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Tuesday, September 04, 2007

SMH Good Food Guide Awards 2008

I don't tend to frequent hatted restaurants very often, but the announcement of the annual SMH Good Food Guide Awards is always worth a gander.

It was a pleasant surprise to see a few personal favourites finally reach (or reclaim) one-hat status. Warm congratulations are extended to Oscillate Wildly and Perama, as well as Glebe Point Diner and Three Clicks West, all championing great food in Sydney's inner west.

Commiserations to Bathers' Pavilion, La Sala and Three Weeds, who all lost their one hat status.

Three hats
Bilson's, Claude's, est, Marque, Pier, Quay, Tetsuya's

Two hats
Aria, Becasse, Bentley Restaurant & Bar, Bisto Moncur, Buon Ricordo, Forty One (+1), Guillaume at Bennelong (-1), Icebergs Dining Room & Bar, Lucio's, Pilu at Freshwater, Restaurant Balzac (+1), Rockpool, Sean's Panaroma, Yoshii

One hat
Assiette, Astral, Azuma (+1), Billy Kwong, Bird Cow Fish, Bistro CBD, Bistro Ortolan (+1), Bistrode, The Boathouse on Blackwattle Bay, buzo, Catalina, Fish Face, Flying Fish, Forbes & Burton, Four in Hand Dining Room (+1), Foveaux Restaurant + Bar (+1), Galileo, glass (+1), Glebe Point Diner (+1), Grand National, il piave, Longrain, Lotus, Milsons, Oscillate Wildly (+1), Otto, Pello (-1), Perama (+1), Pier Tasting Room (-1), Restaurant Atelier, Salon Banc (+1), Restuarant Soujourn, Sailors Thai Restaurant, The Wharf, Three Clicks West (+1), Yings

Restaurant of the Year

Related GrabYourFork posts:
SMH Good Food Guide 2007
SMH Good Food Guide 2006
7 comments - Add some comment love

posted by Helen (Grab Your Fork) on 9/04/2007 08:11:00 pm


  • At 9/05/2007 10:51 am, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    It's always interesting to see who they pick for hats.

    have been to:

    Three hats
    est (soap cake used in washroom, how bad is that!)
    Pier (nice view but service was stuck up a bit, fish cooked very well)
    Tetsuya's (most memorable dishes so i can see how they won restaurant of the year, but only white packaged sugar served with coffees, no brown or raw sugar)

    Two hats
    Aria, views aren't that great if you don't get to sit at the windows. service a bit stuck up.
    Forty One (+1), best toilet view in sydney. great views if they don't sit you at the far end room facing a building, service can be a bit stuck up
    Restaurant Balzac (+1),
    Rockpool (long time ago),

    One hat
    Azuma (+1),
    Billy Kwong, cramped uncomfortable seating for high price food. i know she wants to create a hawker style atmosphere but where's the hawker style prices.
    The Boathouse on Blackwattle Bay, great selection of oysters
    Grand National, always crowded but quite reasonable food prices for what you get.
    Oscillate Wildly (+1), great food but very very cosy seating. good personal service but so long a wait list to book and now probably even longer.
    Perama (+1), great food

    simon :-)

  • At 9/05/2007 9:47 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hey Helen - yay for us!

    You should have heard the dramatic "oooooohhhh" from the award crowd on Monday night when Guillaume's lost a hat - very amusing.

    Hope you get into Perama soon - lots of new dishes to try :)

    cheers - Belinda.

  • At 9/06/2007 9:47 am, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Simon, I suspect that under current judging criteria it would be difficult to get three (and probably two) hats without service being a bit stuck up. One man's stuck up is another man's good service. At three hats, it's closer to a Michelin ideal - and that means there is more than just the food.

    I've been to most of the two and three hat rstaurants, and I reckon they did a pretty good job this year. Sydney should have lots of one hat restaurants: casual spots with great food and lower overheads. Bistrode is a great place but you'd never call it fine dining.

    Vindication of the year for me: the casting out of the appallingly pretentious Bathers Pavilion.

    FortyOne and Balzac have both got their act together this year and the elevation is deserved. Marque has been consistently excellent (I got engaged there).

    Interestingly, the general hat slide of French-inspired restaurants was mirrored here in Melbourne this year as well.

  • At 9/06/2007 5:12 pm, Blogger MissK said…

    I'm keen to try Bodega and Sailors Thai plus Palace Chinese for yum cha.

  • At 9/07/2007 1:08 pm, Blogger Nora B. said…

    Hi Helen, thanks for that. I've never been to any of the 3 hats but have been planning to go to Tetsuya's for the longest time. Just waiting to convince a few more of my foodie friends.

    On a different note, I went to a new restaurant last night called "Mission" (Chippendale). I thought the quality of the food was excellent & service prompt (the new waiter Will was very warm and friendly, the older blond lady was professional but rather cold). But I did think that some of portion sizes (e.g. salt & pepper calamari) was a little small, more like "fine dining" size, if you know what I mean.

  • At 9/09/2007 6:24 pm, Blogger Helen (Grab Your Fork) said…

    Hi Simon - Nice work on the list. I keep meaning to get to a lot more places but the temptation to have three cheap but tasty meals instead often wins out :)

    Hi Belinda - Congrats to both you and David and all the team. Yes yes, I must get to Perama again soon. But would I get a table? Your phone must be ringing off the hook :)

    Hi Mr_Gimlet - I, too, was pleased with the influx of one-hatted restaurants. Sydney does lots of good food at the medium-end of the price scale. I never found Bathers pretentious, but maybe I just have a soft spot for Serge, esp his almond tart at the Sydney Food and Wine Fair.

    Hi MissK - Someone actually recommended Palace for yum cha a while ago. And after all these years I still haven't been to Sailors Thai either!

    Hi Nora B - I remember reading a reviews of Mission a few weeks ago. I'd been hoping to get to Glebe Point Diner but I'm guessing there's no chance of that for the next 3 months at least, now!

  • At 9/12/2007 1:32 am, Blogger Chunky Bacon said…

    the hatted restos tend to be French or "Modern Australian"


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