Celebrity chefs Matt Moran and Courtney Roulston are ready to embark on a road trip across NSW in search of the best club meal.
As ambassadors for the 2023 Your Local Club Perfect Plate Awards, Matt and Courtney will be sampling as many of the 160-plus competition dishes as possible, which range from the Sydney Rowing Club’s Moreton Bay bug rigatoni gratin to the Broken Hill Sturt Club’s masala-style lamb shanks.
Between 30 May and 9 July, the public is encouraged to visit participating NSW clubs — of which there are more than 130 — taste the Perfect Plate dish/es on offer, and give the dish/es a score out of five by scanning each eatery’s unique QR code or filling out a simple paper form.
ClubsNSW Acting CEO Sallianne Faulkner said the Perfect Plate Awards are designed to showcase the incredible quality and diversity of food on offer in NSW clubs.
“Matt Moran and Courtney Roulston are Australian culinary icons and they both started their careers in clubs, so they are the perfect ambassadors for this competition,” said Sallianne.
While diners can only vote for each Perfect Plate dish once, they are encouraged to taste as many competition dishes at as many NSW clubs as possible to boost their chances of winning a prize. A $100 eftpos gift card will be given away every day of the competition and the two diners who vote for the most Perfect Plate dishes will win a ‘foodie getaway’ for two valued at over $3,000 each.
The 13 clubs that receive the highest average score for their dishes based on patron ratings will be crowned the winner of their respective region. There will also be three state-wide winners announced in the small, medium and large club categories.
Matt is a fourth-generation farmer and still owns a farm in the NSW Central Tablelands, so he is particularly excited to see what clubs in that region create for Perfect Plate.
“I want to see clubs utilise as much fresh, local produce as possible and plate up dishes that take them out of their comfort zone a little bit,” said Matt.
“Having started my career at what was then known as Parramatta RSL, I know there is a plethora of talent in club kitchens and Perfect Plate is a fantastic way for chefs to demonstrate their skills and really impress the public.”
Courtney began her career at the beloved “bowlo” in Putney, which she went on to manage for 11 years.
“Club food has come such a long way in the last 10 years or so — there are hatted chefs working in club kitchens and club restaurants that are consistently booked out every weekend. I think people are going to be blown away with the calibre of the dishes that clubs have entered in Perfect Plate this year,” said Courtney.
Courtney is also keen to visit areas of the state that are still recovering from natural disasters.
“Clubs are the lifeblood of their communities. During floods and bushfires, it’s often the local club stepping up as an evacuation centre and looking after those in need. I’m looking forward to offering my support to those clubs and I’m excited to see what their chefs produce,”
The Your Local Club Perfect Plate Awards are now in their third year, with a tofu dish taking out the top spot in the state-wide large club category in 2022, challenging the notion of what many would consider a typical club meal.
To find out more about the Perfect Plate Awards, including details about participating eateries and competition dishes, visit perfectplate.com.au