The Zeewijk Training Restaurant at Durack Institute of Technology in Geraldton has for the third successive year, been named a finalist in the Catering Institute of (WA) Gold Plate Awards for the category ‘Restaurant within a Training Establishment’.
In 2014, Durack will be competing against Bentley Pines Restaurant from Polytechnic West.
The Gold Plate Awards are a well regarded and highly successful hospitality industry awards program which has been conducted by The Catering Institute of Australia since 1967.
For the past 47 years, operators of restaurants, cafes and the like from all over Western Australia have participated and received the benefit of the aims and objectives of the award program which is ‘to reward excellence and to encourage the endeavours of committed industry professionals by giving them a means of improving and promoting their businesses’.
Pictures: Lewis Freer
At Durack, the Gold Plate Awards Program has been used as a motivational tool within the Hospitality Staff and Student body to increase team morale, and give positive objectives and goals to work towards during the year.
Durack’s Managing Director, Bert Beevers is delighted with the announcement and said being named a finalist was further acknowledgement of the quality training at Durack.
"We know the hospitality students do a great job, but it is a great accolade to get such prestigious state wide recognition of the quality hospitality training provided at Durack."
"Our staff have worked diligently with the students to bring them to their current high standards. We are very proud of both our staff and students efforts and achievement to this point and whilst winning this category would be a fantastic success, re-enforcement we are doing the right things is equally satisfying", Mr Beevers said.
Entrants to the competition are judged and critiqued anonymously to determine finalists for each category. An independent panel of judges secretly visit, dine and assess each restaurant between March and July each year. Judges determine finalists and winners for thirty different categories and the restaurant with the highest overall score is also awarded the prestigious Premiers Award.
Durack's Hospitality Manager, Craig Walker said the judging period was both a tense and exciting time.
"The students are aware the meal they prepare may be served to a Gold Plate Judge, so it reinforces the precision needed in every aspect of hospitality including the team work between chefs and front of house students", Mr Walker said.
The awards will be announced at a celebratory function at the Perth Convention Centre on Monday the 20th of October.
During the semester when students are actively training, the Zeewijk Training Restaurant is open to the public for fine dining on Wednesday evenings and a bistro style lunch menu on Thursdays. Sample menus are available here.