The nation’s best place to eat was revealed on Wednesday 17 August at the Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Awards. Sydney’s Momofuku Seiobo took out the top spot, named Australia’s Restaurant of the Year in the national restaurant awards based on independent reviews.

Momofuku Seiobo, led by Barbados-born chef Paul Carmichael, taps the culture of Barbados for inspiration, producing a cuisine that’s fresh, flavoursome and completely unexpected.

“Finding fine-dining Barbadian food this good in the Caribbean itself would be a revelation,” said GT chief restaurant critic and deputy editor Pat Nourse. “Finding it in Australia is astonishing in the best of ways.”

“This is real for me but it’s not about me – this kind of food needs a voice,” said Carmichael. “And we’re just getting started.”

The gala dinner hosted by Gourmet Traveller’s editor Anthea Loucas Bosha and Nourse, was held in Sydney at David Thompson’s soon to open Long Chim.

Ben Shewry of Attica in Melbourne took out the peer-voted Chef of the Year while Australia’s Regional Restaurant of the Year went to Aaron Turner’s new Geelong restaurant, Igni, and the nation’s Bar of the Year went Adelaide’s new Pink Moon Saloon. Back in Melbourne, Andrew Joy from Marion in Fitzroy scored Matre d’ of the Year with his witty and informed hospitality, while chef Thi Le of Melbourne Vietnamese restaurant Anchovy is the country’s Best New Talent.

In Sydney, Restaurant Hubert picked up both New Restaurant of the Year and Wine List of the Year, while Dan Sharp of Sixpenny was named Sommelier of the Year. Indigenous author and educator Bruce Pascoe was recognised for his Outstanding Contribution to Hospitality, the guide’s editors citing his eloquent, persuasive revelations, which have inspired his audience to accept, appreciate and adopt indigenous ingredients and food culture.

“I think the diversity of the backgrounds of the winners of these awards says really positive things about the new direction of restaurants and hospitality in Australia,” said Loucas Bosha.

“Australia punches well above its weight internationally with the quality of its food and wine. Best of all, we keep it fun, and that’s what Gourmet Traveller is all about – bringing people together to share the good times,” said Nourse.

Gourmet Traveller Restaurant awards winners:

Restaurant of the Year: Momofuku Seiobo, Sydney

Chef of the Year: Ben Shewry – Attica, Melbourne

New Restaurant of the Year: Restaurant Hubert, Sydney

Best New Talent: Thi Le – Anchovy, Melbourne

Regional Restaurant of the Year: Igni, Geelong

Bar of the Year: Pink Moon Saloon, Adelaide

Matre D’ of the Year: Andrew Joy – Marion, Melbourne

Wine List of the Year: Restaurant Hubert, Sydney

Sommelier of the Year: Dan Sharp – Sixpenny, Sydney

Outstanding Contribution to Hospitality: Bruce Pascoe, Indigenous author and educator

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