Last night The Age announced it’s Good Food Awards for 2012.
There will no doubt be rumination and opinion and already I see people commenting on the fact Vue De Monde was awarded 3 hats when in fact it was a construction site at the time of “awarding”. Ignore all that, it’s been an incredible year for Melbournian’s to eat out. If there is not a spot you’ve called your “own” or at least a few places on your list of “must go to eat” then you just aren’t living. Ok, maybe a bit harsh and sure lots of people still enjoy fast food and class that as eating out, but for the rest of us with our taste buds still in tact it’s been an incredible year of openings to suit all tastes and budgets.
There appeared to be a lot more sponsor & Masterchef types at the actual awards than chef’s and actual industry people, but that seems to the beast. I agree with the sentiments of some, that there are so many hardworking apprentices and kitchen hands that could do with a little bit of glamour and one night off (even if generally most kitchens are closed Mondays), than some reality cooking show contestants, but there you have it.
I have to say though that last night I felt a small sense of personal pride. Town Hall Hotel in Fitzroy was awarded 1 hat. Some of you may know I worked there, albeit briefly, in “the pit” (for those not in the industry, the pit is the wet area of a kitchen where dishes are washed) and saw first hand how hard that kitchen worked, also how ordered, clean and smoothly they operated as a team. I’m really pleased for them, and a sneaky little bit pleased to say I worked for a minute in a 1 hatted restaurant.
So without further adieu:
Restaurant of the Year: Attica, Ripponlea
Chef of the Year: Dan Hunter (Royal Mail Hotel)
Regional Restaurant of the Year: Loam, Drysdale
Best New Regional Restaurant: Mr Carsisi, Kyneton
Best New Restaurant: Golden Fields, St Kilda
Young Chef of the Year: Josh Murphy (Cumulus Inc)
Sommelier of the Year: Bengt Baumgartner (European)
Service Excellence Award: Jason Lui (Flower Drum)
Professional Excellence: Neil Perry
Award for Innovation: TOYS Collective
Sustainability Award: Maurice Esposito (Esposito @ Toofey’s and Saint Peter’s)
Donlevy Fitzpatrick Award: Gerald’s Bar, Carlton North
BYO Restaurant of the Year: Osteria La Passione, Richmond
Diners’ Choice Award: Cutler & Co, Fitzroy
Legend Award: Philippe Mouchel (P M 24)
Best Short Wine List: Merricote, Northcote
Regional Wine List of the Year: Lake House, Daylesford
Wine List of the Year: Spice Temple, Southbank
Dish of the Year: Barbecue Spare Ribs (Dandelion) – MUST GO!
Attica, Jacques Reymond, Royal Mail Hotel, Vue De Monde
Cafe Di Stasio, Circa the Prince, Cutler & Co, Ezard, Flower Drum, Grossi Florentino, Lake House, Loam, Matteo’s, MoMo, Movida, Pearl, The Point Albert Park, The Press Club, Provenance, Rockpool Bar & Grill, Stefano’s, Stokehouse, Tea Rooms of Yarck, Verge
Abla’s, Annie Smithers Bistrot, The Atlantic, Bacash, Becco, Bella Verdere, Bistro Guilluame, Bistro Vue, Cecconi’s Cantina, Centonove, Chris’s Restaurant, Church St Enoteca, Cicciolina, Coda, Comme Kitchen, Cumulus Inc, Dandelion, David’s, Donovans, Eleonore’s, Embrasse, Esposito @ Toofey’s, Gills Diner, Golden Fields, The Grand, Il Bacaro, The Italian, Koots Salle a Manger, La Petanque, Livingroom, Longrain, The Long Table, Maha, Mercer’s, Montalto, MoVida Aqui & Terraza, Neilsons, Oscar W’s Wharfside, Paladarr, PM 24, Port Phillip Eastate, Sapore, Sarti, Scorched, Shoya, Simone’s Restaurant, Spice Temple, Sunnybrae, Tempura Hajime, Ten Minutes by Tractor, Town Hall Hotel, Vin Cellar, Villa Gusto, Wardens Restaurant, Whirrakee Resturant, Yu-u
Congratulations to all the chef’s, kitchen hands, dishwashers, apprentices and floor staff/FOH that work in all of the restaurants listed above, especially the dish washers.