A family-run Italian restaurant in Huddersfield town centre is celebrating a gold award.

Trattoria Domenico, based in the Imperial Arcade, was nominated for Independent Restaurant of the Year in the Pizza Pasta & Italian Food Association awards.

The restaurant, run by the Sicilian di Domenico family, was nominated for the awards by mystery customers.

Undercover judges, who looked at everything from the welcome on the telephone to the quality of the food, the cleanliness of the toilets to the amount of dust on the highest shelves, paid an unannounced visit.

Giuseppe Cina (centre) with Mario D'Esposito (left) and head chef, Domenico di Domenico
Giuseppe Cina (centre) with Mario D'Esposito (left) and head chef, Domenico di Domenico
 

Restaurant director Giuseppe Cina, 22, who runs the restaurant with dad Domenico di Domenico, 44, the head chef, was stunned to be shortlisted.

He was even more amazed to find himself on the same table as celebrity chefs Aldo Zilli and Gino D’Acampo at the black tie awards ceremony at the Lancaster London Hotel.

“It was a brilliant night and totally unexpected and Aldo and Gino even bought me a beer!” said Giuseppe. “It has really inspired me to take the business forward.”

The family, who came to Yorkshire in the late 1990s, opened the restaurant in January 2012. The premises are part of the former Sole Mio restaurant which opened back in 1975.