Winning a Forkie for Best Tinder Date Venue was a surprise to Beardy's Bar and Kitchen owner Lee Willson, but he can understand why the bar took the gong out, even though he has never used the dating app before.
“It’s the best spot. It’s a light, casual atmosphere. There’s a good mix of foods and it’s all fresh (ingredients), with a great range of drinks to help move things along,” he says.
“I’ve never actually Tindered, but I’ve seen it happen and I’ve got the concept. I think our customers have a good sense of humour.”
Lee owns the venue along with his brother Ross and it also took out third place in the Not All Heroes Wear Capes — Go-to Hangover Meal, It’s 5 O’clock Somewhere — Favourite Drinking Hole, and Service With A Smile — Best Customer Service categories.
Lee says performing strongly in those categories was less surprising.
“We’ve got a great team. We have a lot of fun and that translates,” he says.
Their coffee, bacon and egg combo is the perfect remedy if you’re suffering ill-effects of too much fun the night before, and the brekkie works burger with salad and hash brown is also a winner.
Lee and Ross regularly change the beers on tap and look for brews with interesting combinations of flavours and names.
“We’ve got probably one of the best craft brew selections on the (Redcliffe) Peninsula,” he says. “We’re always looking for new and different independent brewers. We personally taste all of them,” he says.
While happy with their performance, Lee says the awards have been a great way to showcase the range of quality venues there are across the Moreton Bay Region. “It’s great to be part of it and represent,” he says.
There's no doubt that good food nourishes the body and soul, in the view of Candice Kiss, so she was thrilled to win that category in the Forkies Eat & Drink Awards for her Caboolture cafe Gather and Feast.
Her Bribie Island cafe Annie Lane placed second in the same category and took out third in the category of Treat Yo Self.
Gather and Feast also won the Stop, Collaborate and Listen category and was second in the Most Delish Smashed Avo category. “I’m particularly surprised with Annie Lane because we are so new. With Gather and Feast I was very hopeful, only because we know how great the community is around us and they back us,” she says.
“I think customers can see that we put our heart and soul into it.
“I’m a big believer that most of your smaller ailments can be healed through our own bodies and food. When you’re not feeling the best there’s nothing better than a real, balanced meal that hits the spot.”
Winning the Goodbye Home Loan - Most Delish Smashed Avo category in the Forkies Eat & Drink Awards was a pleasant surprise for the owners of Evolve Espresso at Bribie Island and they feel no guilt whatsoever.
Tia and Dan Woods have owned the business for about 18 months, after moving to the island from Melbourne in search of a lifestyle change and amazing local produce. Tia says they found both.
With her tongue firmly in her cheek, she says she and Dan managed to buy their first home while still eating smashed avocado.
“It makes them (young people) so happy, it’s easier for them to save more money. It’s all about balance,” she says laughing.
“We make sure everything on that dish is high quality. We use local organic sour dough and our own dressing and garnishes.”
The cafe is open for breakfast, brunch and lunch and they serve much more than avocado on toast. Tia says their smoked trout, eggs Benedict and omelettes are also popular.
Evolve Espresso is open 6am-12pm during the week and 6.30am-10am on Saturdays.