Due to recent events, the Estrella Damm National Restaurant Awards wasn’t able to take place. Instead, the event organisers have put together a Top 100 charity auction of unique experience, with all proceeds donated to causes in support of the hospitality industry.
Partnering with Hospitality Action, The Estrella Damm National Restaurant Awards is raising funds for those whose livelihoods are at risk, as a direct consequence of the Covid-19 pandemic. At the time of writing, over £70,000 has already been raised.
Restaurants and chefs from the Top 100 list past and present have donated a host of experiences, to create one-of-a-kind lots. The Top 100 Auction also includes international experiences such meals at world-renowned Spanish restaurants El Celler de Can Roca and Tickets (flights and accommodation included). In the UK, lots also include a stay in Forest Side’s master suite, plus a cookery course and dinner; a five-course tasting menu for six, with matching wines, from The Little Chartroom, Edinburgh; a private cookery class followed by a chefs’ table dinner at Clare Smyth’s Core in Notting Hill; or dinner cooked in the auction winner’s home by Monica Galetti – Mere chef-patron and MasterChef judge.
Auction highlights include:
Moor Hall – The ultimate experience at Moor Hall, ‘the UK’s Best Restaurant’
Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons – Wine and dine experience
El Celler de Can Roca – Trip to Barcelona, meal at El Celler de Can Roca
Tickets Barcelona – Weekend for 2 in Barcelona with a meal at Adrià brothers’ Tickets
Mere – 4 course dinner for up to 10 people at home cooked by Monica Galetti
Dinner by Heston Blumenthal – a night in the Mandarin Oriental Royal Suite with matched wine dinner
A Wong – Experience London’s Chinatown with chef Andrew Wong
Ikoyi – Brunch for 4 with chef Jeremy Chan
Corbin and King – A chauffeur driven evening, dining at Colbert, The Wolseley and Brasserie Zedel
Black Axe Mangal – Rare Black Axe Mangal football shirt and a signed book
Kiln – An experience of cooking and eating with Kiln chef-patron Ben Chapman and his team in Cornwall
The Sportsman – A day in life of The Sportsman with dinner
Core by Clare Smyth – Private masterclass for 4 people plus lunch at chefs table including wine pairing
The Black Swan at Oldstead – Foraging and dining with Tommy Banks
The Quality Chop House – A day in kitchen followed by dinner for two
Paul Ainsworth – Padstow experience at Paul Ainsworth Number 6, The Mariners and Caffé Rojano
On the Top 100 Auction, last year’s National Restaurant Awards top-spot holder, Mark Birchall, of Moor Hall in Lancashire said: “We’re really proud to be supporting the Top 100 Auction. The hospitality industry has been hit incredibly hard by the pandemic and even though restaurants are opening again, there is a long and very tough road to recovery ahead. It’s so important that we come together to support this industry and those who need it the most.”
Hospitality Action added: “We welcome the Top 100 Auction initiative in bringing together some of the country’s best restaurants and chefs to raise funds for our Hospitality Recovery Fund. This auction sees the cream of the UK’s restaurant sector pulling together with some fantastic lots to help the wider hospitality sector and support those who really need it.
“Independent operators are the lifeblood of our industry, developing the most innovative concepts, championing local ingredients, and employing and nurturing the best talent. Their recovery is vital to the health of our industry and the enjoyment of the vibrant communities they serve.
“We’re braced for a tidal wave of requests for longer-term support in the coming weeks, months and years. And we’re ready to harness all our expertise to provide ongoing assistance to the people at the sharp end of the pandemic, thanks to our Hospitality Recovery Fund and initiatives such as the Top 100 Auction that help support it.”
James Healey, Estrella Damm UK Country Manager, said: “We are excited to be involved in this unique event as part of our ongoing commitment to the Estrella Damm National Restaurant Awards. This is a great way of showcasing the best of the best restaurant experiences while raising critical funds for the hospitality industry. The Estrella Damm National Restaurant Awards has always been about celebrating and rewarding the UK’s best restaurants and this year we feel we can use the platform for the greater good.”
The Top 100 Auction bids can be placed via the National Restaurant Awards website.