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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 20 February 2016
NEWS 10 THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 20 FEBRUARY 2016 DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM Top restaurants in Australia for 2016 The Greek restaurants that made the cut THEODORA MAIOS Building their own culture of excellence across Australia, an impressive number of Greek (or Greek-owned) restaurants have been voted among the best 500 restaurants in Australia according to the 2016 list of Australia's Top Restaurants, compiled by Qantas and AFR (Australian Financial Review) earlier this month. Interestingly, no Greek restaurants were nominated from the ACT. With 113 new entries from all over the country, this year's competition was high; nevertheless, in consultation with a distinguished Australia-wide panel of Good Food Guide editors, reviewers and industry experts, Qantas and AFR shortlisted those restaurants that displayed a high level of quality and consistency across the whole gamut of the dining experience - ranging from the fresh produce on their seasonal menus to the selection of their wines and beverages. According to the AFR announcement, the renowned food and restaurant writers Terry Durack and Jill Dupleix returned as the 2016 Australia's Top Restaurants' directors to put together the George’s on Waymouth: “George’s currently lists approximately 25 wines from Greece showcasing varietals that originate from the mainland and island of Greece such as Amyndeon in Northern Greece, the Peloponnese and the islands of Santorini, Cephalonia & Crete,” says owner George Kasimatis. “It’s important to me that I am able to offer these wines in my venue to share the love and passion that originates from my heritage.” prestigious list covering every level of dining. "What's great about so many of the new entries is that they are fiercely independent, small-business operators with passionate conviction about their offering, and 'diffusion label' second openings by restaurateurs with one successful restaurant under their belts, rather than the traditional expansion of large restaurant groups," Terry Durack added. But that's not all for the Greek restaurants that have made the cut. They will now be asked to compete against some iconic and innovative venues all over the country for their ability to consistently deliver world class standards across every aspect of the dining experience. Those successful will be included in the list of Australia's Top 100 Restaurants, which will be announced on 2 May, 2016 at a gala award ceremony in Sydney showcasing the very best of Australia on a world stage. Here are some of the 500 nominated restaurants that feature Greek-influenced menues and/or stock a variety of Greek wine selections, in no particular order: A La Grecque Aireys Inlet (VIC) www.alagrecque.com.au/ Alpha Sydney CBD (NSW) www.alpharestaurant.com.au/ The Apollo Pott’s Point, Sydney (NSW) www.theapollo.com.au/ Brika Northbridge, Perth (WA) www.brika.com.au/ Chloe’s Restaurant Adelaide (SA) Chloe’s Restaurant: “Food is to be enjoyed with family and friends,” says Nick Papazahariakis, who has shaped the Adelaide food scene with his iconic restaurant for more than 30 years. “We do what we do best – satisfying our customers - and that’s what’s most important to us.” www.chloes.com.au/ Chris's Beacon Point Apollo Bay (VIC) www.chriss. com.au/home.html Elyros Camberwell, Melbourne (VIC) www.elyros.com.au/ Epocha Carlton, Melbourne (VIC) www.epocha.com.au/ The European Melbourne CBD (VIC) www.theeuropean.com.au/ Gazi Melbourne CBD (VIC) gazirestaurant.com.au/ Georges on Waymouth Adelaide CBD (SA) www.georgesonwaymouth. com.au/ Hellenika Nobby Beach, Gold Coast (QLD) www.//hellenika.com.au/ Ipsos Lorne (VIC) www.ipsosrestaurant.com.au/ Lady of Ro Subiaco (WA) www.facebook.com/pages/Lady-of-Ro/757382367691724 The Press Club Melbourne CBD (VIC) www.thepressclub.com.au/ Yots Greek Taverna Cullen Bay, Darwin (NT) www.yots.com.au/ A La Grecque and Ipsos restaurant: “We have been in the restaurant business since 1976, and the Greek influence on our menus is strong and apparent but with a modern twist; incorporating fresh seasonal produce from Australia with imported wines from Greece,” says owner Pam Talimanidis, who together with her husband Kosta and sons Dominic and Alex own two of the winning restaurants, A La Grecque and Ipsos. “You have to adjust and move with the times incorporating the best from both cultures.” The Press Club - Hellenic Republic – Gazi: “By the age of 14, I wanted to be a chef but it was only when I became a head chef that I discovered a deep-seated love of Greek food. I knew instinctively that this was ME as a chef and I realised how lucky I was to have been given such a powerful inheritance. It’s all about food in the middle of the table that’s shared between friends and family; that’s the Hellenic way, the Hellenic spirit,” says George Calombaris, whose three restaurants in Victoria have also made the prestigious list.
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