The finalists have been announced in the Queenstown Hospitality Awards and locals are being invited to vote for their favourite place to dine out.
The finalists represent the top-notch dining establishments in the city as voted by the hospitality industry.
Ben Bayly’s Arrowtown restaurant Aosta is a small 50 seat restaurant that brings a taste of Northern Italy to the gold-rush village. The restaurant is nominated in the category of outstanding restaurant, and best front of house team. It picks up a third nomination for its wine and beverage list.
Also receiving three nominations is central Queenstown eatery Blue Kanu. Famed for blending Pacifica and Asian styles together to create what they call “Polynasia”, the restaurant is also nominated for outstanding restaurant, and best front of house team. It picks up its third nomination for ambience and design.
Aosta and Blue Kanu will be going up against Ode Wanaka, Rātā and The Bunker who are also nominated for the outstanding restaurant award.
The best chefs in the region have been recognised with Ainsley Rose Thompson of The Dishery; Corey Hume from True South Dining Room at the Rees Hotel; Lucas Parkinson of Ode Wanaka and Yann Robert of Jervois Steak House all up for the outstanding chef accolade.
Great cafes are not lacking in the region with Bespoke Kitchen, Halo, The Boat Shed, Cafe & Bistro and Yonder all finalists in the category of outstanding cafe.
It’s been an especially tough year for the industry around the country, but those looking for a place to get together with friends won’t be disappointed with the region’s assortment of top-notch bars recognised.
Ferg’s Bar, Little Blackwood, Sundeck and The World Bar are all contenders for the title of best bar, while Akarua Wines & Kitchen by Artisan, Amisfield, Gibbston Valley and The Winery Restaurant at Mt Difficulty are all recognised in the category of best winery restaurant.
In a new category for 2021 Love Chicken, Margo’s, Taco Medic and Tanoshi are all nominated for Outstanding Casual Dining/Street Food.
The Southern Lakes general public are also able to vote for their favourite establishment in the People’s Choice Award category.
Seventeen awards will be given to the best of the region’s hospitality industry. From crew members, to suppliers, to establishments – the best of the best will be celebrated for their contribution to creating a world-class hospitality scene in the Queenstown and Southern Lakes area.
CEO Marisa Bidois says, “Queenstown is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to dining out, offering exceptional experiences in some of the world’s most stunning settings.
“It is a great opportunity to remind locals, domestic visitors and soon Australians of all the incredible options for dining they have to choose from.
“We believe it’s important to shine a light on our industry and make sure we are recognised for the contribution we make to our community and economy.
“With all categories keenly contested, this year’s winners truly exemplify what it means to be at the top of their respective categories.”
Voting closes on Sunday, 25 April at 5.00pm and winners will then be announced at the awards evening on Monday, 3 May at the Skyline in Queenstown.
The Queenstown Hospitality Awards Finalists 2021
Meadow Fresh Outstanding Barista
Benedicte Greenland, Captains Restaurant
Brad Lewis, Joe’s Garage Queenstown
Laura Fisher, Johnny Crema
Tara Murray, Vudu Cafe & Larder
Restaurant Association of NZ Outstanding Bartender
Matthew Shone, Smiths Craft Beer House
Max Watkins, The Bunker
Shaun White, The Grille by Eichardt’s
William Prior, Attiqa/Sundeck
Restaurant Association of NZ Outstanding Front of House Team
Aosta Blue Kanu
White + Wong’s Queenstown
Antipodes Outstanding Maitre d’
Emma Fitzpatrick, The Bunker Graeme Allan, Botswana Butchery
Hayden Davidson, Jervois Steak House Oksana Radu, Blue Kanu
Mt Cook Alpine Salmon Emerging Chef
Giulio Barducci, Aosta
Mandeep Singh, Botswana Butchery Marion Apin, Rātā
Nathan Young, Sherwood
Southern Hospitality Outstanding Chef
Ainsley Rose Thompson, The Dishery
Corey Hume, True South Dining Room, The Rees Hotel
Lucas Parkinson, Ode Wanaka
Yann Robert, Jervois Steak House
Menulog Outstanding Street Food/Casual Dining
Love Chicken Margo’s
Taco Medic Tanoshi
Bidfood Outstanding Café
The Boat Shed Cafe
Restaurant Association of NZ Outstanding Bar
Little Blackwood Sundeck
The World Bar
Restaurant Association of NZ Wine & Beverage List
Bannockburn Hotel – Wine Country Restaurant & Bar Botswana Butchery
The Lodge Bar
Restaurant Association of NZ Outstanding Winery Restaurant
Akarua Wines & Kitchen by Artisan Amisfield
The Winery Restaurant, Mt Difficulty
OneMusic Outstanding Ambience & Design
Blue Kanu Boardwalk
Nest Kitchen & Bar Paddy Gaddy
Restaurant Association of NZ Outstanding Regional Establishment
Bannockburn Hotel – Wine Country Restaurant & Bar La Rumbla
The Chop Shop Food Merchants
Eftpos NZ Outstanding Restaurant
Aosta Blue Kanu
McCarthy Outstanding Sales Rep
Anna Hobbs, Asahi Premium Beverages
Karen Bisacre, Pernod Ricard
Juleon Green, Proof & Company
Juanita Hart, Red + White Cellar
Skyline Queenstown Outstanding Supplier
Cardrona Distillery Crisp