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INDIAN SUMMER ALL YEAR ROUND IN WESTON THANKS TO ASH ALI’S GREAT NEW RESTAURANT AND TAKEAWAY!
EVERYBODY longs for the glow of some warm and welcoming sunshine over the autumn period, especially when we’ve been shivering on our sofas instead of basking on the beach during the traditionally mixed months of July and August!
The good news for Weston-super-Mare and its suburbs is there IS an Indian Summer to be enjoyed all year round, and you can find it at the very spot where the old Viceroy Restaurant at 57 Whitecross Road (BS23 1EJ) once proudly stood.
Those premises have now been taken over by Ash Ali, together with his business partner Anesye Lauret. Ash has long been established in the London and Luton areas with several successful restaurants to his name and 17 years’ experience in the food and beverages industry behind him.
Anesye, who hails from the beautiful Reunion Island neighbouring Mauritius, has herself clocked up five years’ of service to the industry, which is why opening the new Indian Summer restaurant in Weston-super-Mare is not in the least bit daunting, just “exciting and challenging”.
Ash smiled: “I am really looking forward to bringing a fresh look to the business. The old Viceroy will be entirely refurbished both inside and out; it will look modern, stylish and fresh with lime green colour and Vanilla Mist.
“There will be approximately 85 seats and a waiting area next to the bar and as well as offering a full a la carte menu at all times, we’ll have on offer a children’s menu for young diners and a new four-course Banquet menu.
EXTENSIVE BEVERAGE LIST
“My belief is that good drink should complement good food and therefore our customers can choose from an extensive beverage list, which includes many wines, to complement Indian cuisine, and a good selection of beers and spirits.”
Ash says Indian Summer Restaurant has the capacity to seat over 80 people at any one time, meaning large private parties and functions, from sporting and wedding, to birthday and business affairs, can easily be catered for.
“If you are looking for authenticity, ethnic fusion and fresh, made-to-order food items, you have come to the right place!” he insisted. “At Indian Summer we recognise that our customers want to participate with the food experience and that they wish to feel they are ordering products with real value, which have a high degree of freshness and customisation.
“Indian Summer offers imaginative and expertly-cooked modern Indian cuisine and a mouthwatering selection of traditionally-cooked Indian dishes, with the emphasis being on flavour in an elegant and relaxed environment.
“We are striving to create a restaurant with real Indian cuisine from the many regions of India in an appealing ambience, with friendly service and stylish hospitality. Attention to detail is central to the ethos behind Indian Summer, so we apply the highest standards throughout in order to maximise the customers’ experience.
“Our Indian breads, for example, are cooked in the unique Tandoori style using a clay oven.”
When it comes to flexibility and versatility, staff at Indian Summer are always ready to greet you, Mondays to Sundays between 11.30am and 2.30pm, and again from 5.30pm until 11.30pm. And to cap it all they offer a takeaway service too.
They can be contacted on 01934 628440 or 01934 251115.
FORMER BBC Radio Bristol football commentator Alistair Bruce-Ball is now a familiar voice over the airwaves with Radio 5 Live. Harry Parkinson posed some questions for him.
Q. How old were you when you decided you wanted to be a commentator?
Ali. I didn’t really decide I wanted to be a commentator until I got to BBC Radio Bristol and one Friday afternoon Geoff Twentyman just dropped the bombshell and said I was going to be commentating on Bristol Rovers the following day. He did it like that because he didn’t want me to get nervous thinking about it all week and I absolutely loved it and just took it from there. I think I knew I always wanted to work in sport because I’ve always loved all sports since I was a little boy, and as my Mum always reminds me, I famously wrote in one of my school assignments at the age of 7 that my ambition was to become the next Des Lynam and present Grandstand! I didn’t quite manage that but I absolutely love what I do.
Q. Do you have a favourite team?
Ali. These days, no, and as a BBC commentator we shouldn’t admit to supporting a team anyhow because some fans might be unhappy if we get sent to commentate on them and could accuse us of bias! Ipswich Town was my team growing up; I got into them in the late 70s, early 80s, when they had that great side that won the FA Cup and UEFA Cup under Bobby Robson. I still keep an eye out for their results today but very rarely get to watch them as I now live this side of the country.
