As the festive season draws closer, food loving families and friends will be reuniting following a difficult year, hopefully over something delicious and sustainably sourced.
This is a great opportunity for food lovers to seek out the restaurants and caterers signed up to the Australian Marine Conservation Society’s (AMCS) GoodFish program. Many of these venues, especially those in New South Wales and Victoria, have been doing it tough over many months of lockdowns.
GoodFish partner with restaurants and food businesses, chefs and owners who commit to no longer serving or selling seafood which has been assessed by AMCS as being unsustainable and therefore ‘red-listed’ in our guide.
GoodFish is proud to say that the prestigious NOMAD group with restaurants in Surry Hills, Sydney and Flinders Street in Melbourne (which has just opened) is one of those food businesses.
NOMAD executive chef Jacqui Challinor said the business pivoted during the New South Wales lockdowns to become a top notch takeaway venue offering daily changing, themed menus and bombolone (Italian doughnuts) with flavours that played into childhood nostalgia.
“These proved to be quite the hit. And it gave us an opportunity to break the monotony of lockdown for our team and our guests by giving them something special to look forward to,” said Jacqui.
Now that lockdowns have lifted, and new challenges like staff shortages have emerged for the hospitality sector, Jacqui said her’s and NOMAD’s commitment to the environment and buying sustainably with the help of programs like GoodFish stands strong.
“At the end of the day, what we’re going through as an industry right now will one day be a blip on the radar. The benefits of doing our part for the environment and our oceans right now will last a lifetime,” she said.
“On a positive note for us restaurateurs, people are happy to be out and about spending up big which is great!
“People can support the industry simply by booking a table and dining at their favourite restaurants. It’s also important to remember to be kind to the staff. We’re all a little rusty after so long off the job and most severely understaffed.”
GoodFish Program Manager Stephanie McGee said the hospitality sector deserved praise and support for the resilience it had shown over the pandemic.
“Despite the challenges, these businesses and many others in the GoodFish stable have doubled down on their vision for healthy oceans,” said Stephanie.
“Some of these innovations will remain in place across the industry but I know a number of our chefs like Jacqui have more enthusiasm than ever about getting back to doing what they do best – providing memorable evenings for food lovers.
“We would encourage ocean-loving foodies to support all restaurants and businesses that are committed to looking after our oceans as they reopen, whether that be by going for a meal, or buying a voucher for someone they love to enjoy the experience of great food in a wonderful setting.
“Not only are these chefs producing delicious food and amazing experiences for restaurant goers, they are using seafood that treads lightly on our seas while supporting Australian fishing and farming communities. We cannot thank them enough.”
The GoodFish Restaurant Guide provides diners with a list of venues around the country which have committed to removing unsustainable seafood from their menus. Click here to see all the GoodFish restaurants.
Pandemic restrictions still apply in many hospitality venues throughout Australia. Please check official websites for details.