Exciting news, hot off the red carpet! On Monday night, Gerard and I attended the hospitality industry’s most glittering annual occasion, the Catey Awards. These are akin to the Oscars for the hospitality business and everyone wants the chance of an invite. Every year is a glittering affair and is held at the Grosvenor House Hotel, where 1,000 industry figures can be easily accommodated and catered for. This year proved as enjoyable as previous years, with a great mix of industry colleagues. As always it was a pleasure to meet up with David and Katie Young, from The Cross at Kingussie- I promise we will get to visit Scotland this year! And we had the pleasure of Andrew and Kate McKenzie, of the Vineyard at Stockcross sharing our table with us. Whilst we rarely manage to share a table with our previous business partners, Robin and Judy Hutson, we did manage to hook up at the end of the evening for some fun and celebrations with one of our dearest protégés, Xavier Rousset and his business partner, Aggi.
The reason we were celebrating was two fold….. due in part to Xavier and Aggi having been awarded a Catey for Best Newcomer for their restaurant Texture and also because Gerard scooped a top prize and won one of the most coveted Cateys, the Special Award…… This is a most prestigious award, that has been given every year since 1984 to one individual in recognition of their tremendous achievements, their standing and outstanding contribution to the hospitality industry. Each year there are 18 Cateys awarded, but along with the Catey Life Time Achievement award, this year won by the ever charming, Roy Ackerman, the Special Award is one of the two most prestigious Cateys amongst them all. Gerard joins an elite group of previous winners, including, Sir Rocco Forte, Sir Terence Conran, Jamie Oliver, Gary Rhodes, Silvano Giraldin, Prue Leith and Lord Sebastian Coe (for bringing the Olympic Games to London) to name just a few. Coming so soon after his tremendous win at the World Sommelier Championships in Chile, in April, we are understandably very proud and honoured for Gerard to have been complimented by this great award too. I was already very proud of Gerard and all that he has achieved with sheer determination, drive and passion, but last night was the “icing on the cake”.
Well done Xavier and Aggi- we are very proud of you and are thrilled that Texture is such a great success and thank you, Robin and Judy, for helping us share such a special event- it felt right to all be together again celebrating such a fantastic win.
Bravo to all the Catey winners!