchen, Cockfosters has been named chef of the year in this year’s British Kebab Awards

The result was announced in a glamourous ceremony at the Westminster Park Plaza hotel in central London last night (February 26).

The 33-year-old, who goes by Maz, said: “I am very happy to be awarded chef of the year.

“There were many other great chefs shortlisted in this category, so it feels amazing to be recognised and we will continue to push boundaries as Skewd Kitchen.”

The establishment, run by Tyree Waterston and Owain Davies, had also been shortlisted in three other categories – Best Kebab House Outside London, Best Value and Best Fine Dining – at the fifth annual awards ceremony. Members of the public were invited to nominate their favourite kebab shops, with those whittled down to a shortlist based on the number of public votes received with bonus points for nominations from MPs. More than 1,200 guests including over 50 MPs and Lords attended the VIP-studded ceremony at the Park Plaza Westminster Bridge Hotel in London, with headline sponsor Just Eat. Tyree said: “We genuinely have a real passion for food and we cook everything we make in a huge real wood burning oven and the support from local people has been incredible. ““Our menu ranges from handmade rustic flatbreads, platters and pizza to our infamous posh kebabs and we are so proud to work with other local Whitley Bay businesses.” British Kebab Awards and Bira creator Ibrahim Dogus said: “Every year we see the competition get tougher so I congratulate every kebab business that won a British Kebab Award.” “MPs got behind their kebab shops and restaurants by the dozen with more than 40 nominating businesses in their constituencies and that’s great to see. I look forward to seeing what the contenders serve up in 2018.” Graham Corfield, UK managing director of Just Eat, said: “On behalf of Just Eat, I would like to congratulate all of the winners on receiving a British Kebab Award in 2017. “It is a phenomenal achievement in what are well established and highly competitive fields. “The kebab businesses that have succeeded this year serve as shining examples within their local communities and, at the same time, support the thriving UK kebab industry. The award for every winner is hugely deserved.”

Maz had also been nominated at the awards in 2015, then for the young chef of the year gong.

He appeared on Chris Evan’s BBC Radio 2 show this morning to share some of the secrets making Skewd Kitchen’s kebabs tasty, telling him “marinating and resting” the meat is pivotal.

Judges considered food standards agency ratings and public nominations, among other factors, and carried out discreet visits and enquiries before choosing the winners.

Prime minister Theresa May, Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan and other public figures have all offered their support to the event.

According to a research by British Kebab Awards, the kebab industry is worth more than £2.8 billion in the UK and there are over 20,000 kebab shops in the country.

By Rhys Handley for Times Series Published First on Times Series on 25 February 2017

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