Winner #IFBA 2013 …food/ culinary & travel category

Yesterday was Doshomi, the last day of the Durga Pujo which always leaves one a bit wistful but this time ended on a high for the blog and me.

I went with the Bandra Notun Palli group to the bishorjon walking from Bandra to Juhu yesterday afternoon. In between I shed my inhibitions and joined the gang and danced to the beat of the dhaaks on Linking Road and then on Juhu Beach. As it turned out there would be a reason to celebrate later in the day.

I headed back home from Juhu to change and then headed back to Juhu where my destination was the J W Marriott Hotel. This was the venue of the first #IFBA Awards given by the Food Bloggers Association of India.

The event saw a collection of food bloggers and personalities from the food world and had quite a great turn out. The food was pretty good with some interesting starters including salmon toasts, goat cheese on crackers and sushi and then dinner counters set up by the various Marriott restaurants where my favourite, among a great range of food, was the duck red curry at the Thai counter which was truly sublime. I think I am going to head back to the Marriott just for that one night. It was also great meeting executive chef Himanshu Tandon of the Marriott there.

Cocktails were followed by the awards ceremony with food blogs feted across many diverse categories.

And here’s what I wanted to share with you. Finely Chopped won too!!!

Finely Chopped won in the Food/ Culinary and Travel segment!

I’ve always seen myself as a food and travel blogger and am particularly happy to have won in this category.

I am really over the moon with this and the award feels like a wonderful reward after having completed six years of blogging. I can’t thank Sameer Malkani and the team at the Food Bloggers Association enough for this and the great panel of judges who, from what I understand, had to go through to 700 (!) food blogs across various categories and judged the blogs on technical and creative parameters. The judges were a mix of TV food show hosts, food journalists and food bloggers. I think that the awards, which showcased so many food blogs from across the country, will play a great role in strengthening and growing the food blogging community in India.

With Sameer Malkani, the co-founder of FBAI

What made this even more special is receiving the award from the lovely Rashmi Uday Singh who is one of the warmest and kindest people that I have come across.

A big round of congrats to the other winners, the nominees and all the participants and kudos to the FBAI for giving the food blogging community of India such a boost through this.

As for me, I am a very very happy and proud man.

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The following photos were taken by Kamalika of Silence Sings. You can see the album of all her photos from the evening including the other winner, the great photos and people at the event here

The following is a picture of the first set of food bloggers from Mumbai at the event

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