Our industry is still producing entrepeneurs that promise great skill and enterprise—as our national awards show.
The lead up to the National Awards for Excellence is always an exciting time. As the winners are announced in each State or Region, the momentum builds to the October finale. Restaurant of the Year and Caterer of the Year are, of course, the crowning glory, however, there are many other categories that capture my attention—New Restaurant, for example.
This years finalists in New Restaurant include: Embrasse Restaurant, Carlton, Victoria; Panacea, Adelaide, South Australia; Bouchard, Perth, Western Australia; Jellyfish Restaurant, Brisbane, Queensland; Lee and Me, New South Wales; and Du Jour Restaurant, New Acton, Australian Capital Territory.
These all represent the latest in concepts and in many cases, design. They demonstrate the great creativity and enterprise that our industry represents. We still churn approximately 17 per cent of our businesses each year.
Whilst it is often seen as a sign of weakness, that our businesses come and go, the entrants in the New Restaurant category show the benefit of this regeneration. New entrepreneurs are entering the market, taking risks and growing the industry.
Congratulations to all of the finalists and winners in our State Awards. You have all achieved great things. I hope to see you in Canberra in October.
President, Restaurant & Catering Australia