The ACT’s best club cookery employees vied for three awards last night at the 2013 ClubsACT Awards for Excellence and judges of the inaugural ACTTAB Chefs Battle had a tough time deciding on the winning team amidst the strong field of competitors.

Chief Executive Jeff House said the competition recognises the both the culinary skill of the combatants and the quality food service available in ACT Clubs.

“Contentious debate arose in the final stages of judging” Mr House said. “There were outstanding main dishes put forward by the clubs whilst other teams nailed the entrée or dessert. However in the end consistency across the three dishes was the determining factor.

“I commend the winning teams, Josh McCulloch and Martin White from Vikings Town Centre and also the very close runners up, Harry Stevenson and David Lockwood from the Hellenic Club of Canberra.

“The winning menu consisted of an entrée of lime and chilli prawns with a cauliflower puree and pan seared chorizo. The main, a garlic and rosemary lamb rump with veg garden and cider sauce and finished with a dessert of fig cannelloni, almond crumble honeycomb and an orange sphere.

“The aromas permeating from the CIT kitchens left even the casual connoisseur with a watering mouth. The dishes presented were of highest quality and evidence clubs as outstanding eateries.

“The expectations of patrons of clubs in the ACT are evolving and there is increasing demand for a diverse quality club offer. Patrons are absolutely looking for great food, drink and excellent service.

A Best Apprentice Award was also presented on the night to Martin Wood from the National Press Club. The judges David Keeley of Pistachio Dining, Jeff Piper of Thirst Restaurant and Tony Muckle from CIT’s—Tourism and Hotel Management all made reference to Martin’s initiative and enthusiasm, his team support, knowledge and culinary flair.

Chefs Battle was a new competition with strong participation from nine ACT clubs including the Hellenic Club of Canberra, National Press Club, Southern Cross Club Tuggeranong, Southern Cross Club Woden, Southern Cross Club Jamison, Vikings Town Centre, ACT Rugby Union Club and Southern Cross Yacht Club.

“First place winners received a five night holiday on Hamilton Island including airfares sponsored by Robert Oatley Wines. Whilst the runners up received a weekend away at the Oatley Vineyard inclusive of a tour with the wine maker, cellar door luncheon and accommodation.

“We must also thank ACTTAB who is the major sponsor for the event and CIT who generously provided their kitchens in support of industry and the competition,” Mr House concluded.

A full list of winners is attached and available on the ClubsACT website at

Click here for media kit

Ends//11 May 2013

Media Contact:
Jeff House
Chief Executive ClubsACT
0406 376 761