Photo credit Twenty Seven Steps/Facebook

The Christchurch hospitality industry has acknowledged the outstanding abilities of its own with the announcement of the winners at the Restaurant Association of New Zealand’s awards for the region.

City bistro, Twenty Seven Steps had an incredible night, receiving accolades for its exceptional service, warm ambiance and classic menu. The restaurant took out awards for front of house team, emerging chef, outstanding chef and outstanding restaurant of the year.

The awards recognise the outstanding hospitality professionals, all of whom are making a positive impact on the local café and dining scene. The Restaurant Association of New Zealand is proud to organise and foster these Awards with the main purpose being to unite, grow and promote the Christchurch hospitality industry.

Bastion of the local community, Hello Sunday received the coveted people’s choice award for establishment of the year.

Housed in an 18th century post office building, the café has become known for its great coffee and day time menu serving as a connection point for the Sydenham community.

Recognition also went out to newcomer Smokey T’ otherwise known as Tristan Anderson, for his pop up BBQ joint. Anderson gave up life as an executive chef at the Dux chain of restaurants just after the earthquake to focus on his unique brand of barbecuing and took out awards for breakthrough talent of the year and pop up establishment.

Creative new fitouts have also been a key feature of a new breed of hospitality establishments in the city, with Amazonita awarded for its outstanding ambience and design.

Individual dedication to the industry and craft were also recognised. Paul Howells at Twenty Seven Steps was awarded outstanding chef and James Quinn of Boo Radley’s voted as outstanding manager of the year.

The coveted Hospitality Hero of the Year was awarded to Michael Turner of Valentino for his dedication to the industry and contributing to the success of Christchurch hospitality.

Marisa Bidois, CEO Restaurant Association of New Zealand says “We’ve seen a real resurgence of the hospitality scene in Christchurch in the past year in particular. With more openings in the central city, there is a dedicated group of individuals committed to attracting diners back into the city again. These are a creative, community focused lot that recognise the role great hospitality establishments play in the rebuilding of their city.

“As an industry it’s so important that we take time out to celebrate our success and acknowledge our achievements. 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. The Christchurch Hospitality Awards represent the occasion to do just that – celebrate the hard work and success of the hospitality industry within the region. Congratulations to all winners.”

With all categories keenly contested, this year’s winners truly exemplify what it means to be at the top of their respective categories.

The winners were announced at an awards ceremony held at the Isaac Theatre Royal, guests the enjoyed the chance to catch up with their colleagues over a local offering of food and beverage and entertainment by Sweet Mix Kids.

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