Q. Who in the world would you most like to meet?
Ali. Funnily enough although my main job is as a football commentator, I also commentate on golf for Radio 5 Live and one of my real heroes as a kid was Seve Ballesteros. I still find it so inspirational, watching old footage of Seve in his pomp, just the sheer genius, sense of adventure and wonderful charisma that he brought to the sport and of course he was such an integral figure in Europe, finally getting the upper hand over the USA in the Ryder Cup when I was growing up, so I would love to meet Seve. It’s great to hear that he is now on the long road to recovery having not been very well; he is a real fighter and a true inspiration.
Q. Do you harbour ambitions to be a Match of the Day commentator, or present on TV?
Ali. I would love to have a go at commentating for Match of the Day but commentating on television is a totally different skill from commentating on radio. On radio it’s up to you to paint the pictures because you are the listeners’ eyes, so you have to describe every single thing you see and just let it all come pouring out of your mouth, whereas TV commentary is all about adding to the pictures and picking the right moment to speak. Silence can be just as important as speaking. People can already see the action so you don’t want to tell them the obvious and I think I’d be worried that I would feel the need
to speak too much.
Q. What has been your most exciting or nerve-racking moment as a reporter?
Ali. I think the most exciting moments are always at the really big events. I’ve covered matches at the World Cup in 2006 which was really exciting and I was lucky enough to be sent to Athens in 2004 to cover the Olympics, where you suddenly find yourself reporting on sports you previously didn’t know that much about. I did 3-day eventing, slalom canoeing, shooting and triathlon so that’s pretty nerve-racking because you know lots of people listening at home follow those sports and know them much better than you, so you don’t want to make any mistakes! I think the most exciting event I’ve done though is the Ryder Cup golf in 2004, 2006 and 2008, where we are lucky enough to follow the matches from inside the ropes and at times you’re close enough to the players to pull the clubs out of their hands, so you’ve got to be very careful not to put them off when you’re speaking – you often have to whisper! The atmosphere at the Ryder Cup is incredible and as I’ve never got to commentate on the FA Cup final or the Champions League final, that is probably the golf equivalent.
Q. What is the best game you have covered?
Ali. I can’t think of one particular game that stands out but the real joy of live sport is you never know what’s going to happen whenever you turn up. I did Spurs’ 4-4 draw with Chelsea at White Hart Lane last season which was really exciting and proved a crucial result as Chelsea lost ground on Manchester United in the title race. I always remember one of my very early games for BBC Radio Bristol which was Bristol City’s 4-4 draw away at Notts County in 1999. Mickey Bell scored a stunning fourth goal for City and I went absolutely ballistic with my commentary in that slightly impartial way that local radio commentators can do, but I remember it getting me right out of my seat. And of course all of the games that I did in the World Cup in Germany in 2006, purely and simply because it is the biggest football event of them all and it was wonderful to watch all those sets of fans coming together at games like Australia v Japan, Ghana v Czech Republic and Mexico v Iran. I also did Brazil v Japan and every commentator wants to do a Brazil game!
Q. Who is your favourite commentator, apart from yourself of course?
Ali. John Murray is absolutely superb on Radio 5 Live. I think he more than anyone on our team makes the listener feel as if he is actually sitting in his seat through his fantastic descriptions of all the colour, noise and sights you see at a football ground which surround the match, and that is exactly what a radio commentator is supposed to do. He also has a very dry sense of humour and makes me laugh and it’s always important to remember that the commentary has to be entertainment; that’s the whole point of it.
Q. Your colleague Alan Green is never shy to express an opinion or two during his commentaries! How do you find him off air?
Ali. Alan Green is a lovely chap and although I haven’t done that many games with him he has always been really willing to help me with my commentaries and give me advice on how to improve. You have to learn from everyone around you, not copy them necessarily because each commentator has to have his own unique style, but you can pick up so much valuable experience and information just by listening to the best
commentators at work.
Q. Who is the most famous person you have interviewed?
Ali. It’s not just the privilege of covering top sport that gives me such a buzz but it’s the many wonderful people you meet along the way that makes it for me. But in terms of the most famous? I’d say David Beckham and Tiger Woods are probably the two most illustrious names I have interviewed.
Q. What would you like to do in future times?
Ali. I think I’m really lucky because I absolutely love the job I’m doing now and so haven’t given too much thought to what I want to do further down the line. At the moment I just want to keep improving as a commentator and keep getting sent to all the big events – the Champions League games, the Premier League, the World Cup, the Olympics, the Ryder Cup; it’s all absolutely fantastic and it’s such a privilege to do it all as my job.