NamakShamak has always been working and associated with The Food Bloggers Association of India, in its earliest days in 2011 or so . From participating in product sampling and reviews to restaurant reviews, we were priviledged to be a part of FBAI.
But due to personal constraints, we never got a chance to attend their Food Blogger awards. After missing them a couple of years, we finally attended them in 2014. But missed being on the winning pedestal. That was when we knew, we had to work more.
Then begun and endless chase to achieve the perfection and working on our nicheness. Regional Khandeshi Recipes.
So after almost two years, we felt we were ready to atleast qualify to be in their race.
To our surprise and nervousness together, we had industry stalwarts judging our blogs. From top chefs like Vicky Ratnani , Ranveer Brar to Food experts Rushina Ghildiyal, Food Critics and writers, Kunal Vijaykar, Rocky Singh, Mayur Sharma, and Rashmi Uday SIngh and many others.
I got the first sign of serendipity when a Comment on Misal Pav popped. It was from Rocky SIngh..He loved the recipe and planned to try it.
Second came a pop up notification and a retweet from Rashmi Uday SIngh. On Khandeshi Bharli Vangi.
And I knew, if not anything, NamakShamak did manage to garner attention to my Regional Food. It was like a recognition as much worthy as an award.
The evening was a nervous start. JW Mariott Juhu. the lights and the energy was overwelming. But Saloni Malkani, the co founder of FBAI along with Sameer Malkani made us al feel at ease.
Connecting with fellow bloggers was so much fun too. it opened so many aspects of food. The evening was a nervous start. JW Mariott Juhu. the lights and the energy was overwelming. But Saloni Malkani, the co founder of FBAI along with Sameer Malkani made us al feel at ease.
Connecting with fellow bloggers was so much fun too. it opened so many aspects of food.
As the evening begun with few presentations from Godrej Tyson foods and other professionals, we steered towards the Awards ceremony….
It was time for Regional Category, and we had Kunal Vijaykar standing on stage to announce it. We knew the Parsi Bawi Bride had been winning it since inception. And there were many more blogs in the race. Eventually, we got up with jittering shaky legs when First Runner Up announced us, Harshada Sandhan and Sonali Raut from Namakshamak. I missed the stairs and directly jumped on the stage out of excitement and later embarassment. But It was such a elated feeling to receive it from Kunal Vijaykar, who we have always been watching on his popular TV Show ” the Foodie”.
Once the Awards were done with and dinner cocktails served, we thought we can now indulge in some wine and food, now that all the battles are won and the butterflies that were wrecking a havoc in out tumms had finally decided to settle down.
The Mariott Food was a class apart. Right from the Flavorful Indian Biryanis and gravies to the Mango pulp filled ravioli and the desserts. it was a culinary delight.
IFBA 2016, indeed changed a lot for us… From being a recognised food blog to recognition of Regional Recipes, it gave us a leverage and a direction to focus on. That was the start of the upward swing in our learning curve.