Les Bistronomes and Raku have been named Australia's best European and Asian restaurants respectively in the 2023 Restaurant and Catering Industry Awards for Excellence.
It tops off a prolific year for the Campbell restaurant, says Les Bistronomes owner and executive chef Clement Chauvin, which swept the pool in the state awards in September winning best restaurant, best European and the premium dining awards.
"It's always great to be acknowledged by these types of awards," he said.
"It's a nice reward for the whole team here who have worked exceptionally hard this year, and through the past couple of challenging years."
Les Bistronomes also picked up a bronze medal in the premium dining category.
Raku won best Asian restaurant owner and executive chef Hao Chen said they were honoured to receive such a prestigious award.
"This isn't why we do what we do but it feels very special to be recognised," he said.
"It's so great to see Canberra restaurants recognised nationally in awards like this. It shows that not only can we compete with the big guys, but Canberra's restaurant scene is incredibly strong."
He said the hospitality industry has had some challenging years of late.
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"The industry is changing, people are spending less, which makes running a restaurant harder than ever, but we're just as committed as we were when we started because we truly love what we do. Awards like this just give us an extra bit of motivation to keep going," Chen said.
Other ACT restaurants to come home with medals from the awards included: The Boat House, Barton (silver, best contemporary restaurant); Brunello, City (silver, best Italian restaurant); the National Press Club of Australia, Chatham House Restaurant, Barton (silver, best restaurant in a pub/club); Bunny Beans Cafe, Holt (bronze, breakfast restaurant); and The Ginger Group, National Arboretum, Weston (bronze, venue caterer).
Bangalay Dining at Shoalhaven Heads won a silver in the best restaurant in a hotel/resort category.
Sydney's Quay Restaurant won the nation's best restaurant award.
Restaurant and Catering chief executive officer Suresh Manickam said the association was pleased to celebrate the achievements of Australia's most distinguished operators.
"To achieve gold, silver or bronze in the national awards is a testament to each recipient's hard work and dedication to their craft," he said.
"These awards are only made possible by the hard work and dedication of our industry peers. Their ongoing support and enthusiasm for what we do is deeply appreciated."
The annual Awards for Excellence program formally recognises hospitality operators across a broad range of categories who consistently provide exceptional service and demonstrate culinary excellence in their respective fields.
The Restaurant and Catering Awards are the only industry awards with an independent judging system with more than 250 judges reporting to state judge chairs and a national chief judge. A restaurant must be a member of the association to qualify.
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