Harvest restaurant wins award

Harvest owners Belinda and Tim Absalom and chefs Simon Mercer and Paul Gilligan celebrate the restaurant’s win.
Harvest owners Belinda and Tim Absalom and chefs Simon Mercer and Paul Gilligan celebrate the restaurant’s win. Mike Garry

COOLUM’S Harvest restaurant has beaten a hot field of the Coast’s best eateries to take out one of the major honours at the 2010 Savour Australia Restaurant & Catering Awards for Excellence.

Harvest, at Element on Coolum Beach, won the contemporary Australian restaurant category ahead of top Noosa establishments such as Bistro C, Blue Ginger, La Vida and Season, as well as Eliza’s Restaurant at the Hyatt resort.

Owners Tim and Belinda Absalom said they were “a little bit shocked but also excited” at the win.

“We had the most competitive field out of the whole lot of awards,” Tim said.

“A lot of the awards went to restaurants that had only two in their category. We came up against the good ones.”

Tim said the award was the result of great teamwork and he paid tribute to his dedicated staff.

He said the awards were judged on the complete dining experience.

“They judge you from when they make the phone call to book to how they’re treated as they leave,” he said.

The win is particularly gratifying for Tim and Belinda as they bought the restaurant late last year from renowned chef Gary Skelton, who had owned it since it opened in 2005.

Hyatt Coolum’s Bruschetta Restaurant won the award for the best restaurant in a resort.

Other local nominations included The Olive Tree in Pacific Paradise in the best Italian restaurant category and Sandbar Bistro at the Coolum Surf Club for best family restaurant.

Wasabi at Noosa Sound was named the Sunshine Coast’s best restaurant and best seafood restaurant.

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