Grazing at Gundaroo took the “restaurant of the year” award in the Restaurant and Catering association awards announced this week.
Nominations for the industry awards are accepted from restaurants themselves, or from consumers. Restaurants must pay to enter, up to $310, depending on the category. Then one or two anonymous judges visit the restaurants and judge them against 55 criteria.
Grazing, in a historic hotel at Gundaroo, is run by chef Kurt Neumann, with a refined country-style menu. It won the fine-dining category in the awards, for which Sage in Braddon, and Watersedge on the lake in front of Old Parliament House were also finalists.
Top Euro eatery Pulp Kitchen won the European category, with Rubicon, a very good fine diner, named as a finalist.
Manuka long-stayer Abell’s Kopi Tiam was judged best Asian, over Soju Girl in the city and Wild Duck in Kingston.
And Tosolini’s, which has occupied its Bailey Corner in the city for more than 25 years, was named best breakfast restaurant. Tosolini’s was also a finalist in the “informal” Italian restaurant category, which was won by Italian and Sons in Braddon. Santa Lucia in Swinger Hill was another finalist in the category (with its sister restaurant in Kingston judged best new restaurant).
In the “contemporary Australian” category, Pistachio, a small neighbourhood restaurant run by owner-chef David Keeley in Torrens, took the top gong.
The consumer vote award went to Charlie’s Sala Thai in Tuggeranong.