Good Food Guide 20201 October 2019 – posted in: Restaurant, Uncategorized

Good Food Guide 2020 is upon us!

It’s hard to get a hat, in fact, it is a real accomplishment to be in the Guide.  The Good Food Guide Awards had a shake-up of sort three years ago and went national. The competition is fierce to make it into the book and we are proud to be listed for the twelfth year.

The Good Food Guide is an annual assessment of the fantastic dining establishments we have in Australia. It is a much-loved celebration, first published in 1980, of the best in an extraordinarily competitive and flexible field. The 2020 edition, released today, is the third annual national edition, with those coveted hats sparingly awarded across Australia. 

You can argue one way or another about several restaurants, but overall the Good Food Guide is a celebration of Australian Dining. When you get awarded a hat it’s clear you are doing a great job but you need to keep working hard to keep it. Every year each restaurant is assessed through an exacting process; one cannot assume that a restaurant is locked in for a hat for years to come. Cupitt’s received a hat in 2015. It is our view that our food, atmosphere, ambience, service and WOW factor have been on the up and up ever since that moment but we have not achieved a hat status again. 

We (the Cupitt’s) are perfectly happy with this and hope our hard-working team are too. Ultimately for us, the GFG review is a chance for our amazing team to be recognised nationally for all they contribute to our business. The success we had in 2015 was a wonderful opportunity for exposure, but there is no denying we felt increased pressure to perform and meet high expectations of what a ‘hatted’ restaurant should be. The following year we did not retain the Hat status but we felt freedom in how we run the business, although we were saddened that our chefs were disappointed with not retaining the Hat rating.  

For us, our restaurant is about creating an atmosphere and environment to enjoy food, celebrate life and connect with one another. Our food breathes the seasons and parades the produce that is available on the South Coast. We are very proud of the volume and quality of products we have grown and made at Cupitt’s. Our chefs create menus that showcase these products in the best light possible. Our Front of House team is dedicated to taking care of our guests; they probably make you laugh, share their local knowledge with you and show you are good time but ultimately they want to ensure you leave having had a relaxing experience. We value the opinions of critics but we value our loyal customers and our happy team the most. That is the real sign of success for us. 

We want to take the opportunity to say a huge thank you to the Chefs for their creativity, their teamwork their passion and appreciation for produce. Thank you to the Front of House team for the way they care and look after our customers, thank you to every person on the production side making or growing the food and drink we enjoy and the incredible administration team who ensure the customer experience is wonderful right from the beginning. It is wonderful to work alongside you all every day. 

Congratulations to all the amazing businesses out there on their success. We would love to congratulate Caveau in Wollongong for consistently receiving One Hat in the Good Food Guide and flying the flag for the South Coast/Illawarra Region.

Here is our Review in the 2020 Good Food Guide.


All the ingredients for a long lunch to remember 

Rain can’t dampen the bright, lively atmosphere here. The floor-to-ceiling windows frame  highlighter-green fields and the sprawling dining room buzzes with large groups while children and dogs roam the deck of the adjacent Budawang Bar. Drink in the view with a glass of wine, cocktails using ingredients from the garden or estate-brewed beer (the Mosaic Session Ale is a winner). Before changing your focus to your plate and Russell Chinn’s pretty, produce driven dishes. Chinn’s classical French training is evident in elements such as the impossibly smooth, light-as-air sweetcorn veloute that accompanies a poached prawns entree, and the chargrilled Rangers Valley wagyu rump steak with choron sauce and crisp potato matchsticks. Smoked tomatoes from the garden top this modern take on steak frites. There are some fun retro revivals, too, such as avocado ice-cream that cleverly pairs with yellowfin tuna and black olive puree, and the sherbert that makes the summer berries with champagne sorbet and deconstructed elderflower panna cotta, sing.  Stop by the cellar door for a cheese tasting, and buy some budawang brie for the road. 

Sweetcorn Veloute with Poached Prawn and Zucchini
Rangers Valley Wagyu Rump, Smoked Tomatoes, Choron Sauce
Summer Berries, Champagne Sorbet, Elderflower Panna Cotta

Everything you need to know about how the GFG works from the perspective of the judges can be found HERE. 

You can read all the details of the top winners here, the individual winners including Maggie Beer who won a Vittoria Legend of the Year  here  and the full list of Hats here.