Jamie Oliver named Best Food Personality at 2019 Observer Food Monthly Awards

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

Photo credit: Alicia Canter/The Guardian
Photo credit: Alicia Canter/The Guardian

Related tags: Jamie oliver, Awards

Chefs Jamie Oliver, Danny Wallace and Tommy Banks were among the winners at the 2019 Observer Food Monthly (OFM) Awards, which took place last night (17 October) in London.

The annual ceremony, now in its 16th​ year, ‘celebrates the best in food and drink’ from across the industry and was hosted by Observer restaurant critic Jay Rayner and food writer Nigella Lawson.

There were 17 categories in total, with some voted for by readers and others by a panel of judges.

Readers named Jamie Oliver (who this year saw his UK restaurant group collapse) Best Food Personality, while Best New Cookbook was given to 2017 MasterChef winner Saliha Mahmood Ahmed for her Indo-Persian cookbook Khazana.

Best Restaurant was presented to The Oystermen Seafood Bar & Kitchen in London; and Tommy Banks scooped the Observer Food Monthly Local Hero award.

The judge-voted categories saw pastry chef Danny Wallace from Manchester restaurant Kala was named Young Chef of the Year, while food writer Claudia Roden won the coveted Lifetime Achievement award.

Receiving the Best Food Personality award, Oliver said: "I am utterly humbled and grateful to receive this award.

“It's all the more special as this year marks the 20th anniversary of The Naked Chef - two decades of making TV shows, writing cook books and campaigning for a better food system, with so many highs and lows along the way.

“It remains an absolute honour to be able to do a job I love. Bringing people together through the joy of food and cooking, bringing them closer to where food comes from, and to understanding how it affects our bodies, is more important now than ever."

A posthumous prize was also given to Andrew Fairlie, the first recipient of the prestigious Roux Scholarship in 1984, who was honoured with the Editors Award.

“OFM readers have again shown brilliant taste, voting in larger numbers than ever and supporting their favourite food and drink heroes to produce another stunning set of winners,” said Observer Food Monthly editor Allan Jenkins.

“From a seafood bar in London and Sunday lunch in Bristol, to fast Chinese food in Cheltenham and a bar championing local craft beers in Birmingham; our 16th year celebrates the best of the UK.

“Inspiring stories also honour the work of Refugee Community Kitchen, with the lifetime achievements of Claudia Roden and Andre Fairlie championed alongside Manchester’s Danny Wallace and Yorkshire’s Tommy Banks.”

The winners in each category are as follows:

Reader-voted categories

  • Best restaurant ​– The Oystermen Seafood Bar & Kitchen
  • Best cheap eats​ – 288 Bar & Wok
  • Best Sunday lunch​ – The Bank Tavern
  • Best new cookbook​ – Khazana, Saliha Mahmood Ahmed
  • Best ethical food project (supported by M&S Food) ​– The Clean Kilo
  • Best independent retailer​ – field&flower 
  • OFM local hero ​– Tommy Banks
  • Best place to drink​ – 1000 Trades
  • Best Instagram ​– One Pound Meals
  • Best food personality (supported by Grana Padano)​ – Jamie Oliver

Judge-voted categories

  • Best producer (supported by M&S Food)​ – Jess's Ladies Organic Farm
  • Best newcomer in food and drink ​– Master Wei
  • Outstanding achievement​ – Refugee Community Kitchen
  • Young chef of the year​ – Danny Wallace
  • Lifetime achievement (supported by Milk & More) ​– Claudia Roden
  • Best reader’s recipe ​– Kimchi Jigae

Editors award

  • Editors award ​– Andrew Fairlie

Related topics: Business & Legislation

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