Aziz Rahman has big plans for his new restaurant in the Iffley Tree Hotel – banquets, thali nights, celebrations, functions and parties, it’s all going on.
And this weekend is no different because on Sunday he is hosting The Lord Mayor of Oxford’s Charity Banquet to raise money for climate change. Guests will enjoy a sumptuous five-course Indian banquet in aid of Asylum Welcome and the Lord Mayor’s Climate Change Fund.
Local residents in Iffley must be besides themselves now that The Aziz has set up shop there, it’s reputation speaking for itself. After all, The Aziz dominated the Cowley Road for 25 years before moving to Headington, and now The Iffley Tree Hotel.
“I really do feel like this is a fresh start”
Having opened there in November, after refurbishing the dining room extensively, Mr Rahman is very excited about the move, and has big plans to put The Aziz firmly back on Oxford’s culinary map.
His first move was coaxing his former award-winning chef Nurul Amin out of retirement, and with Nurul back in the kitchens, Mr Rahman is convinced he’s onto a winning formula.
“The new restaurant here has such great potential. It’s a brilliant location near the city centre and ring road, so our customers from the Cowley Road days can visit, and has a lovely garden and bar.
“It needed a lot of work but we have redecorated and given it a bit of life and ambience ready for our customers, so yes I really do feel like this is a fresh start.
And with his spring menus about to be launched Mr Rahman is confident of recreating his glory days on the Cowley Road.
“We are serving classic Bangladeshi cuisine mainly, but on Sundays we have a roast and an international buffet.”
And with the take away and home delivery business already booming, things are off to a great start.
“We would rather people came in to eat, so that we can serve them food straight from the kitchen and nicely presented, but we are not going to turn people away if they want it delivered,” Mr Rahman laughs.
He is also introducing a breakfast club, thali Mondays, Bangla poetry evenings and aims to celebrate the festive seasons in style. “The locals are already very supportive and we get a lot of walkers going to Iffley Lock, so it’s just about spreading the word now and letting everybody else know we are here,” he says.
But first it’s Sunday’s gala dinner: “We are very pleased to be supporting The Lord Mayor of Oxford, Cllr Craig Simmons, and Lady Mayoress, Elise Benjamin, in aid of Asylum Welcome and the Lord Mayor’s Climate Change Fund,” Mr Rahman says.
Things are kicking off at 4.30pm with live music from The Mighty Redox, including a special guest appearance from the Lord Mayor himself! Dinner is being served at 7pm.
Owing to a few last minute cancellations there are still a few tickets available for the Sunday fundraiser. Go to https://www.wegottickets.com/event/497751
For more details on The Aziz go to http://aziz.uk.com