About

IQBAL WAHHAB OBE FRSA 

Iqbal Wahhab was born in Bangladesh and came to Britain at the age of eight months. He was educated in London and is a graduate of the London School of Economics. After working as a journalist in the national press for three years, in 1991 he set up his own PR firm which specialised in food, drink and restaurants and then in 1994 he launched Tandoori Magazine.

He sold out of the magazine to launch the multi award winning Cinnamon Club in 2001 – a restaurant and bar aimed to change the way we view Indian dining. In 2003 he co-authored The Cinnamon Club Cookbook and in 2005 opened the highly successful Roast, a British restaurant and bar in Borough Market.

 

Chair, Autograph ABP www.autograph-abp.co.uk

Chair, Bounce Back www.bouncebackproject.com

Chair, Oxford University Centre for Social Investigation http://csi.nuff.ox.ac.uk/

Awards

On-Trade Business Person of the Year 2008, The Drinks Business

Honorary Doctorate in Business Administration, University of East London

Honorary Doctorate of Science, University of West London

Voted Restaurant Personality of the Year by Menu Magazine

Voted one of the Top 10 Restaurateurs in Britain in an Independent on Sunday survey

Retailer of the Year, Pig and Poultry Marketing awards 2009

Director of the Month January 2010, The Director magazine

Entrepreneur of the Year, Muslim News Awards 2010

Listed in the Caterer Power 100

Listed in GQ’s 100 Most Connected

Listed in The Sunday Times Maserati 100 business start-up mentors

Latest projects:

  • Mentors young people in difficult situations and also aspirant entrepreneurs
  • Works with ex-offenders on getting them into work through Switchback
  • Columnist for The Director

“Iqbal is a restaurateur par excellence, combining a passion for food with an art for communication, fine attention to detail and sound commercial acumen.” – Mark Price Managing Director of Waitrose on waitrose.com

“National Treasure” – The Times

Iqbal received an OBE in the 2010 New Years Honours list for public service and services to the hospitality industry

One Response to About

  1. James Ferguson says:

    Dear Mr Wahhab
    Having read your latest article in my father’s copy of Director Magazine, I felt obliged to reply.
    Firstly let me say it a great to see someone in your position highlighting the appalling state of our nations health. I have been personal training for over 11 years and have witnessed first hand the abuse that some people put their bodies through. Those clients that have become fitter and now lead a healthier lifestyle note how much more enjoyable work is now they have newfound energy levels. I agree that it is paramount that companies start looking after their workforce from a health perspective and that implementing some of the suggestions you lay out in your article would be a great first step. However, getting entire companies to radically change their cultures is going to take time.
    As far as government intervention goes I think we can forget that. The government is more ill informed about how to deal with public health than most institutions. The food pyramid for example, is a sure way of making our nation fatter. Why? Because like most big institutions money talks. If the government is influenced in any way by milk producers, grain producers and pharmaceutical companies this country will never rid itself of its obesity epidemic. It is a viscous cycle starting with the government giving out wrong advice. This is subsequently picked up by the media and then fed to the pubic. The nation will never know better.
    This brings me to the point you make about saturated fats in your article. I am afraid to say that you too have been fooled into thinking saturated fats are bad for the human body. Indeed this could not be further from the truth. For example, human breast milk contains 40-50% saturated fat!!
    I attach three short articles for your further reading if it is an area you would like to research into further.
    http://www.marksdailyapple.com/saturated-fat-healthy/#axzz1lagvqmea

    http://www.charlespoliquin.com/ArticlesMultimedia/Articles/Article/444/Whats_Really_Making_Us_Unhealthy_Hint-_its_not_sat.aspx

    http://www.fourhourworkweek.com/blog/2009/06/06/saturated-fat/

    So, until those in charge of the nation stop the scare mongering and put the correct information into the public domain, nothing much will change and people as well as companies will continue to suffer. Sugar is the biggest offender and until this is recognised, the nation as a whole will continue to get fatter. I believe that once this becomes mainstream knowledge you could see new ventures and horizons opening up over the entire restaurant landscape. In America, this change is already happening, albeit at a very slow rate.
    I would be interested to your response and whether it is something you would like to further discuss. I see from your blog that your exercise regime causes more interest than most and maybe this information will help in your own path to glorious health.
    Kind regards
    James Ferguson

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