Movenpick Kingston

Tasting platter

Tasting platter

Movenpick in Kingston officially opened tonight! I went along to the launch and was treated to the Swiss ice cream and desserts.

The night started with a tasting platter of a scoop each of the Creme Brulee and the (new release) Blueberry Cheesecake, as well as a macaron with the Swiss chocolate ice cream.

Thanks to the lovely Jamie for being so patient while I proceeded to taste just about all the flavours in the store! Thanks to Movenpick Kingston for inviting me to check it out.

The Loft Bar and Grill

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The Loft Bar and Grill is a pop up restaurant situated above The Duxton in O'Connor, Canberra. Previously a cocktail bar, The Loft will run as a restaurant for 3 months while The Duxton undergoes renovations. Head Chef is Griff Pamment, formerly executive chef and culinary director of Luxe espresso, kitchen and bakery (in Sydney), culinary and creative director at Bill Granger's Bill's Restaurants (Sydney, London Japan). I was kindly invited* to attend the launch of The Loft’s pop up restaurant to sample the menu offerings. The produce has been selected with care, with the dishes using the freshest ingredients available. Creative flair can be seen in dishes like the incredible octopus salami from the Fish charcuterie board. After having octopus cooked so beautifully this way, I’m not sure why you would have it any other way! The use of the frozen persimmon in the dessert dish also worked well.

Elements of each dish are well balanced in terms of flavour and texture. I never would have thought grapes would go with chicken, but it did. Also, the chicken was so flavoursome - the seasoning had somehow penetrated the entire chicken breast, and the potato rosti just finished off the perfect dish. All potato rosti should taste like this. It should be made of grated potato and crispy on the outside (not just deep fried mash potato).

I liked that the amount of steak you get for each dish is given in brackets on the menu. So you know exactly how much you're getting for the price. The Dry aged angus sirloin on the bone with roast bone marrow was a delicious main dish that could have easily fed two people (with some sides).

The Loft at Duxton is a great venue for all occasions - from a romantic night for two, to a gathering for friends or family. The dishes can be easily shared or had individually.

Check out my photos from the launch night:

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*I dined as a guest of The Loft Bar and Grill but all views are my own.

The Loft at Duxton Location: Corner of Macpherson St and Sargood St, O'Connor ACT 2602. Entrance is via the stairs in the DuxtonPhone: 02 6247 7330 Open: for lunch Wed - Sat 12pm - 3pm. Open for dinner Wed - Sat 6pm - Late with the bar open from 5pm. Website and menu: http://www.theloftatduxton.com.au/

Loft at Duxton on Urbanspoon

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Launch party: 2014 People's Choice Awards, Canberra

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What's my favourite restaurant? Where is the best cafe in Canberra? These were the tough questions running through my mind as I read the invitation to the launch of OutinCanberra's 2014 People's Choice Awards.

The Awards showcase the best of Canberra's social scene across five categories: Restaurant, Cafe, Entertainment Venue, Attractions and Events, Nightlife Venue.

Canberra has really stepped up its game in recent years and is proactively cultivating a fantastic food scene, helped along in part with the efforts of Visit Canberra and the tourism industry.

Tonight's launch party at Walt and Burley brought together representatives from the hospitality, entertainment and tourism industries and social media influencers to celebrate the best Canberra attractions and to kick off the voting!

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There were a few new faces and a few familiar ones!

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It was great to catch up with the delightful Merrymaker Sisters - Emma and Carla!

Managing Editor of OutInGroup Nic Crowther spoke about the Awards and his passion for Canberra.

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Linda and I couldn't wait to cast our votes!

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Chilled out live music added to the friendly and relaxed vibe.

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Once business was taken care of, we got stuck into the finger food...

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The spectacular view of the Kingston Foreshore as the sun set topped off a fantastic evening.

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Voting is now open! By voting, you can go in the draw to win dinner every month for a year!

Who will/did you vote for? Let me know in the comments below!

Are you on social media? Check out my latest updates on the best food and drink in Canberra and beyond! Facebook : /thefoodavenue Instagram: @thefoodavenue Twitter: @thefoodavenue