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Inaugural London Restaurant Festival to Take Place 8 - 13 October

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Gourmands from all over the world will be in London October to celebrate the inaugural London Restaurant Festival from 8 to 13 October 2009.

 A citywide celebration of eating out in the capital, the festival is aiming to highlight the fact that food, warmth, conversation, nurturing and sociability are as vital to a city as its transport system, education or health service.

Planned events include Gourmet Odysseys on London buses travelling different routes from course to course, a Vietnamese street food festival and a Dragon’s Den open pitch where would-be restaurateurs try to interest industry tycoons in their business ideas.

 There are plans for a University Challenge-style quiz with top London chefs competing against New York chefs, a food film festival (‘Eat Film’) that will feature restaurants picked to match film plots and Festival Menus in every kind of restaurant.

 The Festival will open with a launch party co-hosted by Vanity Fair magazine at Quaglino’s on 7 October, and end with the London Restaurant Festival Awards at a gala evening on 13 October with food prepared by a team of London’s most inspiring chefs.

 Boris Johnson, Mayor of London, said, “London’s restaurant scene is world-class, with a massive 6,000 eateries. The sheer scale and diversity of the capital’s gastronomic delights is testament to the vibrancy of our city and the many communities living and eating here. Their importance to the capital’s economy cannot be underestimated as they provide a tasty enticement for people who visit, work and live in our city. So it is timely that this exciting new festival has been launched to celebrate all that is best about London’s restaurants.”

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