Two Ballarat restaurants have joined the elite of Victoria’s food scene.
Mr. Jones and Raggazone scored a Chef’s Hat each in the Age Good food Guide awards this week.
Chef’s Hats are awarded for a restaurant’s food alone – it does not take into account atmosphere or quality of service – making the award a recognition of the chef’s commitment to serving up exceptional meals.
Ballarat’s Powlett Group Chef Liam Downes, who’s behind Ragazzone’s dishes, hopes it’s the start of big things for the restaurant.
“You’ve got to be on your toes at all times, and make sure you’re cooking well. (The judges) will be back next year, and if you do better than you did this year I’m sure they’ll give more hats.”
He says the three hat system is incredibly prestigious in the food world.
“To get two hats is incredibly hard, to get three is the pinnacle. So to get one, we’re very, very impressed.”
Just three restaurants were awarded three hats – Richmond’s Minamishima, Melbourne’s Vue de monde, and Brae in Birregurrs outside of Colac.
Downes adds he believes Ballarat’s food scene is growing.
“We got two in Ballarat in this guide. Because Underbar is closed they were ineligible this year, but they would have defnitely been right up there. So, when they re-open we should definitely have three.”