Our 2017 Australian Restaurant Guide is out now, celebrating the best eats in Australia. Find it in all good newsagents nationwide.
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From an extra hoppy IPA to a nicely bitter Australian vermouth, these are the drops that are getting us through that final winter month.
The annual food writers’ festival is back with a strong line-up that includes Long Chim’s David Thompson and GT columnist Paulette Whitney.
After launching its first Food and Wine Event in May, Lizard Island resort on the Great Barrier Reef is back with another three days of luxury: A Spice Journey with Shane Delia.
Not all is as it seems at Nora as it shifts from cafe to restaurant, but thanks to joyful sleight of hand and the fun factor it works.
With Sicily's capital slowly being transformed into a vibrant, youthful city, built on a strong Italian culture, we take you through the best places to stay, eat and shop in Palermo.
Spike your next cocktail or sauce with Australian-grown yuzu.
Andrew McConnell transforms Moon Under Water into a Chinese restaurant.
Join us to mark a new era of air travel with Etihad Airways at Shannon Bennett’s celebrated Vue de Monde, at the high end of Melbourne fine dining.
Rice pudding is one of our favourite winter sweets. Try it out all kinds of ways.
A complete overhaul of the Port Douglas resort is unveiled this month.
It's official, winter means lentils, curry and soup.
Sleep tight in a vintage Airstream high above Flinders Lane at Melbourne’s new (novel) hotel.
The classic pork roll is the very definition of an Asian sandwich for most Australians. Resist the urge to use sourdough or other fancy bread in place of Vietnamese bakery rolls; that flaky crunchiness contrasting the lush filling is what it's all about. Leftover pork or chicken from a roast works nicely here, too, as do duck and rare beef.
We’ve made our list, we’ve checked it twice. Here’s how it happened.
A new take on cauliflower cheese, souped up with bacon and turned into tasty fritters. They’re a great way to kick off a dinner party or drinks.
Raise a glass to the winners of this year's annual Restaurant Guide Awards.
Check out the 2009 Australian Restaurant Guide Awards winners
Looking at the establishments covered in this year's Australian Restaurant Guide, produced in association with Electrolux, it seems as though they're more progressive and more interested in tradition than ever before. It might sound like a contradiction in terms, but there are plenty of examples where back-to-barnyard basics and what is called, for want of a better term, molecular gastronomy, the two dominant trends of the moment, appear not only in the same city but in the same restaurant, if not the same menu.
We've learned more about steak over the past 18 months than we had possibly dreamed. Forget rare or medium, do you prefer grain- or grass-fed, or a combination of both? How marbled do you like your wagyu? Those who like their proteins in the top-dollar bracket will no doubt have been pleased, too, with the continued presence of top-grade Spanish hams on entrée menus, not to mention the appearance of genuine Italian-made prosciutto.
And while some chefs are over the moon with the quality of these new imports, others are taking the idea of locally raised produce to heart. Not all are as extreme as Melbourne's 100-Mile Café, which details the average distance its ingredients have travelled to reach the plate, but many, like Sydney's Sean's Panaroma and Glebe Point Diner, have quietly concentrated on finding better producers closer to home. This past winter's bumper truffle harvest certainly makes a strong argument for eating local.
The influence of Spain on our leading chefs is undeniable. Where cooks and food lovers once travelled to France to get a feel for the way fine dining was headed, today they're swarming to San Sebastián, Barcelona and all points in between.
With the local availability of the food chemicals favoured by the likes of El Bulli's Ferran Adrià, foams have been joined on restaurant plates by gels, airs and spheres, and there's little shortage of powders or soils either. That Spanish influence isn't all weird science, though - many chefs are taken with the simple grill-and-serve approach used by the better tapas bars, or the focus on the use of fire and smoke in cooking, as seen at Etxebarri near Bilbao.
Our Iberian friends love a bit of meat with their fish, and vice-versa, and so do we: the return of surf 'n' turf has been no flash in the saucepan, so much so that it's almost a shock to see a piece of fish in a fine-diner not coupled with some sort of beast.
It's been a busy year. The smear is the new stack, biodynamics
is the new organics, locavores have supplanted vegaquarians, slow
is the new fast, duck eggs are the new hen's eggs, bluefoot are the
new chestnut mushrooms, tequila is the new gin, edible flowers are
somehow cool again, and we're just waiting to see someone put a
local twist on the $50 burger bandwagon with a dagwood dog de luxe.
Watch this space.
WORDS PAT NOURSE PHOTOGRAPH JASON LOUCAS
Restaurant of the year
Best new talent
New restaurant of the year
Regional restaurant of the year
Sommelier of the year
Outstanding contribution to the industry
Maitre d' of the year
Bar of the year
Wine list of the year
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