WHARF Rd Restaurant and Bar in Nowra has won a Chef’s Hat at The Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Guide Awards.
To be honoured with a hat in the prestigious dining awards restaurants must rate 15 and above out
Wharf Rd is the only Shoalhaven restaurant to receive a hat this year.
It has been a big few weeks for restaurateur Dave Campbell and his wife Nicole.
They celebrated their restaurant’s first anniversary a fortnight ago. It also won the 2013 New Restaurant category in the Restaurant and Catering Awards for Excellence.
“I’ve owned restaurants for 10 years and this is the first time I’ve won a hat,” Mr Campbell said.
“But this restaurant is also the first one we’ve had that’s been appropriate to receive a hat.”
The awards took place at The Star casino in Sydney with all the glitz and glamour of a Hollywood red carpet event.
It was attended by many of the state’s top chefs and restaurateurs renowned for their skills at decorating a plate with culinary complexity.
However the main ingredient that earned The Wharf Rd its hat was simplicity.
Mr Campbell has earned a reputation for seeking out fine local produce where possible.
While details regarding the scoring are not given out, during the awards Mr Campbell caught up with the editor of the Good Food Guide Joanna Savill.
He discovered that it was how
the Wharf Rd lets the “amazing
produce” speak for itself that helped it score so well in the regional category.
Local and fresh produce along with good service and a great atmosphere is the mix that led to success.
“It felt really good to win a hat,” Mr Campbell said.
“We didn’t build this restaurant to get a hat or accolades but it’s really nice for us, and our staff and our producers.
“We have only had the restaurant open for a year so this is a huge achievement for us.
“I thank my wife Nicole – she was a big part of the restaurant design and putting it all together.
“She’s a great support.”
Mr Campbell described Wharf Rd as approachable restaurant.
“That’s partly why we won the award. You can come in for a lunch, dinner. You can still get a $10 meal or a beer for $5.50 and we’re not about to go changing that.”